Briefs

Jewish Mogul To Run For President Of Ukraine

03/26/2014

Ukrainian Jewish businessman Vadim Rabinovich announced his candidacy for president of Ukraine in the May elections.

Hungarian Official Reassures Jews on Bris And Kashout

03/26/2014

 A Hungarian official said his government is committed to safeguarding religious freedoms, including circumcision and kosher slaughter.

Ferenc Kumin, a government spokesman, delivered the assurances Monday at a news conference by Nir Natan, a representative of the Brussels-based European Jewish Association.

“In the past couple of years there has been a surge of legislation in Europe, mainly bans on circumcision and ritual, kosher slaughter,” Natan said, then asked if it could also happen in Hungary.

“You can quote me when I say that no, for sure not,” Kumin said. “It’s not on the agenda and if it’s put there, we will stop it.”

The meeting was part of the two-day biannual conference of the Rabbinical Centre of Europe this week in Budapest. Hundreds of Orthodox rabbis came to the Hungarian capital as the campaign for general elections on April 6 reached its apex.

“What we are interested in is to make the Jewish renaissance grow bigger and to show to the world that the Jewish community here enjoys nothing but freedom,” said Kumin, who represents the government of Viktor Orban, head of the conservative Fidesz party, which is expected to win with at least 36 percent of the vote.

Orban’s government rejects allegations by critics that it is trying to whitewash Hungary’s Holocaust-era culpability and is too lenient on expressions of anti-Semitism.

“The government has a zero tolerance policy on anti-Semitism,” Kumin said.

Rabbi Menachem Margolin, the rabbinical centre’s director general, credited the government with “doing a lot for the Jewish community, and not only ahead of elections.” He also lauded the government for its resolve to allow Jewish rituals “that help sustain the incredible vibrancy” of Hungary’s Jewish community.

Hillel: Harvard Students’ Visit To Arafat’s Grave ‘Causing Understandable Concern’

03/26/2014

(JNS.org) Hillel International responded to growing criticism over a visit by Harvard University students on a Hillel-sponsored tour of Israel to former Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat’s grave near Ramallah.

Missing Rockland Man Found Dead In Park

03/26/2014

The body of a missing father of seven was found inside his car in a ravine in an upstate New York park.

Peretz Sontag, 50, of Pomona in suburban Rockland County, was found dead Sunday by a hiker in Harriman State Park. The cause of death is not known.

Limited Shabbat Shopping In Tel Aviv

03/26/2014

Tel Aviv will permit a limited number of grocery and convenience stores to stay open on the Sabbath and holidays.

The municipality’s City Council approved an amendment on Monday giving the stores the go-ahead, but the country’s Interior Ministry also must approve.

JPost Scribe Barred From Saudi Arabia

03/26/2014

The White House said it was “deeply disappointed” that Saudi Arabia denied a visa to a Jewish American reporter working for The Jerusalem Post.

Report: U.S. May Free Pollard To Try To Save Israeli-Palestinian Talks

03/26/2014

(JNS.org) In order to break a deadlock in the current Israeli-Palestinian conflict negotiations, U.S. officials are reportedly not ruling out a proposal by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu under which Israel would agree to accept Secretary of State John Kerry’s framework peace proposal and free Israeli Arab terrorists from jail in exchange for the U.S. releasing imprisoned Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard.

Facebook Picks New CEO In Israel

03/19/2014
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Facebook announced Monday that it has appointed Adi Soffer-Teeni as the company’s CEO in Israel.
The current executive chairman of the grammar and spell-checking program Ginger Software, Soffer-Teeni will head Facebook’s commercial operations in Israel and help clients and agencies develop their marketing strategies at the social network. She will focus on building up the company’s team at its Ramat Gan offices, and will work closely with Facebook’s Israeli team in Dublin.

Missing Malaysian Plane Spurs Alert In Israel

03/19/2014
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Air traffic controllers in Israel have reportedly been ordered to use extreme cautionary measures to identify incoming aircraft as the hunt continues for a missing Malaysian jetliner that disappeared March 9.

Four IDF Soldiers Hurt In Golan Blast

03/19/2014
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Four Israeli soldiers patrolling the border with Syria were injured, one seriously, when a roadside bomb was detonated next to their jeep.

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