Israel expresses solidarity as three killed in London attack
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Israel expresses solidarity as three killed in London attack

Attacker was shot dead, police say they believe there is only one attacker but still carrying out searches in area

  • Armed police officers guard at a police cordon outside the Houses of Parliament in central London on March 22, 2017 during an emergency incident. (AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVAS)
    Armed police officers guard at a police cordon outside the Houses of Parliament in central London on March 22, 2017 during an emergency incident. (AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVAS)
  • Sara Netanyahu takes pictures using her mobile phone of her husband, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a visit at the Great Wall of China in Beijing on March 22, 2017. (Haim Zach/GPO/Flash90)
    Sara Netanyahu takes pictures using her mobile phone of her husband, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a visit at the Great Wall of China in Beijing on March 22, 2017. (Haim Zach/GPO/Flash90)
  • Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan delivers a speech during a Turkish Anatolian Publishers Association Members meeting at the Presidential Complex in Ankara on March 22, 2017. (Adem Altan/AFP)
    Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan delivers a speech during a Turkish Anatolian Publishers Association Members meeting at the Presidential Complex in Ankara on March 22, 2017. (Adem Altan/AFP)
  • Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sara at the Monument to the People's Heroes in Beijing on March 21, 2017. (Haim Zach / GPO)
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sara at the Monument to the People's Heroes in Beijing on March 21, 2017. (Haim Zach / GPO)
  • President Reuven Rivlin (c) oversees the signing of an Education agreement in Vietnam (Koby Gideon /GPO)
    President Reuven Rivlin (c) oversees the signing of an Education agreement in Vietnam (Koby Gideon /GPO)
  • A Syrian woman travelling to the United States through Amman opens her laptop before checking in at Beirut international airport on March 22,2017 (AFP PHOTO / ANWAR AMRO)
    A Syrian woman travelling to the United States through Amman opens her laptop before checking in at Beirut international airport on March 22,2017 (AFP PHOTO / ANWAR AMRO)

The Times of Israel liveblogged Wednesday’s events as they unfolded.

Erdogan says no Europeans will be safe

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says that Europeans across the world will not be able to walk safely on the streets if they kept up their current attitude, Reuters reports

“If Europe continues this way, no European in any part of the world can walk safely on the streets. We, as Turkey, call on Europe to respect human rights and democracy,” Erdogan said at event for local journalists in Ankara, according to Reuters.

Turkey is in the midst of a bitter confrontation with Germany and the Netherlands, who are refusing to allow Turkish politicians to campaign on their soil for an upcoming referendum to expand the power of the president.

President Rivlin oversees signing of cooperation agreements with Vietnaam

President Reuven Rivlin is overseeing the signing of several cooperation agreements with Vietnam in the fields of medicine, energy, and education.

Rivlin is in Vietnam on a state visit.

The agreements will see Israeli companies Staromedic and Medicdan join with Vietnam’s TH Group to establish a private hospital, the president’s office says.

Israeli energy company Ormat will build a power station and the Israel Association of Community Centers (IACC) signed a cooperation agreement with Talent Pool, the largest informal education, and training organization in Vietnam.

President Reuven Rivlin (c) oversees the signing of an Education agreement in Vietnam (Koby Gideon /GPO)

President Reuven Rivlin (c) oversees the signing of an education agreement in Vietnam (Koby Gideon /GPO)

New law to deny ‘get’ refusers religious privileges in jail

Orthodox men jailed for refusing to grant their wives a religious bill of divorce may now find themselves stripped of religious privileges in prison, according to a new law advanced by the Knesset today.

According to the law, proposed by Jewish Home MK Shuli Moalem-Refaeli, rabbinical courts may now sanction prisoners, forcing them to wear prison uniforms instead of their own clothes and barring them from the special Torah study program in Israeli jails.

The rabbinical courts may also deny them special kosher food with a “mehadrin” certification.

For inmates in solitary confinement, the rabbinical courts are granted the authority to deny them any writing or reading materials, apart from a prayer book, and see to it they may not access any forms of communication.

