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French teen with jihadist aspirations says she was told to kill Jews

Thu, 10/02/2014 - 11:43

(JTA) — A French teenager who wanted to join jihadists in Syria said her handlers instructed her to commit attacks on Jews in France.

The testimony of the 15-year-old girl, who was arrested last month after her parents alerted police to her plans, appeared Thursday in Le Nouvel Observateur weekly. The magazine referred to her only as Lea, which is not her real name.

The report said that she was born to a nonreligious family and raised in southern France.

A juvenile court placed her under arrest and forbade her from leaving the country after her parents read her plans on her personal computer.

The article in the weekly did not say what restrictions if any exist on her freedom of movement or other liberties.

In the interview, Lea said she communicated for months with individuals who contacted her on Facebook. None of them were named. She also met with at least two handlers who allegedly helped prepare fake documents for her ahead of her planned journey to Syria.

But at one point, one of her handlers told her she could not travel to Syria after all and would need to commit an attack against Jews on French soil.

“They told me: ‘it’s no use, you’ve got too much of a record to ever come, so now the action needs to take place in France,’” the girl told the weekly. “They started showing me videos of dead children in Palestine, telling me about the need to act against the Jews.”

According to her testimony, the girl was under pressure to commit a suicide attack against Jewish targets or an attack resembling that of Mohamed Merah, the Muslim radical who murdered three children and a rabbi at a Jewish day school in Toulouse in 2012.

“A woman talked to me about it for the first time. I found the place, ways to get weapons. I don’t know if I would’ve been able to go through with it,” she said.


2 Palestinians arrested in West Bank terror attack plot

Thu, 10/02/2014 - 11:28

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Two Palestinian men were arrested at a West Bank checkpoint on suspicion of planning a terror attack.

The men, in their early 20s, were found to be carrying three pipe bombs, a homemade gun and several knives when they were stopped Thursday at the Tapuah Junction in the northern West Bank. They were taken in for questioning by the Shin Bet security service.

Several Palestinian terrorist attacks have been thwarted in recent months at the Tapuah Junction, which is near the Ariel settlement.

Also on Thursday afternoon, two Jewish-Israeli girls were injured when the car in which they were traveling through eastern Jerusalem’s A-Tur neighborhood was pelted with rocks.

Jerusalem’s Barkat raps White House rebuke on housing approval

Thu, 10/02/2014 - 08:22

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat rejected White House criticism of building housing in a Jewish neighborhood in eastern Jerusalem.

“I say this firmly and clearly: Building in Jerusalem is not poisonous and harmful – rather, it is essential, important and will continue with full force,” Barkat said Thursday in a statement. “I will not freeze construction for anyone in Israel’s capital. Discrimination based on religion, race or gender is illegal in the United States and in any other civilized country.”

A day earlier, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said that a plan that was granted final approval in December 2012 for the construction of 2,610 housing units in the Givat Hamatos neighborhood would “poison the atmosphere” and distance Israel from “even its closest allies.”

Barkat said the apartments there “will enable more young people from all sectors and religions to live in Jerusalem and build their future here, thereby strengthening the capital of Israel. We will not apologize for that. ”

The plan was published last week, allowing for tenders to be issued and construction to start. It was publicized Wednesday by Peace Now two hours before a scheduled meeting between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Obama.

Following the meeting, Netanyahu slammed Peace Now for its timing in releasing the news, calling it “irresponsible” and saying the activist NGO had timed the statement to harm his talks with Obama.

Netanyahu also rejected the criticism, saying the White House should make sure it understands the situation properly “before deciding to take a position like that.”

Peace Now Executive Director Yariv Oppenheimer said, “Netanyahu has only himself to blame. He is responsible for authorizing building in sensitive areas. The prime minister should reserve for himself and his ministers his frustration over the destructive impact of his policies on Israel foreign relations.”

Lancet editor says he ‘deeply regrets’ polarizing letter on Gaza

Thu, 10/02/2014 - 07:29

JERUSALEM (JTA) — The editor of The Lancet said in Israel that he “deeply regrets” the divisiveness caused by the open letter published in the British medical journal accusing Israel of a “massacre” in Gaza.

