The Times of Israel liveblogged Wednesday’s events as they unfolded.
One person is moderately wounded in a suspected stabbing attack at the Shivte Israel light rail station in Jerusalem, first responders say.
The suspected Palestinian terrorist has been shot by security forces at the scene. His condition is not immediately clear.
Images show the alleged assailant lying on the ground after being shot, with a knife next to him.
First responders say the wounded Israeli man fled to a nearby street after being stabbed in the back.
The United Nations agency for Palestinian refugees appeals for $15.5 million to respond to the fallout of clashes in Lebanon’s largest Palestinian refugee camp earlier this month.
The agency, known as UNRWA, says the money is needed to repair infrastructure damaged in the clashes in the Ein el-Hilweh camp, provide alternate schooling locations for children who will now be unable to use the schools in the camp, and hand cash assistance to people who have been displaced from their homes.
Several days of street battles broke out in the camp between Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah movement and Islamist groups in the camp after Fatah accused the Islamists of gunning down one of their military generals on July 30.
While an uneasy truce has prevailed since Aug. 3, clashes could resume if the Islamist groups do not hand over the accused killers of the Fatah general, Mohammad “Abu Ashraf” al-Armoushi, to the Lebanese judiciary as demanded by a committee of Palestinian factions earlier this month.
The bulk of the funds requested by UNRWA, about $11 million, would go to provide one-time $1,200 cash aid payments to families whose homes have “become uninhabitable due to the conflict,” the agency says in its appeal, as well as smaller aid payments to other vulnerable families in the camp.
An outcry erupts after footage emerges of an illegal camel race held in an IDF firing zone in the Negev desert.
The race featured dozens of camels, trucks and all-terrain vehicles crossing the Tzeilim base firing zone at high speed with many participants firing automatic weapons in the air.
Residents of southern Israel complain that the race is another example of the lawlessness in the Negev region.
Neither the IDF nor the police comment on the incident.
Pervasive lawlessness is a longstanding problem in the Negev, where police presence is limited and at times ineffective. Jewish Negev residents have particularly butted heads with local Bedouin.
מרוץ גמלים בשטחי האש.. pic.twitter.com/EDS0ruhhPq
— מה חדש.❓ (@Gloz111) August 30, 2023
Education Minister Yoav Kisch is looking to oust Yad Vashem head Dani Dayan, Channel 12 reports.
According to the report, Kisch has been looking to remove Dayan for several months and replace him with a political ally.
Kisch sent a letter to Yad Vashem this morning accusing Dayan of mismanagement and irregularities at the Holocaust museum. Kisch confirmed the report to Channel 12.
The report says that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Kisch want to replace Dayan with former Likud MK Keren Barak.
Dayan told Channel 12 that the accusations were “baseless.”
Dayan, a former head of the Yesha settler council and an ex-Israeli consul-general to New York previously ran for the Knesset with Gideon Sa’ar’s New Hope party, but failed to get in.
Kisch recently had to backtrack on an attempt to install a political appointee as head of the Israel National Library after a massive outcry that the move would destroy the independence of the national institution.
Defense Minister Yoav Gallant asked White House National Security Council Middle East coordinator Brett McGurk for clarifications regarding a possible Saudi nuclear program during their meeting in New York, the Walla news site reports.
Saudi Arabia has reportedly asked the US to green-light its development of a civilian nuclear program in exchange for the kingdom normalizing relations with Israel.
Israeli officials tell Walla that Israel is also seeking clarifications regarding advanced weapons the US could sell to Riyadh.
The officials say Israel wants the clarifications to develop a clear stand on the Saudi demands.
Among the questions posed to McGurk was how the US would ensure that the program would remain civilian and not develop into a military program, and how the US would ensure Israel’s continued qualitative military edge.
A pro-Islamist newspaper in Turkey accuses Chabad of Northern Cyprus of being a criminal enterprise with a pro-LGBTQ agenda and ties to Mossad.
