Anshel Pfeffer

Israel fears over EU sanctions plan

By Anshel Pfeffer, November 17, 2014

The Israeli government is concerned that the European Union will try to convince its member to implement sanctions on Israel over building projects in the West Bank.

Possible sanctions appear in a document prepared by the Middle East department of the EU's foreign service, which was revealed in Israeli newspaper Haaretz.

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Threat of intifada as terror hits Israel

By Anshel Pfeffer, November 13, 2014

Israel and the West Bank were on a knife edge this week as both Tel Aviv and Jerusalem were hit by terror attacks and Palestinian leaders raised the spectre of a third intifada.

Security forces struggled to restore calm as violent demonstrations spread throughout the West Bank and threatened to erupt among Arabs living within the Green Line.

Monday saw two terror attacks on Israelis in what

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Israel fears worst in Iran nuclear talks

By Anshel Pfeffer, November 13, 2014

Israeli leaders remain deeply sceptical of US intentions on the eve of the deadline to reach an agreement on Iran's nuclear programme.

Despite repeated US assurances that Iran will not be allowed to acquire a nuclear weapon and reports that no progress was made in the round of talks this week, the current assessment in Jerusalem is that the Obama administration is determined to reach a deal at

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Israel fears US wants Iran nuclear deal at any price

By Anshel Pfeffer, November 11, 2014

Israeli leaders remain deeply sceptical of American intentions on the eve of the crucial stage of talks to reach a comprehensive agreement on Iran's nuclear programme before the November 24 deadline.

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Perfect storm

By Anshel Pfeffer, November 6, 2014

Israeli diplomats are concerned that the coming months will see concerted diplomatic pressure on their government to make major concessions to the Palestinians or suffer some form of sanctions.

As the American mid-term elections have drawn to their end, President Barack Obama enters his final two years with no need to be re-elected or help his party win in Congress.

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Cracks deepening in Israeli coalition

By Anshel Pfeffer, November 6, 2014

Less than two years old, the ruling coalition in Israel already looks as if it is on its last legs.

Riven by personal rivalries and ideological divides, the glue holding it together is a collective fear of early elections, which most coalition parties fear could lead to them losing Knesset seats.

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Likudniks welcome US midterm election result

By Anshel Pfeffer, November 6, 2014

The resounding success of the Republican Party in the US mid-term elections was greeted with quiet satisfaction by the Likud government this week.

Many in Israel believe that the Republicans' new-found control of the Senate and enlarged majority in Congress will have a significant impact on US foreign policy in the final two years of Barack Obama's presidency.

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Livni: bus segregation is apartheid

By Anshel Pfeffer, November 6, 2014

Israel's Justice Minister Tzipi Livni ramped up the controversy over the decision to prevent Palestinian workers from travelling on Israeli buses in the West Bank by describing the reasons for the move as "apartheid".

Ms Livni, who had directed the attorney general to look into the issue, made the remark in an interview on IDF Radio while discussing Defence Minister Moshe Yaalon's decision last

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Israel-US ties in crisis

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 30, 2014

US-Israel diplomatic relations have hit a new low as government members on both sides have traded harsh insults and criticisms in recent days.

This week, senior US government officials called Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu "chickenshit", and a "coward" in interviews with the Atlantic.

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Could Bennett be PM?

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 30, 2014

It was no coincidence that as the report emerged that a senior American had called Benjamin Netanyahu a "chickenshit", the first member of the prime minister's cabinet to leap to his defence was the man often portrayed as his main rival.

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Arabs blocked from buses

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 30, 2014

Israel's Defence Minister Moshe Yaalon caused a political and legal row after accepting the demands of West Bank settlers to stop Palestinian workers travelling on Israeli buses.

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Jerusalem on edge as attacks keep coming

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 30, 2014

The security and diplomatic situation in eastern Jerusalem has steadily deteriorated in recent days as Israeli and Palestinian leaders have engaged in a war of words.

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Rivlin goes to Arab memorial

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 30, 2014

President Reuven Rivlin made an unorthodox visit to Kafr Kassem on Sunday where he participated in a memorial service for 49 Arab-Israeli villagers murdered by Israeli police in 1956.

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Israel fears European backlash

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 23, 2014

Israel fears other European countries could follow Sweden's government in recognising a Palestinian state, a concern reinforced by the Commons vote.

The foreign ministry in Jerusalem did not attach major importance to last week's Commons motion, which does not compel the British government to change its policy.

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Bibi battles to stop collapse of coalition

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 23, 2014

Benjamin Netanyahu held emergency meetings with the leaders of the coalition parties on Wednesday in an attempt to ward off early elections.

Some Yesh Atid and Hatnuah MKs are calling for their parties to leave the coalition over the lack of any progress in the peace talks and the prime minister's decision not to back conversion reform.

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Fury over Kerry's IS remark

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 23, 2014

Remarks by US State Secretary John Kerry linking the international campaign against Islamic State (IS) with the impasse in the Israel-Palestinian peace process have sparked a political storm in Israel and underlined the shaky state of Israel's strategic alliance with the US.

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Plans to split Israeli town into two pieces

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 23, 2014

Representatives of the non-Charedi communities in the town of Beit Shemesh, to the west of Jerusalem, are lobbying to split the municipality into two separate entities - one for the strictly Orthodox and one for the others.

The move comes seven months after Shas's Moshe Abutbul was re-elected as mayor in a second round of elections following claims of voter fraud last year.

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Border attacks are Hizbollah terror message

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 15, 2014

Two incidents on Israel's northern border last week have raised concerns that Hizbollah is planning more aggressive operations in the near future.

In an explosion on Tuesday morning near Mount Dov, close to the Lebanese border, two soldiers from an IDF bomb-disposal unit were moderately wounded.

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Netanyahu plans early elections

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 14, 2014

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is preparing for early elections, most likely in late 2015, two years before his government is due to complete its full term.

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How campaigners milk the food price debate

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 14, 2014

A Facebook post on food prices in Israel has kicked off another public debate over the financial burden on the middle classes.

Bizarrely, however, the row has not focused on a staple, but on the popular Milky dairy pudding, composed of whipped cream and chocolate milk.

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