Netanyahu: Some in Europe won’t wake up until Iranian nukes land on them
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Netanyahu: Some in Europe won’t wake up until Iranian nukes land on them

PM slams European foreign ministers’ assertion that Iranian breaches of 2015 nuclear deal aren’t ‘significant’ as ‘1930s appeasement’

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu chairs the weekly cabinet meeting at his office in Jerusalem on July 7, 2019. (Abir Sultan/Pool/AFP)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu chairs the weekly cabinet meeting at his office in Jerusalem on July 7, 2019. (Abir Sultan/Pool/AFP)

The Times of Israel liveblogged Monday’s events as they happened.

Trump demands ‘radical left congresswomen’ apologize to Israelis

Continuing his tirades against progressive women in the US Congress, US President Donald Trump wonders in a Twitter post when “Radical Left Congresswomen” will apologize to, among others, the “people of Israel,” for their “foul language.”

He writes: “When will the Radical Left Congresswomen apologize to our Country, the people of Israel and even to the Office of the President, for the foul language they have used, and the terrible things they have said. So many people are angry at them & their horrible & disgusting actions!”

The tweet continues a barrage of statements on Twitter that started yesterday, when Trump urged unnamed “‘Progressive’ Democrat Congresswomen” to “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.”

He was apparently referring to the coterie of new members of Congress, many of them young, female and minority, who were part of a progressive rally among Democrats in the 2018 midterm elections. They include, among others, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, who was born in New York and is of Puerto Rican ancestry; Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, who fled war-torn Somalia as a child, came to the United States as a refugee and is the first black Muslim woman in Congress; Rep. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, who was born in Detroit and is of Palestinian descent; and Rep. Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, who was born in Cincinnati and is the first African American elected to Congress from Massachusetts.

UK’s May slams Trump’s congresswomen tweets as ‘completely unacceptable’

LONDON — Outgoing British Prime Minister Theresa May condemns US President Donald Trump’s tweets telling progressive Democratic congresswomen to “go back” where they came from as “completely unacceptable.”

“Her view is that the language which was used to refer to the women was completely unacceptable,” May’s spokesman tells reporters.

Trump and May have endured a rocky relationship, which took a turn for the worse last week following the leak of British diplomatic cables highly critical of his presidency. Angered by May’s support for her ambassador, Trump assailed the prime minister over her handling of fraught Brexit negotiations, and welcomed her impending departure from office.

Trump accused congresswomen who “originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe” of “viciously telling the people of the United States, the greatest and most powerful Nation on earth, how our government is to be run.”

“Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came. Then come back and show us how it is done,” Trump wrote.

— AFP

Turkey marks third anniversary of failed coup

ANKARA, Turkey — Turkey marks the anniversary of a bloody attempt to overthrow President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in 2016, an event whose impact is still felt in the country.

Nearly 250 people were killed — excluding coup-plotters — and over 2,000 others were injured after a rogue military faction tried to wrest power from the president, but thousands took to the streets in response to Erdogan’s call to defeat the uprising.

This third anniversary comes at a difficult moment for Erdogan, faced with a weakened economy, worsening relations with NATO ally the United States, and a defeat for his party in the recent Istanbul mayoral election to a more unified opposition.

Erdogan will take part in a series of events in the capital Ankara before giving a speech in Istanbul and inaugurating a museum dedicated to the failed coup on July 15, 2016. After laying flowers at a special monument for the coup victims in Ankara at his presidential palace complex, Erdogan takes part in a ceremony at the parliament, which was also bombed during the attempted putsch.

The day, known as “15 July” in Turkish, has become a national holiday in Turkey.

Ankara accuses ally-turned-foe Fethullah Gulen, a Muslim cleric exiled in the United States, of ordering the attempted coup and his movement of being a “terrorist” organization.

— AFP

Italy detains 3 in seizure of weapons, missile, Nazi plaques

ROME — Police in northern Italy detain three men, including one linked to a neo-fascist Italian political party, after uncovering a huge stash of automatic weapons, a missile and material featuring Nazi symbols.

Police say the discoveries stem from a previous investigation into Italians who took part in the Russian-backed insurgency in eastern Ukraine.

In a statement, Turin police say one of the men arrested had in 2001 run unsuccessfully as a Senate candidate for the neo-fascist Forza Nuova party. At his home in Gallarate, police find nine assault weapons, nearly 30 hunting rifles, pistols and bayonets as well as ammunition and antique Nazi plaques featuring swastikas.

Two other men are detained after police find a French-made missile at an airport hangar that they apparently were seeking to sell.