The article in Millî Gazete quotes unnamed sources making general and wide-ranging allegations against Rabbi Chaim Hillel Azimov, who lives in Kyrenia. That city is in an area that Turkey occupied following its 1974 invasion of Cyprus, leading to the establishment of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, which is recognized as a state officially only by Turkey.
“Chabad commits many crimes. They launder money and leak information to MOSSAD. They decipher all military points. They buy land near military areas,” one source is quoted in the article titled ”Chabad is a criminal organization.”
It calls Chabad, a Haredi organization with a complicated relationship with Zionism, a “Zionist group” that “supports LGBT.”
A well-known rabbi in Turkey, speaking with The Times of Israel on condition of anonymity citing the political sensitivity of the issue, says the article is “a loose collection of defamations, in which antisemites used ‘Chabad’ as a stand-in for antisemitic conspiracy theories to make them more palatable.”
Rabbi Azimov is not immediately available for comment on the article.
Chabad, a semi-hierarchal outfit with thousands of rabbis in dozens of countries, is often featured in antisemitic conspiracy theories.
A rare blue supermoon will brighten the skies across the world this evening, with moonrise over Israel set for 7.05 p.m.
Those gazing upwards will have an additional treat, with Saturn peeking from behind.
This is the second full moon of the month, the reason it’s considered blue. It’s dubbed a supermoon because it’s closer to Earth than usual, appearing especially big and bright.
This will be the closest full moon of the year, just 222,043 miles (357,344 kilometers) or so away. That’s more than 100 miles (160 kilometers) closer than the Aug. 1 supermoon.
As a bonus, Saturn will be visible as a bright point 5 degrees to the upper right of the moon at sunset in the east-southeastern sky, according to NASA. The ringed planet will appear to circle clockwise around the moon as the night wears on.
If you missed the month’s first spectacle, better catch this one. There won’t be another blue supermoon until 2037, according to Italian astronomer Gianluca Masi, founder of the Virtual Telescope Project.
While most will enjoy the spectacle, there is also fear that in the US the supermoon could raise tides above normal just as Hurricane Idalia lashes Florida’s west coast, exacerbating flooding from the storm.
While a supermoon can make for a spectacular backdrop in photos of landmarks around the world, its intensified gravitational pull also makes tides higher.
“I would say the timing is pretty bad for this one,” said Brian Haines, the meteorologist in charge at the National Weather Service office in Charleston, South Carolina.
Two Israeli bus drivers are lightly hurt after Palestinians hurled stones at their vehicles on the Route 55 highway in the West Bank, medics say.
The Magen David Adom ambulance service says its medics treated the two men, aged 48 and 30, and took them to the Meir Hospital in Kfar Saba.
One suffered minor wounds to his arm and shoulder, and the other to his face, MDA says.
Both are listed in good condition.
The pair came under attack near the West Bank village of Nabi Ilyas, the Rescuers Without Borders emergency service says.
Pennsylvania is considering changing the state’s 2024 presidential primary to an earlier day, partly to avoid a vote on Passover.
State lawmakers plan to vote on legislation today that would change Pennsylvania’s primary from late April to late March.
Under current law, Pennsylvania’s primary date is the fourth Tuesday in April, which this year lands on April 23.
Many states want to hold presidential primaries earlier, to give residents more influence in the trajectory of presidential campaigns. But Pennsylvania lawmakers have resisted a change because it would push the beginning of the state’s customary 13-week primary season into the winter holidays.
A state Senate committee could advance a proposal to change the primary election to March 19 or March 26.
The Senate bill’s sponsor has long pushed to hold Pennsylvania’s primary earlier, before presidential candidates have all but locked down the delegates they need to win the nomination.
In an interview, Sen. David Argall, R-Schuylkill, acknowledges that moving it to either of those dates still leaves many states with large numbers of delegates before Pennsylvania, including Super Tuesday primary states on March 5.
By March 19, a candidate could lock up the delegates necessary to win the nomination, or at least put the contest out of reach.
