Sandy Rashty

Optimism that EU will label Hizbollah ‘terrorists’

By Sandy Rashty, December 20, 2012

The US and Israel-led campaign to have Hizbollah labelled a terrorist organisation by the EU and secure a Europe-wide ban on the group has taken a step forward.

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Dominique Strauss-Kahn faces pimping inquiry in France

By Sandy Rashty, December 20, 2012

Judges have confirmed that Dominique Strauss-Kahn will face a pimping inquiry, despite an appeal from the former presidential candidate’s legal team on Wednesday morning.

Mr Strauss-Kahn and four other men are accused of knowing fraudulently obtained money was being paid to the vice girls by a prostitution racket based in Lille, northern France, according to the Telegraph.

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Security Council members blast Israel on settlement plan

By Sandy Rashty, December 19, 2012

Four Security Council members, including the United Kingdom, issued a joint statement on Wednesday attacking Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision to proceed with the E1 settlement plan.

The UK, France, Germany and Portugal said they “strongly oppose” the decision to build 2,612 housing units in East Jerusalem.

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Bomb threat to LA synagogue

By Sandy Rashty, December 19, 2012

A Los Angeles Reform synagogue has been closed while police investigate a series of bomb threats.

A suspicious package, discovered adjacent to Wilshire Boulevard Temple on Monday, was blown up by the LA Police Department (LAPD). The package was not found to contain any explosives.

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Israeli-Arab teenager charged over Tel Aviv bus bomb

By Sandy Rashty, December 19, 2012

An Israeli-Arab teenager has been charged with planting the Tel Aviv bus bomb that wounded 15 people on November 21, during the recent Israel-Gaza conflict.

Eighteen-year-old Mohammed Mafarja, a Bir Zeit University student from Taibe, allegedly informed associates when the bomb was in place, before they detonated the device using a mobile phone.

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88% of Palestinians support violent struggle, a new poll reveals

By Sandy Rashty, December 19, 2012

The majority of Palestinians from Gaza and the West Bank believe that armed struggle is the best method of achieving Palestinian independence, according to a new poll by the Arab World Research and Development centre in Ramallah.

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Jacob Ostreicher released from Bolivian jail

By Sandy Rashty, December 19, 2012

The Orthodox American businessman who has spent the last 18 months in a Bolivian jail without charge has been released on bail.

Grandfather Jacob Ostreicher, who was accused of allowing his rice farming business to be used as a front for money-laundering for the drugs trade, was ordered to pay more than £8000 in bail money and will remain under house arrest.

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Federation to promote Moroccan Jewry in the UK

By Sandy Rashty, December 18, 2012

A new organisation to promote the presence of Moroccan Jewry in the UK was established earlier this month.

The World Federation of Moroccan Jewry’s (WFMJ) official launch was attended by more than 200 people at the refurbished Sephardi Porat Yosef Synagogue in Hendon.

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Tears at Chai as tragic story is told

By Sandy Rashty, December 17, 2012

Guests at Monday’s Chai Cancer Care dinner were in tears as kosher caterer Jason Millan praised the support Chai had given to his late wife Nikki, who died last week.

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Lord Levy keeps Stoke Newington centenary in the family

By Sandy Rashty, December 17, 2012

Lord Levy’s “emotional” family connection to the Walford Road Synagogue in Stoke Newington was a feature of the independent Orthodox congregation’s centenary dinner on Monday.

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RSY girls arrested in Women of the Wall protest

By Sandy Rashty, December 14, 2012

Two young British women have been arrested in Jerusalem after participating in a Women of the Wall religious rights protest.

The 18-year-olds, who are currently on RSY-Netzer’s Israel gap-year programme, were arrested on Friday during morning prayers at the Western Wall.

Women of the Wall protests often lead to women being arrested for praying at the site wearing a tallit.

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Tea parties boost infertility charity

By Sandy Rashty, December 14, 2012

An international fundraising event led by a Jewish charity providing support for couples with infertility problems was supported by 1,150 people from London to Switzerland.

Tea-ember – a transatlantic tea party initiative hosted in December – raised £15,000 for Chana by encouraging people to hold events and make a charitable donation.

One-hundred tea parties were held.

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Teenage Jewish singer makes the X Factor finals

By Sandy Rashty, December 14, 2012

The American public has voted and Carly Rose Sonenclar – a 13 year old Jewish girl from New York – is a finalist on The X Factor USA.

The young star, mentored by X Factor judge Britney Spears, received a standing ovation from all four judges when she performed Nina Simone’s “Feeling Good” during her first audition.

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WJC president ‘sought to buy election result’

By Sandy Rashty, December 13, 2012

World Jewish Congress President Ron Lauder has been asked to stand aside by the organisation’s vice-president in the wake of accusations that he offered a large sum of money to influence an Austrian community leadership election in November.

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Israeli shop ‘set to sue’ protesters in Brighton

By Sandy Rashty, December 13, 2012

An Israeli shop in Brighton is set to issue legal proceedings against pro-Palestine activists who have picketed at the eco-friendly store for the past three months.

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Lieberman indicted with breach of trust

By Sandy Rashty, December 13, 2012

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has been indicted for breach of trust.

The charge against the Israeli leader was announced by a government spokesperson on Thursday, following a 12-year-long investigation into Mr Lieberman’s business and political conduct.

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Netanyahu uses Twitter to ‘strengthen’ dialogue with Arabs

By Sandy Rashty, December 13, 2012

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is to launch a new Twitter account in Arabic in an attempt to develop his relationships in the Middle East.

The move will allow his office to contact respondents directly in Arabic. The idea, said Mr Netanyahu's Arab media spokesman, Ofir Gendelman, was "[to strengthen] dialogue with Arab media and public opinion”.

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WJC Secretary General resigns

By Sandy Rashty, December 13, 2012

World Jewish Congress Secretary General Dan Diker has announced that he will leave the organisation in January 2013.

The former WJC adviser on Middle East policy cited “administrative reasons” for his departure.

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Germany votes to keep circumcision legal

By Sandy Rashty, December 12, 2012

The German parliament approved a new bill to protect male circumcision on Wednesday.

The new ruling, which legalises the circumcision of male infants by authorised practitioners, was passed by an overwhelming majority of 434 to 100 votes.

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UCL students challenge referendum on Gaza

By Sandy Rashty, December 12, 2012

University College London students have been faced with a large-scale pro-Palestine campaign ahead of a union referendum on the "inhumane situation in Gaza”.

The referendum will determine whether the university’s union, UCLU, will adopt the motion as policy and take any action “in light of the on-going conflict.”

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