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Sunday, Jun. 26 '16, Sivan 20, 5776



HEADLINES:
1. DENTIST ARRESTED IN CONNECTION WITH HIZMA BOMBING
2. NEW DEMOCRATIC PLATFORM PUSHES 'PALESTINIAN RIGHTS'
3. CABINET RESOLVES TO GET TO BOTTOM OF YEMENITE CHILDREN AFFAIR 
4. LIFE SENTENCE PLUS 31 YEARS FOR PRIDE PARADE MURDERER
5. RABBI MAZUZ AND ELI YISHAI VISIT BEREAVED RABBI COHEN
6. WILL US GOVERNMENT HELP DETAINED TEENAGER?
7. BRAVERY & PERSEVERANCE: WOMAN WOUNDED BY TERRORIST GIVES BIRTH
8. CAR RAMMING ATTACK NEAR KIRYAT ARBA


1. DENTIST ARRESTED IN CONNECTION WITH HIZMA BOMBING
by Uzi Baruch

The Shabak internal security agency arrested a man suspected in a May 10th bombing attack north of Jerusalem that left one IDF officer badly injured.

The attack, which took place on the eve of Israel’s Memorial Day (Yom HaZikaron), targeted Israeli soldiers near the village of Hizma, just north of the Pisgat Ze’ev neighborhood in Jerusalem.

During interrogation, the man admitted that he had prepared additional explosive devices and was planning to strike Israeli targets in the Maaleh Adumim area.

The terrorist has been identified as Dr. Samer Mahmoud Daoud Halabiyeh, a 35-year old dentist from the town of Abu Dis, just east of Jerusalem.

Halabiyeh reportedly placed the explosive device, then activated it with his cell phone when he saw Israeli soldiers approaching it.

A number of other medical practitioners with ties to the terrorist were also taken into custody by security forces.

Among them are Dr. Dagana Fayz Gemal Navhan, a 35-year old dentist from the Kalandia refugee camp; the bomber’s father, Mahmoud Daoud Shahada Halabiyeh, who works as a hospital nurse; the bomber’s brother, who also works as a dentist in Abu Dis, and Halabiyeh’s cousin, a 31-year resident of Abu Dis.

According to investigators, Halabiyeh began planning the attack in February 2016, claiming he was motivated by "the desecration of Al Aqsa and Israeli attacks on Palestinian children."

Halabiyeh revealed during questioning that he stored the explosive devices in his dental clinic.


2. NEW DEMOCRATIC PLATFORM PUSHES 'PALESTINIAN RIGHTS'
by Ron Kampeas

JTA – Following efforts by representatives of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, the Democratic National Committee has altered the party’s platform to reflect "Palestinian aspirations", but rejected language demanding Israel end its "occupation" of Judea and Samaria and halt construction in Jewish communities over the Green Line.

According to an Associated Press report emailed to reporters late Saturday by the Sanders campaign, the platform calls for a two-state solution, but does not frame it purely as an outcome that benefits Israel, as previous platforms have.

It declares that achieving Palestinian statehood would provide "the Palestinians with independence, sovereignty, and dignity."

The platform drafting committee of the Democratic National Committee met in cities across the country. The meeting this weekend, which wrapped up the draft and where the Israel-related language was approved, was held in St. Louis. The full platform committee will vote on the draft on July 8-9 in Orlando.

The committee rejected language proposed by James Zogby – a Sanders appointee to the committee and the president of the Arab American Institute – that called for "an end to occupation and illegal settlements".

Zogby said Sanders, the first Jewish candidate to win major nominating contests, helped draft the rejected language.

According to tweets by Josh Ruebner, the policy director of the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation, who was monitoring in real time the St. Louis meeting of the platform drafting committee, Zogby’s language was defeated around midnight Friday 8-5.

Speaking against Zogby’s language were Wendy Sherman, a former deputy secretary of state and an appointee named by Hillary Clinton, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, and Howard Berman, a former California congressman who was named to the committee by Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., the DNC chairwoman. Advocating for the language was Cornel West, a Sanders appointee and a philosopher who backs the boycott Israel movement.

Keeping out language that could potentially alienate the pro-Israel community was a priority to the Clinton campaign. Earlier this week, Jake Sullivan, her senior foreign policy advisor emailed JTA to say that "Hillary Clinton’s steadfast support for Israel, and the importance of the U.S.-Israel relationship, are well known. As we have said previously, she remains confident that the party platform will reflect her views."

Clinton has secured enough delegates to win the first round of voting at the convention in Philadelphia next week. Sanders, unusually for a candidate who is set to lose, was given five spots on the platform drafting committee, a reflection of the strength of his campaign. Clinton named six and Wasserman Schultz the remaining four.