The sanctions are designed to pressure the men to grant their wives a divorce, or get, without which their wives may not remarry according to Jewish law.

Marissa Newman

Netanyahu impressed with Great Wall of China

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says he was impressed by his surprise visit to the Great Wall of China.

“It’s impressive,” he says when asked for his reaction just before leaving China.

“You see the power of this nation, the determination and perseverance in achieving goals that cross hundreds, even thousands of years,” Netanyahu says.

“It reminds me of another nation, it reminds me of our people.”

Raphael Ahren

Netanyahu says major progress in reaching settlement deal with US

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says that significant progress has been made in reaching an understanding between Israel and the US on Israeli settlement construction.

“There has been significant progress in reaching an understanding on construction in the settlements,” Netanyahu said speaking to reporters on his plane before returning to Israel from China.

“The talks have not been completed, but there is progress and we will hear about it when we reach Israel,” he says.

Netanyahu’s chief of staff Yoav Horowitz left for Washington on Sunday to discuss settlement building with the Trump administration.

He joined Ron Dermer, Israel’s Washington ambassador, to continue discussions with US special envoy Jason Greenblatt in an attempt to reach an understanding between Israel and US President Donald Trump’s administration about building in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Greenblatt visited Israel, the Palestinian Authority and Jordan last week to gain a deeper understanding of the situation. Despite two meetings with Netanyahu during the course of the visit, no agreement was reached on settlement construction.

Raphael Ahren

Ukraine bans Russian singer from Eurovision over Crimea visit

Ukraine has banned a Russian singer from entering the country to compete at the Eurovision Song Contest over a past performance in Russia-annexed Crimea, the Ukrainian security service (SBU) says.

“The Security Service of Ukraine has banned Yuliya Samoilova from entry for three years,” SBU spokeswoman Olena Gitlyanska says.

“The decision was taken just now.”

— AFP

Syrian Kurds say US Marines deployed in Syria

A US-backed Syrian Kurdish coalition says the US has landed infantry behind Islamic State lines to spearhead an assault on the town of Tabqa.

The Syrian Democratic Forces say the US has airlifted several Marines and SDF fighters by helicopter into Islamic State-held territory, capturing four villages, and cutting the main artery running between the extremists’ de facto capital, Raqqa, and the western countryside.

It was not immediately possible to confirm the deployment with US commanders.

The group said in a statement on social media Wednesday that the operation was in preparation for an assault on Tabqa, an IS redoubt 45 kilometers (28 miles) west of Raqqa.

The activist-run group Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently said 500 US and Syrian Kurdish forces were deployed in the operation Wednesday morning. The group relies on local contacts to smuggle information out of IS territory.

AP

Four ultra-Orthodox men charged over recent anti-draft protests

Charges are filed against four ultra-Orthodox men who took part in recent violent protests over a draft dodger.

The four are charged with assaulting police officers and creating a public disturbance. Prosecutors are asking for them to be held until the end of proceedings against them.

A small section of the ultra-Orthodox community has been protesting this week against the police detention of a Haredi man arrested for failing to appear at a draft office.

Many in the ultra-Orthodox community shun the mandatory military service that applies to most Israelis, and the community has historically enjoyed blanket exemptions in favor of religious seminary studies. But some in the religious community refuse to even appear at the recruiting office to request such exemptions in protest against the state.

Ultra-Orthodox demonstrators protest at the Bar Ilan intersection in Jerusalem on November 6, 2016, following the arrest of an ultra-orthodox draft-dodger. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Ultra-Orthodox demonstrators protest at the Bar Ilan intersection in Jerusalem on November 6, 2016, following the arrest of an ultra-Orthodox draft-dodger. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Russia slams Kiev’s ‘outrageous’ ban on Eurovision singer

Russia slams Ukraine for imposing a travel ban on its contestant for the Eurovision Song Contest in Kiev over a past performance in Russia-annexed Crimea.

“This is yet another outrageous, cynical and inhumane act by the Kiev authorities,” Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin tells the Interfax news agency.

