World news

Pope tells Holocaust denier to recant

By Simon Rocker, February 5, 2009

Pope benedict XVI has responded to international pressure and ordered a maverick cleric to recant his Holocaust-denying views.

Jewish-Catholic relations were plunged into crisis last week by the Vatican’s rehabilitation of English-born Richard Williamson, along with three other bishops associated with an ultra-conservative breakaway sect.

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Erdogan ‘vows’ to fight hate

February 5, 2009

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan — who has been fiercely critical of Israel’s conduct in Gaza — vowed to act against a wave of antisemitism in Turkey, including street protests, direct threats to Jews and a boycott campaign, following the war.

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South African apology over slur

February 5, 2009

South Africa’s deputy foreign minister apologised for alleging that “Jewish money” controlled the United States. Fatima Hajaig told a rally last month that “control of America, just like the control of most western countries, is in the hands of Jewish money”.

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Looted art claim settled

February 5, 2009

Two early paintings by Picasso will remain in New York’s Museum of Modern Art and the Guggenheim after claims they were looted by the Nazis were settled out of court. Claimant Julius Schoeps said his German great-uncle had been forced to sell the works.

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Arson at kosher Paris shop

February 5, 2009

A warehouse in a Paris suburb belonging to a kosher supermarket was damaged in what police believe may have been an antisemitic attack.

France, home to Europe’s biggest Jewish community, saw almost 70 antisemitic incidents during the recent war in Gaza.

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Hamas keen to show off power

By Jacey Herman, February 5, 2009

If 14-year-old Amira al-Qerem does not get specialist medical care soon, she will never be able to walk again.

She is one of four children in Gaza City’s Al Shifa hospital waiting for permission to be evacuated to France. Hamas in Gaza has agreed, but the Fatah government in Ramallah is refusing, arguing that Hamas is using the children to garner international sympathy. This war of words is just another sign of the ever-increasing rivalry between the Palestinian factions.

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Outrage as Pope lifts ban on Holocaust denier

By Simon Rocker, January 29, 2009

Jewish leaders are calling on the Vatican to repair the damage caused by the rehabilitation of an ultra-conservative bishop who is a Holocaust denier.

Rabbi David Rosen, president of the International Jewish Committee on Interreligous Consultations, believed the controversy “worse than any of the crises we have had with the Catholic Church”, almost since the new era of dialogue began more than 40 years ago.

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Crisis cash for Madoff victims

January 29, 2009

The Jewish Funders Network has launched a Crisis Loan Fund in the USA to assist non-profit organisations which invested with Bernard Madoff.  With an initial pool of $5 million, the fund will provide financing and interest subsidies to organisations facing budget shortfalls.

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Award for Oz Everest mother

January 29, 2009

Cheryl Bart, the Jewish mother who made history last year when she climbed Mount Everest with her daughter, has been made an Officer of the Order of Australia. The Sydneysider dedicated her award to her late father, Eric Klinghoffer, a Holocaust survivor.

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Gaza spurs Latin American fears

By David Labi, January 29, 2009

Israel’s Gaza operation has led to a rise in antisemitism in Latin America and fresh fears for the safety of Venezuelan Jews, according to a prominent Latin American Jewish organisation.

In an open letter, the Confederación Latinoamericana Maccabi (CLAM) has expressed grave concerns over a new wave of antisemitism in Venezuela, prompted by events in Gaza.

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