This year, more lawmakers are motivated to support a change because April 23 is the first day of Passover, a Jewish holiday when observant Jews typically avoid the same activities they avoid on the Sabbath, such as driving, working or using electricity.
Gov. Josh Shapiro, who is Jewish, has said he supports changing the date, as well.
Argall’s bill would move the primary date to March 19, the same date as Ohio, Florida, Illinois, Kansas and Arizona. Still, that date comes after primaries in other major states, including California, Texas, Georgia, Michigan, North Carolina, Virginia, Massachusetts and Tennessee.
Police sources say that they have detained Samir Bakri, the alleged head of the Bakri crime family, after a four-month search.
Police special forces raided a compound in the town of Basmat Tab’un in the north. Bakri tried to flee along with another suspect but was arrested after a chase.
Bakri is suspected of murder and extortion.
The arrest comes as police try and crack down on a raging crime wave in the Arab community.
A running feud between the Bakri and Hariri crime families is thought to have claimed dozens of lives, including the mass killing of five people in a car wash in June.
A 20-year-old Israel Defense Force soldier has been arrested for serious sexual offenses against a 13-year-old boy, police say.
The soldier — who is male — apparently met the boy, and possibly hundreds of others, by impersonating a girl online, police say.
The soldier was arrested yesterday and his remand was extended by six days by the Rishon Lezion Magistrate’s Court.
Police call on anyone who may have been contacted by the soldier using the profiles shiralevi7035, shiralevi7039 and shiralevi70351 on Instagram to get in touch with investigators.
Fresh protests are to be held in Tel Aviv tonight against law enforcement’s handling of a probe into a deadly hit-and-run that killed a boy several months ago.
The protest will be held in Kaplan Street, the site of recent mass anti-government demonstrations.
The protesters, led by members of the Ethiopian community, have accused authorities of racism and leniency toward the driver who hit four-year-old Rafael Adana in May.
Adana’s mother called on demonstrators to remain calm after an officer was stabbed and 10 people were arrested at a protest in Tel Aviv last week.
“I call on all those who are coming to demonstrate tonight, to join my struggle for Rafael, for the truth, in a peaceful way,” she says.”Please respect this.”
A Saudi court has sentenced a man to death over his posts on X, formerly known as Twitter, and his activity on YouTube, the latest in a widening crackdown on dissent in the kingdom that has drawn international criticism.
The judgement against Mohammed bin Nasser al-Ghamdi, seen Wednesday by The Associated Press, comes against the backdrop of doctoral student Salma al-Shehab and others facing prison sentences of decades over their comments online.
The sentences appear part of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s wider effort to stamp out any defiance in the kingdom as he pursues massive building projects and other diplomatic deals to raise his profile globally.
“Al-Ghamdi’s death sentence over tweets is extremely horrific but stands in line with the Saudi authorities’ escalating crackdown,” says Lina Alhathloul, the head of monitoring and advocacy at the London-based advocacy group ALQST.
The trial has begun in Iran of the lawyer of Mahsa Amini, the young Iranian Kurd whose death last September triggered a widespread protest movement, a media report says.
Saleh Nikbakht is charged with “propaganda against the system,” the daily Etemad reports.
The first hearing “was on Tuesday and he was notified of the charge of propaganda activity against the regime for having spoken to foreign and local media, concerning the Mahsa Amini affair in particular,” it says.
Nikbakht’s trial begins nearly a year after the death in custody last September 16 of 22-year-old Amini, after she was arrested for allegedly violating the Islamic Republic’s strict dress rules for women.
If convicted, he faces a prison term of between one and three years.
Etemad reports that Nikbakht’s lawyer urged his acquittal, saying that in interviews he “only criticized the running of the country by the authorities.”
At the end of September 2022, Nikbakht indicated that the Amini family had filed a complaint against the police officers who had arrested her.
Defense Minister Yoav Gallant meets with a top representative of the Biden administration in New York City.
Gallant held a meeting with White House Coordinator for the Middle East and North Africa Brett McGurk during which he raised the importance of expanding the Abraham Accords to include additional partners in the region, his office says.
