Israeli city frets about chemical depot after Hezbollah threat

By Dan Williams JERUSALEM, Feb 23 : The mayor of Haifa implored Israel’s prime minister today to remove an industrial chemical depot from the northern city, saying a veiled threat by Lebanon’s Hezbollah militia to shell the site put as many as a million people in danger. Israeli worries about the toxic risks posed by […]

Netanyahu defends top general in excessive force debate

By Jeffrey Heller JERUSALEM, Feb 21 : Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu defended Israel’s military chief today after the general drew fire for saying he would not want soldiers confronting a wave of Palestinian stabbings to “empty a magazine” into a girl wielding scissors. One member of Netanyahu’s right-wing cabinet said Lieutenant-General Gabi Eisenkot’s remarks last […]

86-day Palestinian hunger strike challenges Israeli detention policy

By Maayan Lubell JERUSALEM, Feb 19 : A three-month hunger strike by a Palestinian journalist accused of militancy on behalf of Hamas has prompted stern questions from the United Nations and European Union over Israel’s policy of keeping prisoners in detention without charge. Mohammad al-Qiq, who was detained by Israeli forces in November, is on […]

“Former Israeli PM Olmert insists on innocence as jail term begins”

By Maayan Lubell JERUSALEM, Feb 15 : Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert released a video statement insisting on his innocence today, before arriving at prison in a motorcade to begin a 19-month sentence for corruption. Olmert is the first former head of government in Israel to go to prison. During his premiership from 2006 […]

Obama, Netanyahu may agree defence deal in Washington next month, envoy says

By Dan Williams JERUSALEM, Feb 11 : US President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu might meet in Washington next month and complete a deal on future defence aid to Israel that has been dogged by disagreement, the US ambassador to Israel said today. Current US defence aid to Israel, worth about 3 […]

UN rights expert accuses Israel of excessive force against Palestinians

By Stephanie Nebehay GENEVA, Feb 11 : The UN human rights investigator for Gaza and the West Bank called on Israel today to investigate what he called excessive force used by Israeli security forces against Palestinians and to prosecute perpetrators. Makarim Wibisono, United Nations special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories, also challenged […]