Italian police stand by a missile seized at an airport hangar near Pavia, northern Italy, following an investigation into Italians who took part in the Russian-backed insurgency in eastern Ukraine, in Turin, Italy, July 15, 2019.  (Tino Romano/ANSA via AP)

— AP

Trump again uses Israel to lash progressive Democrats

US President Donald Trump continues to put Israel at the center of his tirade against progressive women in the US Congress, saying they “have made Israel feel abandoned by the US.”

He writes: “If Democrats want to unite around the foul language & racist hatred spewed from the mouths and actions of these very unpopular & unrepresentative Congresswomen, it will be interesting to see how it plays out. I can tell you that they have made Israel feel abandoned by the U.S.”

20 lightly hurt in multiple-vehicle crash north of Tel Aviv

Twenty people are lightly hurt in a multiple-vehicle collision on the Route 2 highway connecting Tel Aviv and Haifa.

A truck, a bus and two cars are involved in the accident, which takes place on the southbound lanes near Beit Yanai, located next to the coastal city of Netanya.

India hunts for fault that aborted historic moon mission

NEW DELHI — India’s space organization is examining the technical snag that led to the aborting of the launch Monday of a spacecraft intended to land on the far side of the moon, an official says.

The Chandrayaan-2 mission was called off shortly before liftoff early Monday by the Indian Space Research Organization when a “technical snag” was observed in the 640-ton, 14-story rocket launcher.

Vivek Singh, the ISRO’s media director, says the organization should be able to choose a new launch date within days. He declines to go into details.

Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO)’s Geosynchronous Satellite launch Vehicle (GSLV) MkIII carrying Chandrayaan-2 stands at Satish Dhawan Space Center after the mission was aborted at the last minute at Sriharikota, in southern India, July 15, 2019. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

Chandrayaan, the Sanskrit word for “moon craft,” is designed for a soft landing on the lunar south pole and to send a rover to explore water deposits confirmed by a previous orbiting Indian space mission.

If India manages the soft landing, it would be only the fourth country to do so after the US, Russia and China. Israel’s attempt in April failed when the lander’s braking system failed to work in time to slow the lander down and prevent a crash.

An Indian spectator folds a flag as others leave after the Chandrayaan-2 mission was aborted at Sriharikota, in southern India, July 15, 2019. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

— AP and Times of Israel staff

French-Iranian academic arrested in Iran

PARIS, France — A French-Iranian academic based at Paris’s prestigious Sciences Po university has been arrested in Iran and denied contact with consular staff, the French foreign ministry says.

“France calls on the Iranian authorities to shed full light on Mrs. (Fariba) Adelkhah’s situation and repeats its demands, particularly with regard to an immediate authorization for consular access,” it says in a statement.

Foreign-based Iranian media report Adelkhah, an anthropologist, was arrested on suspicion of espionage.

— AFP

Computing pioneer Turing the new face of British 50-pound note

LONDON — Codebreaker and computing pioneer Alan Turing has been chosen as the face of Britain’s new 50 pound note, the Bank of England announces.

Governor Mark Carney says Turing, who did groundbreaking work on computers and artificial intelligence, was “a giant on whose shoulders so many now stand.”

During World War II Turing worked at the secret Bletchley Park code-breaking center, where he helped crack Nazi Germany’s secret codes by creating the “Turing bombe,” a forerunner of modern computers. He also developed the “Turing Test” to measure artificial intelligence.

After the war he was prosecuted for homosexuality, which was then illegal, and forcibly treated with female hormones. He died at age 41 in 1954 after eating an apple laced with cyanide. Turing received a posthumous apology from the British government in 2009, and a royal pardon in 2013.

Bank of England Governor Mark Carney poses next to the artwork for the concept of the new 50 pound notes, after announcing that Second World War code-breaker and computing pioneer Alan Turing has been selected to feature on the new notes, at the Science and Industry Museum in Manchester, England, July 15, 2019. (Peter Byrne/PA via AP)

The Turing banknote will enter circulation in 2021. It includes a photo of the scientist, mathematical formulae and technical drawings, and a quote from Turing: “This is only a foretaste of what is to come, and only the shadow of what is going to be.”

— AP

Ethiopian-Israelis protest in Jerusalem after cop’s release, 7 arrested

Dozens of Ethiopian-Israeli activists are protesting the release of the cop who shot and killed Solomon Tekah on June 30.

The protesters are blocking intersections near the Knesset in Jerusalem.

Police say seven have been arrested.