He also thanked him for his efforts so far in achieving this goal.
Discussions also focused on the Iran threat and preserving Israel’s military superiority in the region.
Earlier, Gallant met with US Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern Affairs Barbara Leaf and US Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield.
The meetings took place in New York as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is widely understood to be barring ministers from high-level meetings in Washington, DC, as the premier waits to be invited to meet with US President Joe Biden.
A military court accepts a plea deal with an Israeli soldier who had been convicted of reckless homicide for the killing of a comrade on an army base near Jerusalem earlier this year, and sentences him to three years in prison.
According to an indictment filed earlier this year, the Military Police soldier, Pvt. Binyamin Fentaye, entered a room on the Anatot Base on the night of January 2, picked up a gun that wasn’t his, and “carried out various actions” that resulted in a bullet discharging from the rifle, killing Cpl. Baruch Kabarta.
The soldier, who was detained shortly after the deadly incident, has also been convicted of obstruction of justice after he allegedly tried to dissuade another soldier who was in the room at the time from talking about the shooting.
Following a mediation process between prosecutors and the soldier’s defense team earlier this month, Fentaye confessed to the charge of reckless homicide, and the sides requested that he be sentenced to three years in prison.
The court has now accepted the plea deal, and sentences the soldier to three years.
President Isaac Herzog will next week pay a state visit to Slovakia and Austria, his office says.
Herzog will meet Slovakian President Zuzana Čaputová and Austrian President Alexander Van der Bellen.
During the two-day visit, which will begin Monday, Herzog will also meet with the countries’ heads of government, other senior officials, and leaders of the Jewish communities, the statement says.
Herzog will also participate in an unveiling ceremony at the home of the founder of modern Zionism, Theodor Herzl, alongside Vienna Mayor Michael Ludwig.
A senior officer in the military’s Computer Service Directorate has succumbed to wounds sustained in a car crash on Monday.
Maj. Efrat Shrem Zrihan, 34, from the northern city of Harish, served as the head of the cyber division in the Center of Computing and Information Systems unit, known by its Hebrew acronym of Mamram.
“Efrat was an outstanding officer, who is survived by her parents, two sisters, a husband, and a two-year-old child,” the Computer Service Directorate says in a statement.
Zrihan was critically wounded in a crash on the Route 6 highway, close to the Nitzanei Oz junction, on Monday morning while en route to her base.
Another man was lightly hurt in the four-car pileup on the highway, according to the Magen David Adom ambulance service.
In an unprecedented step, Supreme Court Justice Yosef Elron presents his candidacy to become Supreme Court president once current president Justice Esther Hayut steps down on October 16.
Elron’s request, submitted to Justice Minister Yariv Levin and Hayut, comes against the background of Levin’s intention to abandon the seniority system whereby the most senior judge on the Supreme Court is appointed as the next president.
Every president of the Supreme Court until now has been appointed through the seniority system, with only the most senior justice on the court submitting their name to the Judicial Selection Committee for the position.
Following Elron’s request, Hayut decides to remove Elron, a conservative justice, from the High Court panel set to hear petitions against Levin’s refusal to convene the Judicial Selection Committee.
If the seniority system is followed, the next president of the court will be Justice Isaac Amit, a liberal figure.
Levin seeks to appoint a conservative to the presidency, whose considerable powers have a major influence on key matters regarding the composition of Supreme Court panels and other issues.
Labor party MK Gilad Kariv met yesterday with high-ranking officials from the Palestinian Authority and Fatah in Ramallah to discuss cooperation between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, Channel 12 reports.
The talks centered around cooperation in the field of security, and how to revive dialogue between Israeli politicians and the PA and formulate an alternative vision to the current situation of “creeping annexation,” the report says.
Palestinian officials have expressed their concerns that the right-wing coalition in Israel may have a negative impact on the radicalization of Palestinian young people.
The meeting, which included officials close to PA President Mahmoud Abbas, also saw the participation of civil society groups, namely the Geneva Initiative and Palestinian Coalition for Peace.
