U.S. not delaying peace plan over Israeli government turmoil, ambassador to Israel says

U.S. ambassador to Israel David Friedman speaks on stage on during the opening of the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem, Israel, May 14, 2018. (Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)

U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman speaks on stage on during the opening of the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem, Israel, May 14, 2018. (Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)

(JTA) – The U.S. ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, denied reports that the Trump administration is delaying the rollout of its peace plan due to the recent upheaval in Israel’s government.

Friedman also called reports about a high-level meeting last week that included U.S. President Donald Trump to discuss the timing of the peace plan “wildly inaccurate” in a statement released Monday that was posted to the U.S. Embassy in Israel’s website. [Read more…]

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In Israel, president of Chad said ready to renew diplomatic ties

Chad’s President Idriss Deby met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem on Nov. 25, 2018. (Amos Ben-Gershom/GPO)
Chad’s President Idriss Deby met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem on Nov. 25, 2018. (Amos Ben-Gershom/GPO)

Chad’s President Idriss Deby met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem on Nov. 25, 2018. (Amos Ben-Gershom/GPO)

JERUSALEM (JTA) – The president of the African nation of Chad on a visit to Israel said he is ready to restore ties between his Muslim-majority country and the Jewish State.

The visit to Israel by Chad President Idriss Deby is “historic,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his cabinet hours before the president’s arrival.

Deby arrived in Israel for an official visit on Sunday, the first president of the country ever to visit Israel. The two countries severed diplomatic ties in 1972. [Read more…]

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Israel can ‘defend itself’ Netanyahu says in response to Iranian president calling it a ‘fake regime’

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu arrives at the Knesset in Jerusalem for a faction meeting, Nov. 19, 2018. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu arrives at the Knesset in Jerusalem for a faction meeting, Nov. 19, 2018. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

(JTA) – Iranian President Hassan Rouhani called Israel a “cancerous tumour” and a “fake regime” in during his address to an annual Islamic Unity Conference.

“One of the ominous results of World War II was the formation of a cancerous tumour in the region,” Rouhani said on Saturday, referring to Israel.  He also said that Israel is a “fake regime” set up by Western countries. [Read more…]

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Netanyahu spokesperson accused of sexual misconduct to resign, report says

David Keyes (Twitter)

David Keyes (Twitter)

JERUSALEM (JTA) – David Keyes, who took a leave of absence from his post as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s spokesperson amid sexual harassment allegations, will resign following the close of an investigation into the allegations, an Israeli television news program reported.

Hadashot News reported that the Civil Service Commission said Wednesday that it had ended its probe and Keyes would step down. The Prime Minister’s Office said it had not seen the commission’s final report. [Read more…]

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U.S. Justice Department refuses Israel’s request to allow Jonathan Pollard to immigrate there

Jonathan Pollard, left, arrives at a federal courthouse in New York with his wife, Esther, to check in at a probation office just hours after he was released from prison, Nov. 20, 2015. (Ilana Gold/WCBS-TV via AP Images)

Jonathan Pollard, left, arrives at a federal courthouse in New York with his wife, Esther, to check in at a probation office just hours after he was released from prison, Nov. 20, 2015. (Ilana Gold/WCBS-TV via AP Images)

(JTA) – The U.S. Justice Department has refused a formal request by Israel to allow convicted spy for Israel Jonathan Pollard to immigrate there.

The refusal, first reported on Wednesday by Israel’s Hadashot news, came several years ago. Wednesday marked three years since Pollard, now 64, was let out of a federal prison after serving 30 years of a life sentence. [Read more…]

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In light of security situation, going to new elections ‘irresponsible,’ Netanyahu tells nation

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks during a news conference at the Kirya defense headquarters in Tel Aviv, on Nov. 18, 2018. (Tomer Neuberg/Flash90)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks during a news conference at the Kirya defense headquarters in Tel Aviv, on Nov. 18, 2018. (Tomer Neuberg/Flash90)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks during a news conference at the Kirya defence headquarters in Tel Aviv, on Nov. 18, 2018. (Tomer Neuberg/Flash90)

JERUSALEM (JTA) – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu named himself defence minister and said that going to snap elections would be “irresponsible.”

“We are in a particularly complex security situation, and in moments like these, we do not go to elections,” Netanyahu said Sunday evening in Tel Aviv in a nationally televised address.

“In times like these, you do not overthrow a government. It’s irresponsible. We have another full year until elections. We are in an intensifying battle, and in the middle of a battle we don’t abandon our posts. In the middle of a battle we do not play politics. The security of the nation is beyond politics, and the security of the nation is also beyond personal concerns,” Netanyahu said. [Read more…]

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Early elections in Israel? Netanyahu says he’s ‘confident’ his coalition partners won’t topple the government

Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett, shown at an education conference in Ramat Gan, Israel, Nov. 15, 2018, has threatened to remove his party from the country’s governing coalition. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)
Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett, shown at an education conference in Ramat Gan, Israel, Nov. 15, 2018, has threatened to remove his party from the country’s governing coalition. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett, shown at an education conference in Ramat Gan, Israel, Nov. 15, 2018, has threatened to remove his party from the country’s governing coalition. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

(JTA) – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Friday that he is confident his coalition partners would not topple his government.

Netanyahu’s office issued a statement amid early election talk within the Jewish Home party, which can force Israel to go to the ballots a year earlier than planned by leaving the country’s governing coalition. [Read more…]

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