The death of 19-year-old Tekah sparked nationwide protests last week.

Ethiopian-Israelis protest outside the Knesset in Jerusalem on July 15, 2019, after the release of a police officer who shot and killed a young man of Ethiopian origin in Haifa on June 30. (Menahem Kahana/AFP)
Ethiopian-Israelis protest outside the Knesset in Jerusalem on July 15, 2019, after the release of a police officer who shot and killed a young man of Ethiopian origin in Haifa on June 30. (Menahem Kahana/AFP)
Ethiopian-Israelis protest outside the Knesset in Jerusalem on July 15, 2019, after the release of a police officer who shot and killed a young man of Ethiopian origin in Haifa on June 30. (Menahem Kahana/AFP)
Ethiopian-Israelis protest outside the Knesset in Jerusalem on July 15, 2019, after the release of a police officer who shot and killed a young man of Ethiopian origin in Haifa on June 30. (Menahem Kahana/AFP)

The officer, who has not been publicly named but is expected to face charges of reckless homicide, was off duty when he shot Tekah in Haifa. He has claimed he was trying to break up a street fight and was set upon by three youths who hurled stones at him, endangering his life. He said he did not target Tekah, and instead fired at the ground.

The shooting sparked renewed accusations of police brutality and racism toward the Ethiopian community. Days after the shooting, protesters across Israel blocked roads, burned tires and denounced what they called systemic discrimination against Israelis of Ethiopian descent.

New Zealand lawmaker says Jesus’s mom was ‘Palestinian refugee’

A lawmaker for New Zealand’s Greens Party says Jesus’s mother Mary and her husband Joseph were Palestinian refugees.

Golriz Ghahraman on Thursday wrote on Twitter: “They were literally Palestinian refugees. And she (Mary) normally had her hair covered because that’s what modesty looked like in her culture…”

She had been answering a tweet suggesting that as described by the New Testament, the parents of Christ were refugees.

Ghahraman’s tweet, which has since been deleted without explanation, prompted criticism from Jewish community representatives.

A spokesperson of the New Zealand Jewish Council, Juliet Moses, tells the Jewish Telegraphic Agency: “Ms. Ghahraman, by refusing to acknowledge that Jesus was Jewish, including when many people pointed out her error, is continuing to erase that connection, a favorite tactic of those who aim to delegitimize the modern day Jewish presence in the land.”

She also says that “calling Mary and Joseph Palestinian refugees is ahistorical and disrespectful to the Jewish community, and no doubt the Christian community too.”

— JTA

Iran demands ‘effective’ European steps to save nuclear deal

Iran urges the European parties to the 2015 nuclear deal “to take practical, effective and responsible decisions” to save the agreement.

“We stress that the continued voluntary and goodwill based actions by the Islamic Republic of Iran are rooted in the principle of reciprocity of rights and duties” in the nuclear deal, the foreign ministry in Tehran says in a statement.

On Sunday, the European parties to the deal — Britain, France and Germany — called for dialogue as tensions further intensified between Iran and the United States. In a statement, the so-called E3 expressed concern the deal was at risk of further unraveling but said it was up to Iran to ensure its survival.

US President Donald Trump in 2018 announced Washington was pulling out of the deal, to the dismay of its European allies.

“Any expectation for Iran to return to the conditions prior to May 8, 2019 without proof of any political will and practical ability of the European parties” to ensure sanctions relief “is an unrealistic expectation,” the ministry statement says.

— AFP

Harry Potter star Radcliffe cries over anti-Semitic treatment of great-grandpa

Actor Daniel Radcliffe breaks down in tears upon reading on television his great grandfather’s suicide note, possibly after suffering anti-Semitic prejudice at the hands of British police.

The scene was filmed for the television show “Who Do You Think You Are,” a television show in which celebrities are presented with dramatic findings about their own family, The Sun of London reports. The BBC show’s episode about Radcliffe’s family is scheduled to air on July 22.

The Harry Potter actor’s relative, Samuel Gershon, had been ruined by a 1936 robbery at the family’s jewelry business in the London neighborhood of Hatton Garden. Police accused the Jewish businessman of faking the raid to claim insurance cash in what may have been anti-Semitic treatment by the officers. Gershon took his life aged 42. The insurance company eventually paid the claim.

Evidence suggesting that detectives were anti-Semitic and reluctant to properly investigate the crime include a police report that said, according to The Sun: “Jews are so frequently responsible for the bringing down of their own business premises.”