Dr. Richard Horton in a statement Thursday at the Rambam Medical Center in Haifa said that he “deeply, deeply regrets the completely unnecessary polarization” caused by the letter published in July to the people of Gaza during this summer’s conflict in the coastal strip between Israel and Hamas. Several dozen physicians from the West signed the letter, which also accused Israel of “cruel” and “vicious war crimes.” Physicians, researchers and Israeli officials decried the letter.

NGO Monitor, a Jerusalem-based research institute that monitors nongovernmental organizations, last week unearthed evidence tying two of the letters’ authors to support for David Duke, who circulated a video supporting the white supremacist.

Horton also said he was “personally horrified at the offensive video that was forwarded by two of the authors of that letter. The worldview expressed in that video is abhorrent and must be condemned, and I condemn it.”

After a round of applause, he continued, “I will be publishing what I have just said in The Lancet next week.” Horton did not say specifically that he would retract the letter.

In his statement at Rambam, which he also visited earlier in the week, Horton condemned contributors to The Lancet who promote explicitly anti-Semitic materials, expressed a new understanding of Israeli realities including the complexities of the Arab-Israel conflict, and pledged a new relationship with Israel.

He called the incident “a turning point in my relationship with Israel” and said that his visit was “a fresh start for a different future.”

Horton also invited Israelis to “tell the Israeli health story” in The Lancet in parallel to the Palestinians.

Following his remarks, NGO Monitor said in a statement that it was “urgent that the letter be removed from The Lancet’s website and a formal retraction and apology be published prominently, both on the website and the next hard copy issue.”



Mila Kunis gives birth to girl

Thu, 10/02/2014 - 06:35

(JTA) — Jewish actress Mila Kunis gave birth to a girl.

The baby was born Tuesday night at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. The father is Kunis’ fiancee, actor Ashton Kutcher.

Kunis said in interviews before her delivery that she would take a break from acting to be a full-time mother.

Sources close to Kunis told media outlets before her pregnancy was announced that she planned to have children and raise them Jewish.

Kutcher is a follower of the Kabbalah movement and reportedly keeps kosher.

Fire hits 18th-century Romanian Jewish cemetery

Thu, 10/02/2014 - 05:47

(JTA) — One of Romania’s oldest Jewish cemeteries was hit by fire that consumed some 50 acres.

The fire spread on Monday through the Jewish cemetery of Iasi, which opened in the 18th century and contains 80,000 graves, the local news website ziaruldeiasi.ro reported. It consumed dense vegetation that grew between headstones, the result of many years of neglect.

Firefighters put out the blaze and stopping it from spreading. The report did not say how many headstones were damaged and to what extent.

The fire may have been started by locals who periodically burn dry vegetation as a way of clearing agricultural land and preventing uncontrolled fires, according to the news site.

A similar fire in 2012 consumed large parts of the Jewish cemetery in Iasi’s Pacurari district, damaging several dozen headstones. Footage from that fire showed ancient graves surrounded by flames that fed off a thick bed of dry grass, twigs and dead trees.

Iasi used to be among the centers of Jewish life in Romania until its entire Jewish population was annihilated in 1941 in a series of pogroms perpetrated by locals and through the deportation of Jews to Nazi-run and local concentration and death camps.

The cemetery of Iasi features a monument in memory of the 15,000 Jews murdered by locals in pogroms. More than 350,000 Jews were murdered in areas held by pro-Nazi Romanian troops during World War II. The country currently has approximately 6,000 Jews, according to the European Jewish Congress.

In 2012, the Council of Europe adopted a nonbinding resolution placing responsibility for the care of Jewish cemeteries on national governments. The resolution was based on a report on Jewish cemeteries that noted instances in which cemeteries in Eastern Europe have been turned into “residential areas, public gardens, leisure parks, army grounds and storage sites; some have been turned into lakes.”

El Al may be violating U.S. law, N.Y. rabbi says

Thu, 10/02/2014 - 05:30

NEW YORK (JTA) — A New York rabbi-attorney claimed that some El Al Airlines’ policies may violate U.S. law in the wake of delays on flights because haredi Orthodox men refused to sit next to women.

Rabbi Iris Richman, posting Tuesday on the Facebook page of Jewish Voices Together, cited a federal law that states “An air carrier or foreign air carrier may not subject a person in air transportation to discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, or ancestry.”

