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Hamas, Fatah Formally Sign Unity Pact

05/04/2011

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.

Israel Air Traffic Resumes Using Emergency Fuel Supply

05/03/2011
Staff Writer

Most air traffic in Israel resumed Friday morning using emergency jet fuel supplies after the discovery Thursday of contaminated jet fuel at airports throughout the country. It forced the shutdown of all airplane refueling at Ben-Gurion Airport, causing the cancelation of scores of flights.

Terrorism and sabotage were both ruled out, according to media reports.

When air traffic resumed Friday morning, planes were loaded with enough fuel to allow them to fly to Cyprus or Jordan, where they were then loaded with enough fuel for their scheduled trip.

Katsav Prison Sentence Postponed

05/03/2011

JERUSALEM (JTA) – Israel's Supreme Court has postponed the date former President Moshe Katsav will begin serving his prison sentence on rape and sexual assault convictions.

Katsav had been scheduled to enter prison next week to serve a seven-year sentence; on Monday he appealed his conviction on rape and sexual assault charges and requested a delay of his prison sentence, which was granted by the court Tuesday.

U.S. Holocaust Museum Presenting Roll Call of Victims

05/02/2011

(JTA) -- Holocaust survivors and members of the public are reading the names of Holocaust victims at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington.

The reading at the museum's Hall of Remembrance began Sunday and will last through May 8.

During the Days of Remembrance, May 1-8, the museum is commemorating the 6 million Jews killed in the Holocaust, as well as the millions of other victims of Nazi persecution, with observances in Washington and throughout the United States.

Bin Laden’s Killing Raises Immediate Security Questions

05/02/2011
JTA

NEW YORK (JTA) – For years after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, many Americans waited in fear for the next strike by al-Qaida on U.S. soil. But the ensuing decade has seen no more major terrorist attacks in the United States.

Now, with the news that Osama bin Laden has been killed in Pakistan by U.S. forces, the question many American Jews are considering is whether the liquidation of al-Qaida’s leader makes a follow-up attack more or less likely, and whether Jews could be a target.

Jewish Social Justice Groups Set to Merge

05/01/2011

SAN FRANCISCO (JTA) -- Two Jewish social justice organizations -- The Progressive Jewish Alliance and Jewish Funds for Justice -- have decided to merge.

The groups will announce the merger officially May 26 at a fundraising gala, along with details about what the move will mean to each organization. The merger will take place later this year.

Leaders of both organizations say the move is a strategic outgrowth of their shared goals and highlights their belief that “achieving significant, sustained change requires close partnerships.”

Israel Marks Holocaust Remembrance Day

05/01/2011

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.

San Francisco Circumcision Ban Likely for November Ballot

04/29/2011

SAN FRANCISCO (JTA) -- A proposal to ban circumcision in San Francisco looks likely for the November ballot.

A group opposed to male circumcision told Reuters that it had collected more than enough signatures on petitions to qualify their proposal for the Nov. 8 vote.

The measure, which would apply only in the city of San Francisco, would make it a misdemeanor crime to circumcise a boy before he is 18 years old. The maximum penalty would be a year in jail and a $1,000 fine. Circumcisions would be permitted only for medical reasons.

Abbas: Palestinians Will Continue to Negotiate Peace

04/28/2011

JERUSALEM (JTA) -- The Palestinians will continue to negotiate peace with Israel despite a unity agreement with the terrorist Hamas organization, Mahmoud Abbas said.

Abbas, president of the Palestinian Authority, told reporters Thursday that the Palestine Liberation Organization that he heads will continue to be responsible for handling negotiations, Haaretz reported. Hamas is not a member of the PLO.

Abbas' comments came a day after his Fatah movement and Hamas, which controls Gaza, announced that they had reconciled, following a meeting in Cairo.

Some Are Abusing Title VI Protections, AJC Charges

04/27/2011

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- The American Jewish Committee said a government decision to classify campus anti-Semitism as prohibited discrimination is being abused by those seeking to silence criticism of Israel.

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