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Israel Approves Gaza Flotilla Inquiry Panel

JERUSALEM (JTA) -- Israel's Cabinet unanimously approved a commission of inquiry into the interception of a Gaza-bound flotilla that left nine passengers dead.

Two foreign observers were named to the commission.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said during Monday's meeting to approve the independent public commission that its establishment "will make it clear to the entire world that the State of Israel acts according to the law, transparently, and with full responsibility."

Mossad Agent Reportedly Arrested in Poland

06/13/2010

BERLIN (JTA) -- An alleged Mossad spy wanted in Germany in connection with the assassination of a Hamas official in Dubai was arrested in Poland.

The arrest earlier this month of Uri Brodsky, and his possible extradition to Germany, could lead to a diplomatic row between Germany and Israel, according to reports. The arrest was made public Saturday.

Jewish Leaders Press Abbas on Direct Talks, Incitement

06/10/2010

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Jewish leaders pressed Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on the issues of incitement and direct talks.

Abbas met for dinner Wednesday evening with an array of the national Jewish leadership under the auspices of the Center for Middle East Peace. The meeting came after he met with President Obama at the White House.

The major topic of the evening was Abbas' reluctance to advance from proximity talks, brokered by the United States, to direct talks with Israel. Both the Obama and Netanyahu administrations favor direct talks.

Obama Says Gaza Situation ‘Unsustainable,’ Pledges $400 Million

06/10/2010
JTA

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- President Obama said the situation in the Gaza Strip was "unsustainable" and that he would budget an additional $400 million to improve conditions there and in the West Bank.

Obama and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in a meeting here Wednesday discussed the aftermath of Israel's deadly raid last week on a Turkish-flagged ship ferrying aid and activists to Gaza Strip in order to break Israel's blockade of the strip.

1,000 Turn Out For Pro-Israel Rally Here

06/09/2010
Staff Writer

A light rain fell as hundreds of New Yorkers rallied across the street from the Israeli Consulate in Manhattan Wednesday to voice their support for the embattled Jewish state in the wake of the Gaza flotilla deaths.

“This is a consensus rally,” said Rabbi Avi Weiss, the founder of AMCHA-The Coalition for Jewish Concerns. “Israel is facing an existential threat. It’s important for everyone to express solidarity with Israel.”

Orthodox Union Leaders Meet With White House Staff, Senators

06/09/2010

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Leaders of the Orthodox Union met with top administration officials and with U.S. senators.

Members of synagogues and organizations affiliated with the umbrella body met Wednesday with top National Security Council staff and discussed the U.S.-Israel relationship, the peace process and Iran sanctions, as well as education and energy policy.

The Orthodox Union has been among the sharpest critics of Obama administration pressure on Israel to freeze building in eastern Jerusalem.

U.N. Security Council Passes Iran Sanctions

06/09/2010

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- The United Nations Security Council passed new sanctions against Iran, setting the stage for new and tougher U.S. sanctions.

The vote Wednesday was a victory for U.S.-led efforts to garner international support for isolating the regime until it makes its nuclear program more transparent.

Key to its passage was the support of China and Russia, both major traders with Iran and veto-wielding members of the council.

Obama: Thomas Was Right to Resign

06/08/2010

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- President Obama said the decision to resign by journalist Helen Thomas was the right thing to do.

Thomas, a columnist with the Hearst Corp., ended a career spanning six decades and 10 presidents on Monday in the wake of criticism of her remarks that Jews in Israel should "go home" to Poland and Germany.

Netanyahu, Obama to Meet at End of June

06/08/2010

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will meet in Washington with President Obama at the end of the month.

Israeli officials told Jewish groups Tuesday that Netanyahu would be in the U.S. capital on June 28-29.

Netanyahu had been scheduled to meet with Obama last week, but was diverted by the fallout of Israel's deadly raid on a Turkish-flagged ship attempting to break Israel's blockade of Gaza.

Obama and Netanyahu both want to upgrade U.S.-brokered "proximity" talks between Israel and the Palestinians to direct talks.

Taitz, 'Birther Movement' Founder, Seeks Republican Jewish Support

06/08/2010

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- The founder of the "birther movement" sought Republican Jewish support for her candidacy for California secretary of state.

Orly Taitz attended the Republican Jewish Coalition's California division's annual "summer bash" last weekend.

Taitz has earned notoriety for heading the movement based on the false assertion that President Obama was not born in the United States. She has been censured in court while representing troops who refuse to take orders from the "de facto" president, as she calls Obama.

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