Richman told Haaretz that she called the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Aviation Consumer Protection Division and was informed that the department was “willing to investigate any situation where any employee of a carrier, i.e steward/ess participated in asking someone to change a seat because of their gender.”

Her post followed two days after the launch of an online petition calling on El Al to provide a small section of gender-segregated seats for an extra fee. More than 3,000 people have signed the petition, which also charges that the Israeli airline permits “female passengers to be bullied, harassed and intimidated into switching seats which they rightfully paid for and were assigned to.”

El Al maintains that it does not discriminate against passengers. An airline spokeswoman told Haaretz, “Our policy in general is to try to accommodate any customer request.”

White House rebukes Israel over eastern Jerusalem building

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 15:48

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Israel’s go-ahead for new housing in eastern Jerusalem would “poison the atmosphere” and distance Israel from “even its closest allies,” the White House said.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest delivered the unusually sharp remarks on Wednesday, just after President Obama concluded a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Earnest said Obama raised the topic with Netanyahu.

“The United States is deeply concerned by reports that the Israeli government has moved forward with the planning process in a sensitive area of East Jerusalem,” Earnest told reporters in the daily briefing.

Earlier Wednesday, the Peace Now organization reported that a plan that was granted final approval in December 2012 for the construction of 2,610 housing units in the Jewish eastern Jerusalem neighborhood of Givat Hamatos was published last week. Publication of the plan allows tenders to be issued and construction to start.

“This development will only draw condemnation from the international community, distance Israel from even its closest allies, poison the atmosphere not only with the Palestinians but also with the very Arab governments with which Prime Minister Netanyahu said he wanted to build relations,” Earnest said, referring to recent proposals by Netanyahu that Israel first broker peace with its Arab neighbors before it finalizes an agreement with the Palestinains.

“It would also call into question Israel’s ultimate commitment to a peaceful negotiated settlement with the Palestinians,” he said.

Earnest also condemned the recent move into Silwan, a Palestinian neighborhood in eastern Jerusalem adjacent to the Old City, by Jewish families associated with an activist group, describing the activists’ agenda as one that “by definition stokes tension between Israelis and Palestinians.”

“Givat Hamatos is destructive to the two states solution,” Peace Now said in a statement on its website. “It divides the potential Palestinian state and blocks the possibility to connect the Palestinian neighborhoods in south Jerusalem with the future Palestinian state. Netanyahu continues his policy to destroy the possibility of a two state solution. He is doing so in the West Bank, and he is doing so in East Jerusalem.”

Separately, on Tuesday afternoon, masked Palestinians reportedly threw rocks and fireworks at a preschool in a Jewish neighborhood of the Mount of Olives in eastern Jerusalem.

The children, who were playing on the playground, were rushed into the building’s bomb shelter for protection, Ynet reported.

Palestinians targeting late 2016 for Israel’s West Bank withdrawal

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 15:20

JERUSALEM (JTA) — The Palestinians will ask the United Nations Security Council to set a deadline of November 2016 for an Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank and eastern Jerusalem.

The request is part of a draft resolution that has been circulated to members of the Security Council, The Associated Press reported Wednesday. AP obtained a copy of the draft.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said during his address to the U.N. General Assembly last week that he would ask the council to set a deadline for an Israeli withdrawal from territory captured by Israel in 1967.

The resolution calls for a two-state solution based on the pre-1967 borders. It also seeks “a just resolution” of the status of Jerusalem as the capital of two states and of the Palestinian refugee problem, including through negotiations, AP reported.

Abbas told a meeting of the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah on Wednesday evening that the resolution was submitted last Friday, the day he addressed the General Assembly, according to AP.


Fliers posted at UC Santa Barbara blame Jews for 9/11

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 14:25

LOS ANGELES (JTA) — A series of fliers posted on the campus of the University of California, Santa Barbara, accused Jews of being behind the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

The fliers, which appeared around campus during last weekend when students were moving in for the fall semester, declared that “9/11 Was an Outside Job,” with a large blue Star of David. The text urged readers to visit websites arguing that the attacks were the result of an international Zionist conspiracy and to Google terms such as “9/11 Was Mossad.”