Earlier, Yuliya Samoilova was barred for three years.

AFP

Health Ministry closes Rishon Lezion beach

The Health Ministry is warning the public against bathing at the Rishon Lezion beach south of Tel Aviv.

The ministry says there is pollution in the sea and the beach is closed until further notice.

No reason was given for the pollution.

Airlines must implement UK laptop ban by Saturday

Airlines impacted by Britain’s cabin ban on electronic devices on flights from some Middle East and North African countries have until 0001 GMT Saturday to implement the measure, officials say.

But passengers “should go to the airport with the expectation that the measures are already in effect,” a transport ministry spokeswoman says.

Britain followed the US in imposing the ban on all electronics larger than a cellphone. Israel is not affected.

AFP

Watchdog sees sharp 2016 increase in settlement construction

There were 2,630 housing construction starts in West Bank settlements in 2016, the Central Bureau of Statistics says in a report released today.

The settlement watchdog group Peace Now says this is a 40 percent increase on last year, up from 1,901 in 2015

The release of the figures come as Israel is trying to reach an agreement with the US on settlement construction. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said earlier in the day that “significant progress ” has been made.

According to Peace Now, this is the second-highest number of new home starts in the last 15 years and the group says it shows Israel is not interested in reaching a peace deal with the Palestinians.

“The sharp increase in settlement construction sends a clear message to the Palestinians and to the international community that Israel is not interested in a two state solution,” Peace Now says.

The figures do not include building in Jewish neighborhoods in East Jerusalem.

Netanyahu says Israeli building in East Jerusalem, which Israel has annexed, is nonnegotiable.

Palestinian laborers work at the construction site of a new housing project in the Israeli settlement of Ariel near the West Bank city of Nablus on January 25, 2017. (AFP Photo/Jack Guez)

Palestinian laborers work at the construction site of a new housing project in the Israeli settlement of Ariel near the West Bank city of Nablus on January 25, 2017. (AFP Photo/Jack Guez)

Reports of shots fired outside UK Parliament, several wounded

Shots have been fired outside the UK parliament and several people are wounded, according to media reports.

At least a dozen people are injured on Westminster Bridge near the parliament, a Reuters photographer says.

The Palace of Westminster is reportedly in lockdown, the BBC says.

12 hurt in apparent car-ramming, shooting outside UK Parliament

Reuters is reporting that 12 people been injured in the apparent attack outside parliament, including two people on Westminster Bridge, bleeding heavily.

The BBC says they were apparently hit by a car ramming.

The BBC says that there was also a stabbing incident.

A police officer has been stabbed in the Houses of Parliament in central London, Commons Leader David Lidington has said, according to the BBC.

He tells MPs the “alleged assailant was shot by armed police” following a “serious” incident, the BBC says.

“Shots fired outside Parliament. Loud explosion then shooting. Man lying shot outside gates to Parliament. Gun shots outside, Frightening,” tweeted Christopher Hope, the chief political correspondent of The Daily Telegraph

Downing Street says PM May safe in Parliament incident

British Prime Minister Theresa May is safe in the Parliament incident, Downing Street says.

May was seen being ushered into a silver Jaguar car as what sounded like gunfire rang out at Parliament during the incident, the BBC reports.

London police say they are treating Parliament incident as terror attack

London police say they are treating the incidents outside the British parliament as a terror attack.

A police spokesman says they are “treating this as terror incident until we know otherwise.”

Former Polish minister posts eyewitness video of London attack

The former Polish foreign minister Radoslaw Sikorski posted a video on Twitter that seems to show people lying injured in the road on Westminster Bridge.

Sikorski, a senior fellow at the Harvard Centre for European Studies, says he saw at least five people lying on the ground after being “mown down” by a car.

Sikorski told the BBC he “heard what I thought was just a collision and then I looked through the window of the taxi and someone down, obviously in great distress.

“Then I saw a second person down, and I started filming, then I saw three more people down, one of them bleeding profusely.”

AP

Trump says briefed on attack in London

US President Donald Trump says he has been briefed on an incident in London outside the Houses of Parliament.

