Kiev synagogue was bugged, chief rabbi says

(JTA) – Secret recording devices and other surveillance activities were discovered at one of Kiev’s main synagogues, according to a chief rabbi of Ukraine who said this “discredits the state.”

Rabbi Moshe Azman, one of two chief Orthodox rabbis in Ukraine, announced the discovery this month in a statement Tuesday. [Read more…]

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Haifa elects its first woman mayor, Jerusalem race goes to runoff

(JTA) – A woman was elected mayor of Haifa for the first time, while the mayor’s race in Jerusalem will go to a runoff following municipal elections held across Israel on Tuesday.

In Tel Aviv, Ron Huldai will serve a fifth term as mayor after defeating his deputy.

In Jerusalem, voters will return to the polls in two week to choose between Municipal Council member Moshe Lion and former deputy mayor Ofer Berkovitch, who each received about 30 per cent of the vote, failing to reach the 40 per cent threshold to avoid a runoff. [Read more…]

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Thousands protest Trump visit to synagogue where massacre took place

An estimated 4,000 people protested Donald Trump as he visited the Squirrel Hill neighborhood of Pittsburgh, near site of the Tree of Life mass shooting, Oct. 30, 2018. (Jeff Swensen/Getty Images)
An estimated 4,000 people protested Donald Trump as he visited the Squirrel Hill neighborhood of Pittsburgh, near site of the Tree of Life mass shooting, Oct. 30, 2018. (Jeff Swensen/Getty Images)

An estimated 4,000 people protested Donald Trump as he visited the Squirrel Hill neighbourhood of Pittsburgh, near site of the Tree of Life mass shooting, Oct. 30, 2018. (Jeff Swensen/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH (JTA) – Thousands of protesters turned their backs on U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday as his motorcade approached the synagogue where a gunman killed 11 worshippers.

At the Tree of Life Congregation, Trump and his entourage met with its spiritual leader, Rabbi Jeffrey Myers, and placed stones on an outdoor memorial for the 11 victims. Inside, they lit candles for the dead.

The president was accompanied by his wife, Melania, along with his Jewish daughter, Ivanka, and her husband, Jared Kushner, as well as the Treasury secretary, Steve Mnuchin, who is Jewish. Also present was Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer. [Read more…]

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Palestinian body’s decision to suspend recognition of Israel could end Oslo Accords

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas addressing the Palestinian National Council in the West Bank city of Ramallah, April 30, 2018. (Flash90)

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas addressing the Palestinian National Council in the West Bank city of Ramallah, April 30, 2018. (Flash90)

(JTA) – A PLO decision-making body passed a motion to suspend its recognition of Israel until Israel recognizes a Palestinian state.

Monday night’s decision by the Central Committee would bring an official end to the Oslo Accords signed in September 1993. However, the decision is nonbinding, the official Palestinian Authority (PA) news agency WAFA reported, and requires the approval of PA President Mahmoud Abbas. [Read more…]

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Republican Jewish candidate defends inviting ‘Messianic rabbi’ to honour Pittsburgh victims

Lena Epstein, a Republican House candidate in Michigan, greets guests during her campaign office’s grand opening event in Commerce Charter Township, May 5, 2018. (Rachel Woolf for The Washington Post via Getty Images)
Lena Epstein, a Republican House candidate in Michigan, greets guests during her campaign office’s grand opening event in Commerce Charter Township, May 5, 2018. (Rachel Woolf for The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Lena Epstein, a Republican House candidate in Michigan, greets guests during her campaign office’s grand opening event in Commerce Charter Township, May 5, 2018. (Rachel Woolf for The Washington Post via Getty Images)

(JTA) – Lena Epstein, a Jewish Republican nominee for U.S. Congress in Michigan, defended inviting a ‘Messianic rabbi’ to honour the victims of the Pittsburgh synagogue massacre at a campaign event that featured U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence.

“I invited the prayer because we must unite as a nation – while embracing our religious differences – in the aftermath of Pennsylvania,” Epstein said in a statement she posted Monday on Twitter after news of the event prompted Jewish outrage on the social networking service. [Read more…]

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French university students accused of ranking Jewish classmates in Facebook group

(JTA) – University students in France listed and ranked Jewish classmates according to their level of affiliation as part of a string of jokes online and on campus featuring anti-Semitic hate speech, an alleged victim of this behaviour said.

The medical student at Paris 13 university, a 19-year-old woman identified only as Rose, filed a complaint with police on Oct. 20, the Europe 1 radio station reported Monday. [Read more…]

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