Rabbi Evan Goodman, executive director of UC Santa Barbara’s Hillel, estimated that up to 10 fliers were posted around campus, the Los Angeles Jewish Journal reported. In a posting on the blog for the Santa Barbara Hillel, Goodman said that Hillel and university staff along with students had taken down the fliers, and that there was no indication that any students or student groups had put them up.

Goodman’s post noted that the first student to take down a flier and bring it to Hillel was a Muslim student leader. He also said that the “UCSB administration has been prompt and proactive in their response to these postings.”

B’Tselem OK again as Israel national service stop

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 14:16

JERUSALEM (JTA) — The Israeli human rights group B’Tselem will again be allowed to receive national service volunteers.

On Tuesday, Deputy Attorney General Dina Zilber overturned the ban instituted on the group in August by the head of Israel’s national service program. Sar-Shalom Jerbi objected to B’Tselem’s actions during the Gaza conflict.

The program coordinates placements for young Israelis doing national civilian service as an alternative to military service.

Earlier this year, Jerbi said national civilian service would be available “only to bodies that do not subvert the existence of the state as a Jewish and democratic state.”

Zilber said that Jerbi can only remove national service volunteers if the organization rejects Israel’s existence as a Jewish and democratic state, incites to violence, terror or racism, or supports terrorism or armed struggle against Israel, Haaretz reported.

B’Tselem has received one volunteer each year through the program since 2012, according to Haaretz.

Polish Jewish group planning cemetery memorial

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 13:54

(JTA) – An organization in Wronki, Poland, is creating a lapidarium-style memorial at the site of a destroyed Jewish cemetery in town.

The project of the Wronki Jewish Lapidarium Association involves about 800 Jewish gravestones or fragments recovered several years ago from two cemeteries razed by the Nazis during World War II. It aims to piece together broken stones and arrange them in several areas of the cemetery site.

The gravestones and fragments had been documented last year and put into order by students from Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan. Two local historians and inmates from a nearby prison aided the effort.

Most of the approximately $20,000 in financing for the memorial has been secured, mainly via European Union funds, according to the association.

The group is crowdsourcing the final funding via a Polish website that is similar to Kickstarter.

Poland’s chief rabbi and the Roman Catholic archbishop of Poznan, as well as municipal officials, are backing the memorial.


Car explodes at Atlantic City synagogue

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 13:34

A view of Congregation Rodef Sholom in Atlantic City, N.J. (Google Street View)

(JTA) – A synagogue leader’s car exploded in a suspected arson attack in Atlantic City, N.J.

In the wee hours of Saturday morning, several hours after the close of Rosh Hashanah, police discovered a Ford Explorer engulfed in flames outside Congregation Rodef Sholom, an Orthodox shul. The fire caused severe damage to the parking lot and the synagogue’s outer walls, according to the Jewish Exponent of Philadelphia.

The car belonged to David Kushner, who serves as spiritual leader of the southern New Jersey synagogue though he is not an ordained rabbi. Kushner, who runs a wedding hall in Lakewood, N.J., learned about the fire when he showed up for Sabbath services the next morning.

“The car had been towed overnight immediately after the incident by the Fire Department for further investigation, so I saw charred remains,” Kushner told the Jewish Exponent, which quoted Kushner as saying that firemen were examining whether the blaze was a hate crime.

The synagogue hasn’t had any previous occurrences of anti-Semitism, the newspaper said.

“The fact that in America in 2014, a rabbi’s car parked at his synagogue during Rosh Hashanah services could be engulfed in flames and the subject of arson is beyond comprehension,” Nancy Baron-Baer, the Anti-Defamation League’s regional director, told the Jewish Exponent. “Synagogues need to be alert every day.”

Three Israeli soldiers who fought in Gaza committed suicide

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 12:05

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Three Israeli soldiers who fought in Israel’s Gaza operation have committed suicide in recent weeks.

The soldiers, all from the Givati Brigade, used their army-issue weapons to take their lives, according to reports. The weapons were found next to the soldiers’ bodies.

A reservist also committed suicide during his reserve duty replacing troops who were sent to Gaza.

One of the Givati troops was lone soldier David Gordon from Ohio, whose body was found with his weapon beside him in a ditch after he was missing for two days.

The Israeli military’s criminal investigation division is looking into the incidents.