This meeting and future ones are intended to push for a two-state solution as an alternative to the pro-settlement policies of the West Bank promoted by the Netanyahu government, which includes far-right ministers Bezalel Smotrich and Itamar Ben Gvir.
Kariv, head of the Knesset Caucus for the Advancement of the Two-State Solution and the Renewal of Diplomatic Negotiations, reportedly entered the West Bank city with authorization from the IDF and was escorted throughout his time in Ramallah by Palestinian security forces.
No official picture has been released after the meeting, due to the refusal by the Palestinian officials present to be identified.
An Iranian weightlifter has been given a lifetime ban by authorities in the Islamic Republic after shaking hands with an Israeli competitor at an event in Poland, state media reports.
Mostafa Rajaei, aged in his 40s, shook hands with Israeli weightlifter Maksim Svirsky on Saturday after they both stood on the podium at a World Masters championship in Wieliczka, Poland.
“The weightlifting federation bans athlete Mostafa Rajaei for life from entering all sports facilities in the country and dismisses the head of the delegation for the competition, Hamid Salehinia,” the body announces in a statement cited by state news agency IRNA.
Iran does not recognize Israel, its sworn enemy, and prohibits all contact between Iranian and Israeli athletes.
According to the IRNA report, Rajaei “crossed the red lines of the Islamic Republic” at the event where the Iranian delegation had been “sent with the support of the federation.”
Iranian weightlifter Mostafa Rajaei has been banned for life by the mullah terror entity ????????. Why? Because he shook hands with Israeli ???????? weightlifter Maksim Svirsky at sports competition in Poland. pic.twitter.com/mQmFRbunrg
— Avi Kaner ابراهيم אבי (@AviKaner) August 30, 2023
Rajaei is a former member of the Iranian national team and represented his country at the Asian Weightlifting Championships in 2015 in Thailand.
In 2021, Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei urged athletes “not to shake hands with a representative of the (Israeli) criminal regime to obtain a medal.”
For years, Iranian athletes have managed to avoid meeting Israelis in competitions, often by getting disqualified or providing medical certificates testifying that they were unwell.
Young chess prodigy Alireza Firouzja left Iran after the sport’s federation banned him from playing in the 2019 world championship for fear he would face an Israeli player. He is now a naturalized French citizen.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meets with visiting Republican Senator Steve Daines of Montana.
Netanyahu expresses Israel’s solidarity with Montana, which has been hit by wildfires, and discusses challenges Israel faces in combating such dangers, Netanyahu’s office says in a statement.
The two also discussed the threats posed by Iran and its proxies and the special alliance between Israel and the US.
Tunisian President Kais Saied says that the word “normalization” does not exist for him when it comes to Israel.
The comment was made at a meeting for foreign ambassadors in the capital Tunis yesterday, according to the Tunisian news website Nessma.
Saied calls on the newly appointed ambassadors from four countries — Serbia, Iran, Iraq and Turkey — to never forget the Palestinian cause, the “central issue for all nations.”
Saied stresses the importance of advocating for Jerusalem to be the capital of an independent Palestinian state, for a right of return for Palestinian refugees, and for the Palestinian people to regain their rights over “all of Palestine.”
The comments come two days after Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen announced a meeting with his Libyan counterpart Najla Mangoush in Rome last week, causing an uproar in the North African country and leading to the dismissal of Mangoush from her post.
Following the revelation, Libyan Prime Minister Dbeibeh visited the Palestinian embassy in the Libyan capital, Tripoli, on Monday to affirm his country’s continued support of the Palestinian cause.
Hurricane Idalia makes landfall on Florida’s west coast as a dangerous Category 3 storm on Wednesday and threatens to unleash life-threatening storm surges and rainfall.
Idalia comes ashore in the lightly populated Big Bend region, where the Florida Panhandle curves into the peninsula. The result could be a big blow to a state still dealing with lingering damage from last year’s Hurricane Ian.
