Rasmea Odeh, Palestinian woman imprisoned in Israel for terror attack, takes U.S. plea deal

(JTA) – A Palestinian woman who had not told U.S. immigration authorities that she had been imprisoned in Israel for two terror attacks accepted a plea bargain that forces her to leave the country.

Rasmea Odeh, 69, would not spend time in U.S. prison or detention but would lose her U.S. citizenship, according to a Thursday statement by the Rasmea Defense Committee. [Read more…]

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Co-founder of BDS movement arrested in Israel for tax evasion

(JTA) – Omar Barghouti, a co-founder of the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel was arrested in Israel for tax evasion.

Barghouti, a Qatari-born Palestinian who lives in northern Israel with his Israeli-Arab wife, was arrested Monday and questioned before being released a few hours later on bail, the Israeli business daily Globes reported. He was banned from leaving the country and required to leave his passport with the court in Haifa, according to reports. [Read more…]

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Report: Israeli public security minister plans database of Israeli citizens supporting BDS

JERUSALEM (JTA) – Israel’s public security minister plans to set up a database of Israeli citizens involved in supporting boycotts against Israel or West Bank settlements.

Gilad Erdan, the minister of public security and strategic affairs, whose office is responsible for co-ordinating Israel’s response to the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel, reportedly has been trying to implement the plan for several months, Haaretz reported Tuesday, citing unnamed senior Israeli officials. [Read more…]

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Ohio State Hillel drops Jewish LGBT group for co-sponsoring event by pro-BDS group

(JTA) – Ohio State University’s Hillel cut ties with a Jewish LGBTQ student group for co-sponsoring an event organized by Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP), an organization that supports the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel.

The divorce is the latest flare-up in an ongoing dispute among campus Jewish groups over Hillel International guidelines rejecting partnerships with groups deemed hostile toward Israel. [Read more…]

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ZOA endorses Israel’s anti-BDS law

WASHINGTON (JTA) – The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) endorsed a new Israel law that would ban entry supporters of boycotting Israel or its settlements, setting it apart from an array of Jewish groups who oppose the law.

“The boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel is unjustified, discriminatory, harmful economic terrorism, powered by virulent Jew hatred,” the ZOA said Friday in a statement. [Read more…]

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Association for Israel Studies slams Israel’s BDS travel ban

(JTA) – The Association for Israel Studies harshly criticized Israel’s new ban on entry to supporters of boycotts, calling the law anti-democratic and warning that it would prevent academic exchange with the Jewish state.

The association, a professional grouping of academics who focus on Israel, said in a statement Friday that the law could turn Israel into an “isolated entity open only to those who ascribe to official policy.” That in turn could create a “chilling effect” on students and scholars who want to come to Israel to study and conduct research, and will prevent the association from holding conferences in Israel – a situation the statement called an “absurdity.” [Read more…]

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ADL is second establishment Jewish group to oppose Israel’s anti-BDS law

WASHINGTON (JTA) – The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) became the second establishment Jewish organization to speak out against Israel’s new anti-BDS law.

“Israel’s democracy, pluralism, open society serve as best defense against #BDS,” the group said on Twitter on Wednesday, using the acronym for the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement. “New law harms rather than helps.” [Read more…]

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