Netanyahu urges Obama to lead on preventing Iran nukes

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 12:00

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told President Obama he hoped that Iran would not come close to acquiring a nuclear weapon under Obama’s watch.

Netanyahu, who met with Obama on Wednesday at the White House, said that a deal now under consideration providing sanctions relief for a nuclear rollback could leave Iran a “threshold nuclear power.”

“I firmly hope that under your leadership that will not happen,” Netanyahu said at the outset of the meeting.

Obama administration officials in recent weeks have said there has been progress in talks between Iran and the major powers aimed at keeping Iran from having the capacity to develop a nuclear weapon.

Western officials say that Iran likely will be allowed to enrich uranium to limited amounts, not near weaponization, under a deal. Israel says any enrichment capability leaves Iran on the threshold of weapon making.

The deadline for the talks is Nov. 24.

Obama told Netanyahu that the Israeli-Palestinian peace process remains a priority, despite the collapse of talks in April.

The U.S. leader referred to this summer’s conflict between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

“We have to find a way to change the status quo so that both Israeli citizens are safe in their own homes,” Obama said, “but also that we don’t have the tragedy of Palestinian children being killed as well. And so we’ll discuss extensively both the situation in rebuilding Gaza but also how can we find a more sustainable peace between Israelis and Palestinians.”

Netanyahu thanked Obama for the “unflinching support you gave Israel during our difficult days” during Operation Protective Edge.

The leaders also said they would discuss the threat posed to the region by the jihadist group ISIS.

New U.S. envoy to Czech Republic reconnects with family’s Jewish roots

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 10:57

PRAGUE (JTA) — Andrew Schapiro highlighted his family’s ties to the Czech Republic as he took over as the U.S. ambassador there.

Schapiro, 51, a Chicago lawyer, handed his credentials to the Czech president on Tuesday.

His late mother, Raya, was born in Prague in 1934 and fled to the United States in 1939 after the country then known as Czechoslovakia was occupied by Nazi Germany.

“It is very fulfilling to serve at the embassy which gave my mother a visa and saved her life,” said Schapiro, who is Jewish.

Raya Czerner Schapiro became a psychiatrist, author and educator, a choice influenced by her Holocaust experiences.

In her 2006 book, “Letters from Prague: 1939–1941,” she compiled correspondence from her grandmother and uncle who stayed in Prague and died under the Nazi occupation. Czerner Schapiro died in 2007.

Schapiro, a Harvard Law School classmate of President Obama, raised an estimated $1.26 million for Obama’s presidential campaigns.

He succeeds Norman Eisen, who served in Prague from 2011 to this year.

Eisen’s mother, a native of Sobrance in today’s Slovakia, survived the Holocaust and settled in Prague after the war. She fled to the United States after the 1948 communist takeover of Czechoslovakia.

Israeli official, P.A. prime minister meet on Gaza reconstruction

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 10:41

JERUSALEM (JTA) — A senior Israeli official met with Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah to discuss the rehabilitation of Gaza, among other issues.

Senior sources from Israel and the Palestinian Authority confirmed the Tuesday meeting in the West Bank city of Ramallah, Ynet reported Wednesday.

A senior P.A. official told Ynet that the two discussed ways that Israel can help the Palestinians following Israel’s military operation this summer in Gaza.

A source identified as a senior Israeli political official said the talks were “coordination intended to change the situation on the ground” and were “something happening in addition to truce talks in Cairo.”

According to Ynet, the issues being discussed are changes in Israel’s restrictions on Gaza, including permitting men over 60 to enter Jerusalem for religious services during Muslim holy days and allowing Gaza goods to be exported to the West Bank.

Israeli officials called the meeting part of Israel’s regular coordination efforts with the Palestinian Authority ahead of the Muslim holy days.

This year, the Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha, or the Feast of the Sacrifice, occurs on the same day as Yom Kippur — on Saturday — leading to concerns about violence.

Argentina’s parliament to launch fundraising drive for Palestinians   

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 08:12

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (JTA) — A fundraising campaign for Palestine by the Argentine National Congress is being seen by one Jewish group as an endorsement of Hamas.

