Wednesday, 23 July 2014
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Dozens of Palestinians wounded overnight in West Bank clashes

Clashes took place overnight in the southern West Bank between Palestinians protesting the Israeli attacks on Gaza and Israeli soldiers. Dozens of Palestinians were wounded. A general strike throughout the West Bank, called for by the political parties, will be held Tuesday. 

Shooting fish in a barrel

Hamas leadership claimed a five hour humanitarian ceasefire proposed by the United Nations would com...

DOCUMENT: ANC calls Israeli ambassador to leave the country

Following nationwide protests across South Africa against the ongoing Israeli attacks on Gaza (Israe...

African Literature Association supports academic BDS

In the 2014 African Literature Association (ALA) meeting in Johannesburg, the ALA approved a resolut...

Israelis to EU: pressure Israel to accept Hamas' truce terms

On Sunday July 20th, a group of more than 200 Israeli citizens sent a letter to the European Council...
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Please join us at the AICafe on Tuesday 22 July from 7.30 p.m. for a movie screening about Gaza - To Shoot an Elephant.
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Join the Nobel laureates, artists and public intellectuals in calling for an immediate military embargo on Israel. Sign the petition here.

Jerusalem

Israeli to release three of the suspects on the killing of Muhammad Abu Khdeir...

Barring any unusual developments, three of the six suspects arrested for the murder of Mohammed Abu Khdeir will be released on a seven-day house arres...

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Israeli to release three of the suspects on the killing of Muhammad Abu Khdeir

Hebron

Hebron: a hostage city...

Since June 12, when three Israeli teenage settlers went missing north of Hebron, Israeli authorities have placed and kept the Hebron district under cl...

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Hebron: a hostage city

Opinions

Shooting fish in a barrel ...

Hamas leadership claimed a five hour humanitarian ceasefire proposed by the United Nations would come into effect in Gaza on Tuesday morning, hours be...

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Shooting fish in a barrel

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Israeli Society

Economy of the Occupation

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Ultra Orthodox Jews riot in Beit Shemesh

Created on 16 January 2012
Religious “Haredi” Jews clashed on Sunday with Israeli Policemen in Beit Shemesh, a city in central Israel that has become a flashpoint for tensions between secular and moderately religious Jewish Israelis versus conservative, ultra Orthodox Jewish Israelis.

jewish-family-burqa-beit-shemeshjewish-family-burqa-beit-shemesh

Beit Shemesh is home to different streams of Orthodox Judaism, including this sect that forces women to wear burqa-like veils. While these veils are scandalous to some members of the Orthodox community, members of the Orthodox community have also persecuted young girls they feel are dressed immodestly. Yesterday's riots in Beit Shemesh remind of that internal tensions in Israel are on the rise (photo: Tel Chai Nation blog)

Sunday’s protests began after several prominent members of the Haredi community, an ultra Orthodox group, were arrested by Israeli police for tax fraud and money laundering. Protesters say that the arrestees were deliberately targeted as a provocation against the Orthodox community in Beit Shemesh.

Among the detained was Amram Shapira, the personal assistant of Haredi leader Rabbi Tuvia Weiss. Shapira and other Haredi leaders who were arrested on Sunday were accused of misusing millions of shekels worth of donations to the community.

Protesters tried to set up barricades on several main roads in Beit Shemesh, and threw rocks at police officers when they attempted to intervene. Clashes were also reported in Jerusalem, with Orthodox Jewish youth throwing rocks at police. Four protesters were arrested in Beit Shemesh.

The tension between Israel’s Orthodox community and both the secular and moderately religious Jewish communities has escalated in recent weeks, following reports that ultra Orthodox Jews harass girls, some as young as 8 years old, by using physical intimidation, threats and violence when they deemed the girls clothes immodest. This was despite the fact that the children wear religious school uniforms, which include a blouse with long sleeves and a long skirt. 

Hundreds of residents of Beit Shemesh protested last week against what they see as an invasion of their community by ultra-Orthodox elements, who the residents say are attempting to change the character of their city.