The National Weather Service in Tallahassee calls Idalia “an unprecedented event” since no major hurricanes on record have ever passed through the bay abutting the Big Bend.
Hurricanes are measured on a five-category scale, with a Category 5 being the strongest. A Category 3 storm is the first on the scale considered a major hurricane.
Brazilian legend Ronaldinho will join a host of former Barcelona stars when they play two exhibition soccer games in Israel next week, the Kan public broadcaster reports.
Barcelona announced earlier this month that the team of former stars would take on Maccabi Tel Aviv and Maccabi Haifa legends in the matches.
The Barcelona statement said that the team, coached by Albert Ferrer, would feature former France and Arsenal star Thierry Henry for the first time.
Also in the squad are recently retired Bojan Krkic, along with Jesús Angoy, Xavi Guzmán, Frederic Dehu, Sergi Barjuan, Jon Andoni Goikoetxea, Juliano Belletti, Roberto Trashorras, Jofre Mateu, Ludovic Giuly and Rivaldo.
While Ronaldinho, who has visited Israel several times, was not named in the statement, Kan says he will link up with the Barca Legends for the games at the Bloomfield and Sammy Ofer stadiums.
“I am really happy to return to Israel, I love the country and the people,” Kan quotes him as saying.
Shots were fired overnight at an East Jerusalem school that recently announced it was switching to the Israeli educational curriculum, the Kan public broadcaster reports.
The incident occurs in the neighborhood of Kafr Aqab.
“We will not allow the school year to open” is painted on the walls of the school, along with messages purporting to be from the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, a terror outfit loosely allied with the Fatah party
The gunfire shatters several windows, but there are no reports of injuries.
"לא ניתן ששנת הלימודים תיפתח": ירי לעבר בית ספר במזרח ירושלים שעתיד להיפתח על ידי העירייה והחליט להחליף את תוכנית החינוך הפלסטינית בישראלית, שב"כ וצה"ל מעורבים בחקירה | פרסום ראשון של @HGoldich >>> https://t.co/Br6jrooHLO pic.twitter.com/oswc5FiuJC
— כאן חדשות (@kann_news) August 30, 2023
The Kremlin says that “deliberate wrongdoing” is among the possible causes of the plane crash that killed mercenary leader Yevgeny Prigozhin last week.
Speaking to reporters during his daily conference call, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov notes that “different versions” of what happened exist and “are being considered,” including “let’s put it this way, deliberate wrongdoing.”
He urges reporters to wait until the probe by the Russian Investigative Committee is concluded and says there can’t be an international investigation into it. The committee said last week it has opened a criminal case on charges of flight safety violations, a standard charge used in plane crash investigations in Russia when there is no immediate reason to suspect foul play.
A business jet carrying Prigozhin, founder and leader of the private military force Wagner, and his top lieutenants crashed halfway between Moscow and St. Petersburg last Wednesday, killing all 10 people on board.
The crash occurred exactly two months after Prigozhin mounted a short-lived armed rebellion against Russia’s military leadership, posing the biggest challenge to President Vladimir Putin’s authority in his 23-year rule. The Kremlin has denied involvement in the crash.
A Palestinian gunman is killed in a rare clash with Palestinian Authority security forces in the West Bank, the Reuters news agency reports.
The clashes came in the Tulkarm refugee camp when security forces tried to remove barricades set up by terror groups to impede Israel Defense Force troops who carry out regular raids across the West Bank.
A political party representing the anti-judicial overhaul protest movement will run in the upcoming Tel Aviv municipal elections on a joint ticket with the left-wing Meretz party and the “Green Center” party.
The party will be known as the “New Contract.”
A joint statement says the slates decided to join forces to represent liberal values.
“The need to present a united front for liberal and democratic forces to take control of centers of power and influence over our lives is clearer today than ever before,” the statement says.
“These three groups share a joint ideology and ideas of furthering liberal democracy, equal rights, social and environmental justice, a fair economy, and an Israeli Shabbat,” the statement says.
Meital Lahavi from Meretz will head the list.
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