Zogby and another Sanders appointee to the committee who advocates for Palestinian statehood, Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., seemed happy with the overall platform, saying Sanders scored wins on his proposal to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour, break up big banks, and expand social security.

"We got some great stuff in the platform that has never been in there before," Zogby told AP.

J Street, a left-wing NGO, praised the Israel-related language.

"The new language breaks with the party’s practice of framing its aim of establishing a Palestinian state solely in terms of Israel’s interests," it said in a statement. "By including parallel acknowledgement of Israeli and Palestinian rights, the party underscores its belief that the only viable resolution to the conflict–a two-state solution–requires recognizing the fates of the two-peoples are intertwined."


3. CABINET RESOLVES TO GET TO BOTTOM OF YEMENITE CHILDREN AFFAIR 
by Shai Landesman

The long saga of the Yemenite children may be coming to a close.

At the cabinet meeting today (Sunday), the government adopted a resolution to appoint Minister without portfolio Tzachi Hanegbi to act in the name of the government in resolving the Yemenite children affair.

Allegations have been circling for many decades that in the early stage of the State of Israel many children of Yemenite families were taken from them and given to be raised by Ashkenazi families, with the parent then being told that their child had died. It is further alleged that this was done either for racist reasons--a belief that Yemenite parents are not fit to raise children--or anti-religious reasons--a desire by the state to make the children secular. 

In 1995 a commission was appointed to investigate the matter, headed by then Supreme Court Justice Yehuda Cohen. After 7 years of work, it was concluded that there was not enough evidence to support the conclusion that these kidnappings did indeed occur. However, many documents were then classified and hidden from the public.

Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked led a push to bring these documents to light, so that the matter can finally be put to rest, and today the matter was brought up for discussion at the Cabinet meeting, where action was finally resolved upon.

Prime Minister Netanyahu called the matter "historic", further saying that "I am committed to finding the truth about this, and Minister Hanegbi will present his findings to the government."

The Prime Minister further noted during the deliberations that there were other children from non-Yemenite backgrounds whose fate remained mysterious, and would be investigated.

Minister Shaked was pleased with the result. "I'm happy my proposal bore fruit. I will give Minister Hanegbi all the help he needs. The truth must come to light." 


4. LIFE SENTENCE PLUS 31 YEARS FOR PRIDE PARADE MURDERER
by Shai Landesman

Yishai Schlissel, the man recently convicted of the murder of 16-year-old Shira Banki and six more counts of attempted murder, all perpetrated at the Pride Parade in Jerusalem on August 2015, has been sentenced to life in prison and 31 more years.

In addition to the prison sentence, he has been ordered to pay monetary compensation to the tune of NIS 258,000, the maximum amount, to the Banki family and each of the other victims, for a total of NIS 2,064,000.

In the sentence, the judges wrote the following: "We have before us, then, a man who does not see those around him as people. A cruel man. A dangerous and heartless man. A man for whom the Judaism of pleasant ways, the Judaism of peace, the Judaism that teaches that people--all people--are created in the image of God, is completely foreign. A man who sees himself as giver and taker of life according to principles he has appointed himself to enforce. This dangerous man can no longer be allowed to roam the streets of Jerusalem or anywhere else." 

It should be noted that the prosecution had requested a sentence of life in prison plus 60 years for the Schlissel's crimes.

Schlissel will almost certainly not appeal his sentence as he has made very clear throughout the process that he doesn't recognize the court's right to judge him, and even refused to cooperate with his attorneys. 



5. RABBI MAZUZ AND ELI YISHAI VISIT BEREAVED RABBI COHEN
by Arutz Sheva Staff

The Shiva house Rabbi Shalom Cohen, head of Shas' Council of Torah Sages, received a visit from former Shas head Eli Yishai, and his supporter Rabbi Meir Mazuz. 

Despite the tension between the two sides, due to last year's contentious election, Rabbis Cohen and Mazuz discussed only Torah matters, the memory of R' Cohen's late wife, and her family's roots.

Following the death of the Rabbanit Cohen Yishai published some words of eulogy and comfort. "We are shocked and broken at the news of the passing away of the great woman Rabbanit Cohen, who shared Rabbi Cohen's life for many decades and accepted great suffering upon herself at the end of her life with love.

"I merited seeing some of the Rabbanit's great deeds, her dedication to Torah study, and her pleasant ways, all quietly and modestly, without any pretensions. She merited raising a generation of children, all of whom are busy with Torah and Mitzvot."