The Argentina parliament on Thursday will launch “Palestine Resists, Argentina Arises,” led by the president of the Friends of Palestine Parliamentary Group, Leonardo Grosso; the president of the Chamber of Deputies, Julian Dominguez, who also is a member of the ruling Victory Front party; and the Palestinian ambassador to Argentina, Walid Muaqqat.

The announced objective is to launch several fundraising activities on behalf of “the zone affected by the military Operation Protective Edge.”

During the event, the documentary “Checkpoint Rock: Songs From Palestine” will be screened, followed by a debate led by Pedro Brieger, the Jewish journalist who justified on National Public Television the kidnapping and killing of three Israeli teens in June by Hamas operatives.

In a letter to Dominguez, Shimon Samuels, director of international relations for the Simon Wiesenthal Center, and Sergio Widder, the center’s director for Latin America, said that “we stand in solidarity with those who have been victims of Hamas’ violence, whether Israeli or Palestinian.”

“Our Center favors humanitarian-aid initiatives to promote peace. But this is a campaign to abuse the goodwill of Argentine parliamentarians in order to endorse Hamas’ anti-Semitic hate and violence,” Widder said. “There is nothing in the invitation program that indicates that there will also be a condemnation of Hamas’ anti-Semitic creed, expressed in its 1988 Charter, which calls for the murder of Jews internationally and for the destruction of Israel, a state with which Argentina maintains friendly relations.”

Samuels said, “Israel’s measures to minimize civilian casualties — including telephone calls, leaflets and text messages calling for residents to vacate rocket launch zones — and its decision to keep transporting vital humanitarian aid to Gaza, even under fire, are unprecedented.”

Hamas is designated as a terrorist organization by the European Union and the United States, as well as Australia, Canada, Egypt, Japan, Jordan, New Zealand and Saudi Arabia.

“It was Hamas’ aggression — thousands of rockets launched upon unarmed civilians — that triggered Israel’s right to self-defense as guaranteed under the United Nations Charter,” Samuels said.

Copies of the letter to Dominguez were sent to the presidents of all Chamber of Deputies blocs.


Netanyahu to Ban: U.N. conduct toward Israel is ‘disproportionate’

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 07:10

(JTA) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon that the international community applies a double standard to Israel.

Netanyahu and Ban met Tuesday afternoon at the United Nations offices in New York.

According to a statement from the Prime Minister’s Office, Netanyahu “declared that there was no justice in the fact that the standard applied to Israel was different than that applied to other countries.” The statement pointed to the fact that 200,000 civilians have been slaughtered in Syria during its more than three-year-long civil war.

Netanyahu called the U.N.’s conduct toward Israel “disproportionate” and said that Israel did not direct its attacks during the recent conflict in Gaza toward civilians.

“We regret any harm done to innocent civilians,” he said.

The prime minister told Ban, according to the statement, that Hamas had perpetrated a double war crime by using the residents of Gaza as human shields and deliberately firing at the residents of Israel.

Netanyahu also said that he “does not intend to apologize for the fact that Israel has Iron Dome to protect its citizens.”

The conflict with the Palestinians was not about the settlements, Netanyahu said, but about the Jewish state’s right to exist. He said there has been no change in his stance on a demilitarized Palestinian state that would recognize Israel as a Jewish state, and on security arrangements that would allow Israel to defend itself against any threat.

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman attended the Netanyahu-Ban meeting.

Survey: Nearly one-quarter of Jewish-Israelis boycotting Arab businesses

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 06:00

JERUSALEM (JTA) — One in four Jewish-Israeli consumers is boycotting Arab businesses in the wake of the summer’s Gaza conflict, according to an Israeli business daily.

The 24 percent is down from the 29 percent who said they were boycotting Arab-owned businesses during the 50-day Operation Protective Edge, Globes reported, citing a telephone survey by the Tel Aviv-based Geocartography Knowledge Group research institute. The number was down significantly from the 47 percent of Jewish-Israelis who said during the operation that they planned to boycott such businesses.

Some 51 percent of those surveyed also said that businesses that do not fire employees who criticize the Israel Defense Forces should be boycotted, and that some 11 percent of Jewish-Israelis are boycotting such businesses. Another 40 percent said they would boycott such businesses if they could identify them, the survey found.

Globes quoted unnamed sources among suppliers who said that sales to Arab-owned markets are down substantially in recent months.