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Calif. Congressman to Introduce Bill Protecting Circumcision

06/15/2011 - 20:00

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- U.S. Rep. Brad Sherman will introduce a bill to prevent cities from banning male circumcision, the California lawmaker's office said.

Sherman's bill, which his office announced Tuesday, comes in response to a measure that qualified recently for the November ballot in San Francisco that would outlaw the circumcision of males under the age of 18, making it punishable by a $1,000 fine and a one-year prison term.

U.S. Official: Cutting U.N. Funds Harms Israel, U.S. Interests

06/15/2011 - 20:00

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- A top U.S. official outlined U.S.-Israel cooperation at the United Nations and argued that cutting funding to the body would be detrimental to the interests of both countries.

Poll: Americans’ Views on Mideast Largely Unchanged

06/13/2011 - 20:00

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Americans' views on Middle East issues have not changed in recent months, despite major headlines from the region, according to a new poll.

Arson Attack Victim Files Suit Against Chasidic Sect’s Grand Rabbi

06/13/2011 - 20:00

NEW YORK (JTA) -- The family of a man badly burned in an alleged arson attack filed a lawsuit against the grand rabbi of the Chasidic village of New Square, N.Y., accusing him of directing and condoning a campaign of harassment against them.

The suit, filed Monday in New York State Supreme Court on behalf of Aron Rottenberg and his family, lists two defendants: Shaul Spitzer, 18, the alleged arsonist; and David Twersky, the rebbe of the Skverer Chasidic sect. It urges the court to level an $18 million judgement agaisnt each of the two defendants.

Fischer Candidacy to Head IMF Disqualified

06/13/2011 - 20:00

JERUSALEM (JTA) -- Stanley Fischer, the governor of the Bank of Israel, will not be considered a candidate to lead the International Monetary Fund because of his age.

Fischer was notified Monday night that his announced candidacy for the position was disqualified since he is 67, and IMF rules state that the IMF Managing Director must be under 65 when taking office for the five-year position. Fischer had hoped that the IMF board would waive the restriction, saying it is "not relevant today."

Protesters in N.Y. Picket Companies Dealing with Iran

06/12/2011 - 20:00

NEW YORK (JTA) -- Protesters demonstrated outside the New York headquarters of several companies accused of conducting business with Iran.

Demonstrators from Iran 180 and United against Nuclear Iran, two groups promoting a democratic Iran, rallied June 10 in Midtown Manhattan, booing a large papier mache construction of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Eni Corp., one of the companies being picketed, sent down a spokesperson to declare the Italian energy company's plans to officially cease doing business with Iran.

Jacobs Unanimously Elected to Lead Reform Jews

06/12/2011 - 20:00

(JTA) -- The Board of Trustees of the Union for Reform Judaism unanimously elected Rabbi Richard Jacobs to serve as its next president.

Jacob's election on Sunday makes him the fourth person to hold the office since its creation in 1943. Previous presidents were Rabbis Maurice Eisendrath, Alexander Schindler and Eric Yoffie.

Jacobs currently serves as Senior Rabbi at Westchester Reform Temple in Scarsdale, NY, and will assume the presidency of the Union for Reform Judaism in 2012.He was nominated earlier this year.

Alleged Israeli Spy Arrested in Egypt is U.S. Citizen

06/12/2011 - 20:00

JERUSALEM (JTA) -- An alleged Israeli spy arrested in Egypt has been identified by Israeli media as an American citizen who made aliyah in 2005.

Egyptian authorities arrested Ilan Grapel at his hotel in central Cairo on Sunday; Grapel was ordered detained for 15 days while he is investigated for allegedly "spying on Egypt with the aim of damaging its economic and political interests," Egypt's official MENA news agency reported.

Alleged Israeli Spy Arrested in Egypt is U.S. Citizen

06/12/2011 - 20:00

JERUSALEM (JTA) -- An alleged Israeli spy arrested in Egypt has been identified by Israeli media as an American citizen who made aliyah in 2005.

Egyptian authorities arrested Ilan Grapel at his hotel in central Cairo on Sunday; Grapel was ordered detained for 15 days while he is investigated for allegedly "spying on Egypt with the aim of damaging its economic and political interests," Egypt's official MENA news agency reported.

Israel Bank’s Fischer Running for Top IMF Job

06/11/2011 - 20:00

JERUSALEM (JTA) -- Stanley Fischer, the governor of the Bank of Israel, has thrown his hat into the ring to lead the International Monetary Fund.

Fischer, 67, is in the second year of his second five-year term as the head of Israel's central bank. He announced his bid to lead the IMF over the weekend.

He is looking to fill the position vacated by Dominique Strauss-Kahn of France, who resigned after his arrest on May 14 on charges of attempted rape of a maid in a New York hotel.

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