“Just getting an update on London,” Trump says, entering a meeting in the White House’s Roosevelt Room. “Big news.”

AFP

 

Witness describes how police officer was stabbed

Witness Rick Longley tells the Press Association that he saw a man stab a policeman outside Britain’s Parliament.

“We were just walking up to the station and there was a loud bang and a guy, someone, crashed a car and took some pedestrians out,” he says.

“They were just laying there and then the whole crowd just surged around the corner by the gates just opposite Big Ben.

London's air ambulance arrives at the Houses of Parliament in central London on March 22, 2017 during an emergency incident (AFP PHOTO / DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS)

London’s air ambulance arrives at the Houses of Parliament in central London on March 22, 2017 during an emergency incident (AFP/Daniel Leal-Olivas)

“A guy came past my right shoulder with a big knife and just started plunging it into the policeman.

“I have never seen anything like that. I just can’t believe what I just saw.”

Lawmaker Adam Holloway tells the AP he saw people running and immediately ran into his office in Parliament to be with his staff. “A lot of us are locked in with our staff at the moment,” he says.

AP

 

Police reveal son of Welfare Minister Haim Katz arrested

Police have revealed that the son of a government minister arrested this morning is Yair Katz. His father is Welfare Minister Haim Katz from Likud.

Earlier today police arrested Katz and one other person as part of an ongoing probe into corruption suspicions at Israel Aerospace Industries, one of the country’s largest defense firms.

Haim Katz was also questioned under caution recently weeks ago by agents of the Israel Securities Authority

Suspicions of corruption, fraud and breach of trust surrounding IAI became public last week when police raided the defense contractor, arresting 14 people.

The labor union at IAI, which employs some 16,000 people and is Israel’s largest state-owned company, is known as a Likud stronghold.

At least one killed in London attack — BBC

The BBC reports that at least one person has been killed in the London attack.

The BBC says the woman died of her wounds sustained in the car-ramming and stabbing attack outside Parliament.

Some wounded in the London attack have ‘catastrophic’ injuries

Several of the wounded in the London terror attack have “catastrophic” injuries, a junior doctor at St. Thomas’ Hospital tells the BBC.

The doctor also confirms that one woman died of her wounds in the car-ramming and stabbing attack.

British Chief Rabbi Mirvis offer prayers for London vicitms

UK Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis is offering prayers for the victims of the London attack.

“Prayers of the Jewish community are with the families of the victims of today’s attack at #Westminster & with our brave security services,” he tweets.

Scottish independence debate suspended over London attack

Scotland’s parliament suspended a crucial debate today on whether or not to hold a new independence referendum as Britain prepares to leave the EU, following a suspected terror attack in London.

“The fact that our sister parliament had a serious incident is effecting this particular debate,” the Edinburgh parliament’s presiding officer Ken Macintosh says in a statement to parliament.

AFP

London mayor says urgent investigation underway

London Mayor Sadiq Khan says an urgent investigation is underway into the attack outside Parliament.

“The Metropolitan Police Service is dealing with the incident and an urgent investigation is underway,” Khan says in a statement. “My thoughts are with those affected and their families.”

“I would like to express my thanks to the police and emergency services who work so hard to keep us safe and show tremendous bravery in exceptionally difficult circumstances,” he says.

Two killed in London attack — Sky News

Sky News reports that two people have been killed in the attack in London.

Met commander BJ Harrington tells reporters that several people, including police officers, are injured but does not confirm fatalities.

Woman pulled alive from River Thames

A woman who was apparently hit in the car-ramming on Westminster Bridge and thrown into the River Thames below, has been pulled out alive, Sky News reports.

The report says she was in the cold water for more than an hour after the London attack.

British MP tried to save stabbed police officer

British MP Tobias Ellwood is being hailed as a hero after he gave CPR to the police officer stabbed in the London attack.

The condition of the officer is not immediately clear.

May to hold emergency meeting after London attack

Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May will chair a meeting of the government emergency committee to discuss the response to the terror incident in London.

