WASHINGTON (JTA) -- President Obama reportedly is planning a new speech to the Muslim world that would call for a rejection of Islamic militancy.
The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday that the White House is planning for such a speech within the next two weeks, just as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is set to roll out proposals for reviving peace talks with the Palestinians in a meeting with Obama and in a speech to the U.S. Congress.
JERUSALEM (JTA) -- With a minute-long siren and moment of silence in memory of its war dead, Israel began its observance of Memorial Day, or Yom Hazikaron.
The annual observance of Remembrance Day for Israel's Fallen Soldiers and Victims of Terrorism is in memory of the nearly 23,000 men and women who have fallen in battle for the State of Israel and the some 2,500 other Israelis who have been victims of terrorist attacks.
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- A delegation of Democratic members of the U.S. House of Representatives led by Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), the minority leader, arrived in Israe and met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahul.
The sides discussed "U.S.-Israel relations and regional security issues," said a statement Sunday, after the delegation arrived.
JERUSALEM (JTA) -- Palestinian rival factions Fatah and Hamas in a formal ceremony signed a unity agreement, repairing a four-year rift.
The ceremony Wednesday in Cairo was delayed for two hours after a question about whether the head of the Islamist Hamas, Khaled Meshaal, should sit on stage and if he would speak at the event.
The signing of the unity deal turns "the black page of division," Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, the head of the Fatah party, said following the signing at the Egyptian intelligence headquarters.
Foreign policy victory in bin Laden killing may not lead to new peace initiatives.
James D. Besser
The death of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden at the hands of elite U.S. forces was a boost for a president with few foreign policy achievements to his credit. But it will do little to ease the foreign policy and political conundrums his administration faces in a changing Middle East, and in some cases may add new complications.
While the Palestinian Authority supported the U.S. action, Hamas quickly condemned the killing of a “holy warrior.”
JERUSALEM (JTA) -- "Israel is the historical commemoration to the victims of the Holocaust," President Shimon Peres said at a Yad Vashem ceremony marking Yom Hashoah.
Holocaust Martyrs' and Heroes' Remembrance Day, or Yom Hashoah, began Sunday night in Israel with the national ceremony, where survivors lit six torches representing the 6 million Jews killed in the Holocaust.
Among the other rites to commemorate the day will be one remembering Jews who rescued other Jews from the Nazis.
Wednesday’s Hamas-Fatah reconciliation agreement, the result of secret negotiations in Cairo over a period of weeks, is yet another complication for an Obama administration facing a tidal wave of political change in the Middle East and new international pressure to resume active Israeli-Palestinian mediation.
According to press reports, the deal includes the creation of an interim government and elections to be called within a year.
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- A bipartisan delegation of U.S. House of Representatives lawmakers is in Israel this week.
The delegation, including Reps. Ted Deutch (D-Fla.), Dennis Cardoza (D-Calif.), Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.), Jack Kingston (R-Ga.), Allyson Schwartz (D-Pa.), John Barrow (D-Ga.), Tim Murphy (R-Pa.), Ben Chandler (D-Ky.), and Larry Kissell (D-N.C.) had meetings planned with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and opposition leader Tzipi Livni.
They also planned to tour areas in Israel subject to rocket fire from the Gaza Strip.