On Friday the Prime Minister paid a visit to Rabbi Cohen's house and offered his condolences. This morning (Sunday), Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon and former Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon visited. 

  


6. WILL US GOVERNMENT HELP DETAINED TEENAGER?
by Yedidya Ben-Or

The family of a 15-year-old boy from the town of Yitzhar who was barred from staying in his parents house by police and subsequently arrested because he was found there, has contacted the United States embassy and requested their help in protecting the teenager's rights.

The boy's mother is a US citizen, and emphasized in her request that she isn't asking for any political meddling, only the protection of her child's rights.

"Our son is young and he has nowhere to stay but his parents' house," the mother wrote to the embassy, "he is in administrative detention so we can't fight it through any of the regular legal channels.

"As the body responsible for protecting the rights of your citizens, even if they live in Israel, we request that you inquire and find out how the basic rights of a minor can be so easily violated, and help us secure his basic right to live in his home". 

A hearing is scheduled today (Sunday) in the Petah Tikva Magistrates Court, in the matter of the ongoing investigation against the boy for suspected anti-Arab activity, and the issue of the maintenance of his rights and due process. He will be represented by Attorney Hai Haber of the 'Honenu' organization. This organization is dedicated to ensuring that due process is respected in investigations such as these. All details of the allegations against the teen are classified, and held by the Shin-Bet security agency.

 The boy spent the past Shabbat in custody following Lod District Court judge Varda Maroz's decision to accept the police's appeal to keep him under house arrest outside of Judea and Samaria. Judge Maroz thus essentially overturned the previous decision by Petah Tikva Magistrates Court judge Yael Belcher, which had stipulated the boy could remain under house arrest in his parents' home. Belcher had also strongly criticized the police's conduct in relation to this matter.

In the course of deliberations it became clear that the police's plan to have the boy stay on a farm in the south isn't viable as the farm owner has refused to consent to the arrangement under these conditions. An additional farm owner contacted by the police likewise refused to host the teen without his parents' consent. 

The organization dealing with the case has commented in response to events: "This is a of human rights violation scandal. We've already seen several times what kind of "secret information" is used to justify holding citizens in administrative detention. People have been released because it turned out that the information was mistaken. We hope this situation will be resolved with the returning of the boy to his parents' home."  


7. BRAVERY & PERSEVERANCE: WOMAN WOUNDED BY TERRORIST GIVES BIRTH
by Arutz Sheva Staff

Five months ago, a knife-wielding terrorist entered a clothing store in the town of Tekoa in Gush Etzion, and stabbed the pregnant Michal Froman in her upper body. She was evacuated to Jerusalem's Sha'arei Tzedek hospital in moderate condition. Yesterday (Saturday), she gave birth to a healthy baby daughter.

Froman is the daughter-in-law of the late R' Menachem Froman, the Rabbi of Tekoa, who was famous for the unique combination of being both a settler and a champion of negotiations and interfaith dialogue with the Palestinians. 

In an interview with 'Galei Tzahal' Froman said that every crisis brings with it the opportunity to find the positive and embark on a new journey. "I often think about what God was trying to tell me with this attack", she said.

Froman's husband wrote a facebook post detailing his thoughts and feelings about the birth of his daughter. "For 4 months already since the stabbing I've been wondering if we'll have a 'hilltop youth' girl or an extreme Leftist. Turns out she's just a bundle of sweetness. Of sweetness and serenity.

"It seems it'll take us a while to convince her that there are conflicts in the world. In the meantime she and I are both filled with admiration for her mother, who once again surprised us with a show of strength from suffering, and finding the good in a crisis. I thank God for everything."    



8. CAR RAMMING ATTACK NEAR KIRYAT ARBA
by Arutz Sheva Staff

A Jewish Israeli couple in their 50s were lightly injured in a car ramming attack at the entrance to the town of Kiryat Arba, next to Hevron.

The victims were treated at the scene by paramedics before being transferred to hospital for further treatment.

The terrorist - a Palestinian woman - was shot dead at the scene by alert soldiers.

Her attack was recorded by nearby CCTV cameras: 

[video:2016501]

The Hevron/Kiryat Arba region in Judea south of Jerusalem had been a hotbed of stabbing and car ramming attacks over the past several months, but terrorist incidents had significantly decreased in the past few weeks.

The recent "wave of terror" has calmed down considerably overall throughout Israel, but Arab terrorists have still conducted periodic attacks, including the recent murder of four people at Tel Aviv's Sarona Market.

More recently, three people were injured last week in a rock-throwing attack which targeted a bus traveling through Jerusalem.




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