The emergency committee, known as Cobra, coordinates the high-level response to serious incidents. It brings together government ministers with senior officials of the emergency services and security and intelligence agencies.

Such meetings are held after such serious incidents as the July 7, 2005 attack on London transport services.

The Wednesday meeting is held in the briefing room of the Cabinet Office on Whitehall.

AP

French students hurt in London attack, PM says

French students are among those hurt in Wednesday’s attack on Westminster Bridge in London, French Prime Minister Bernard Cazeneuve says.

“Solidarity with our British friends, horribly attacked, full support for the injured French students, their families and their friends,” he says in a tweet.

Foreign ministry spokesman Romain Nadal says three students were injured, and that they were on a school trip.

AFP

Israel expresses solidarity with victims of London attack

Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely has sent Israel’s condolences to the victims of the London attack.

“Israel expresses its deep shock at the terror attack in London today and its solidarity with the victims and with the people and government of Great Britain,” Hotovely said.

“Terror is terror wherever it occurs and we will fight it relentlessly,” she said.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is also Israel’s foreign minister, is currently flying back to Israel from a visit to China.

Report says policeman among the dead in London attack

One of the people killed in the London attack is a police officer, British Media reports.

Both the Guardian and Sky News say that the policeman who was stabbed has died.

Another two officers were wounded.

Three people, attacker killed in London

Three people and the attacker were killed in the London terror attack, says Mark Rowley Head of counter terror policing.

Rowley says that another 20 people were injured.

One of the dead was an officer, he says.

UK believe only one attacker in London terror

A senior officer says police believe that there was only one attacker in London, who was killed.

Nevertheless, police are carrying out searches in the area, which is still under lockdown as a precaution, says Deputy Superintendent Mark Rowley, the head of counter-terror policing.

Rowley says of the three people killed, two were apparently killed in the car-ramming on the bridge and a police officer who was stabbed.

 

 

Trump, May speak by phone after London attack: White House

US President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Theresa May spoke today after an attack in London, the White House says.

“We obviously condemn today’s attack in Westminster,” says press secretary Sean Spicer.

“We applaud the quick response that the British police and their first responders made to the situation for the victims in this. They are in our thoughts and our prayers.”

AFP

US demanding quotas for settlement building — report

In talks between US President Donald Trump’s special envoy Jason Greenblatt and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last week, the US demanded Israel end construction in isolated settlements and impose an overall yearly quota, Channel 2 reports.

Earlier Netanyahu said that progress had been made in ongoing talks with the US.

Netanyahu’s chief of staff, Yoav Horowitz, left for Washington on Sunday to discuss settlement building with the Trump administration.

Horowitz joined Ron Dermer, Israel’s ambassador to the US, to continue discussions with Greenblatt in an attempt to reach an understanding with the administration on construction in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Two Isralis wounded when rocks thrown at their vehicle

Two Israelis, including an 86-year-old woman, were lightly wounded as Palestinians threw rocks at their vehicle near the West Bank settlement of Beitar Illit, just south of Jerusalem.

Medics assisted the two and took them to a Jerusalem hospital for further treatment, the Magen David Adom rescue service says.

House intel chair briefs Trump on ‘inappropriate’ intelligence collection

The chairman of the House intelligence committee has briefed US President Donald Trump on the possible monitoring of Trump on “incidental” intelligence collection, saying some seems “inappropriate”

Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., said Wednesday that the communications of Trump transition officials — possibly including Trump himself — may have been “monitored” after the election as part of an “incidental collection.”

Nunes said the intercepted communications do not appear to be related to the ongoing FBI investigation into Trump associates’ contacts with Russia. He said he believes the intelligence collections were done legally.

AP

 

UN envoy Danon sends Israel’s support for UK to counterpart

Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon expresses his country’s support to his counterpart, UK Ambassador Matthew Rycroft, following today’s terror attack in London.

“Israel stands as one with the British people as we all work together to defeat the scourge of terrorism. We send our condolences and wish a speedy recovery to all those injured,” he says.

 

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