Radcliffe says it was “very jarring to see being a Jew to be taken as a piece of evidence in itself.” Everything his great-grandfather “had worked for and that his father had worked for, has sort of been destroyed,” The Sun quotes Radcliffe, who is Jewish, as saying upon revisiting the case in front of the show’s cameras.

— JTA

Despite US pressure, Russia continues to deliver S-400 parts to Turkey

ANKARA, Turkey — The Turkish defense ministry says two more Russian cargo planes have landed at an airfield near the capital, Ankara, as Russia continues to deliver parts of its S-400 missile defense system to Turkey in defiance of US objections.

The ministry says on Twitter the two planes arrived at Murted Air Base on Monday, bringing Russian-made components for the fourth day running. They are the eighth and ninth planes to land at Murted since Friday.

The United States has repeatedly warned Turkey that it will impose sanctions on the NATO-member country and exclude it from the F-35 stealth fighter jet program if Ankara does not drop its S-400 purchase.

Turkey has refused to bow to US pressure, saying its defense purchases are a matter of national sovereignty.

A Russian transport aircraft carrying military vehicles and equipment, parts of the S-400 air defense system, is seen at Murted military airport in Ankara, Turkey, July 12, 2019. (Turkish Defense Ministry via AP, Pool)

— AP

Arab parties continue to squabble over unified list

Balad and Ta’al are boycotting a press conference today in Nazareth meant to call on Arab parties to unite ahead of the September 17 race.

The best-ever showing for Arab parties, some 10.5 percent of total votes cast, occurred in the 2015 election, the first time all the Arab-majority parties — Hadash, Balad, Ra’am and Ta’al — ran in a single unified list.

After splitting in half ahead of the April 2019 race to two alliances, Hadash-Ta’al and Ra’am-Balad, the parties lost about a quarter of their total votes.

That has led to new calls to reunite in the hope of attracting once again a larger turnout among Arab voters. But the leaders of the various parties have squabbled over placement on the joint list.

The Nazareth presser is being convened by Hadash and Ra’am, and is seen by the other two parties as an effort to pressure them to accept lower positions on the shared list, the Haaretz daily reports.

Trump still lashing out at ‘Communist’ congresswomen – and still using Israel

US President Donald Trump is continuing his attacks on the progressive Congresswomen whom he yesterday told to “go back” to countries they “came from.”

And he’s continuing to bring up Israel in his comments, posted to Twitter, which are a mostly accurate quote from statements to Fox News made earlier today by Sen. Lindsey Graham.

Trump tweets that Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez “and this crowd are a bunch of Communists, they hate Israel, they hate our own country….they accuse people who support Israel as doing it for the Benjamin’s.”

He adds that they are “Anti-Semitic, they are Anti-America,” and says “they talk about Israel like they’re a bunch of thugs, not victims of the entire region…. Make them the face of the future of the Democrat Party, you will destroy the Democrat Party. Their policies will destroy our Country!”

Jewish Dem slams Trump’s ‘attempt to use Israel as a diversion’

An American Jewish Democratic activist slams US President Donald Trump’s “racist diatribe” against progressive congresswomen, and says Trump’s repeated references to Israel in his accusations are “a transparent attempt to use Israel as a diversion.”

In a statement to the press, Halie Soifer, executive director of the Jewish Democratic Council of America, says: “President Trump’s justification of his racist diatribe is a transparent attempt to use Israel as a diversion, which we strongly reject. Trump has exposed himself as America’s ‘Racist in Chief,’ and Republicans’ silence is complicity in his hateful agenda.”

The Democratic Jewish organization says it “promotes foreign and domestic policies consistent with socially progressive, pro-Israel, Jewish community values.”

Palestinians denounce Trump tweets against Rep. Tlaib

Palestinians denounce US President Donald Trump’s attack on US Rep. Rashida Tlaib, accusing him of racism and saying it once again proves his bias against the Palestinian people.

Tlaib, a US-born Michigan Democrat and daughter of Palestinian immigrants, was one of four congresswomen of color who were targeted in an ongoing Trump Twitter barrage over the weekend.

Trump said the women should go back to the “broken and crime infested” places they came from, ignoring the fact that all are American citizens and three, including Tlaib, were born in the US. Trump also accused them of saying “terrible things” about the US and said they “hate Israel.”

Although Tlaib has never lived in the West Bank, she still has relatives in the area and is widely seen as a local hero for making her way to the highest levels of American government.

Bassam Tlaib, an uncle of the congresswoman who lives in the West Bank, calls the president’s comments “a racist statement meant to target Rashida because she has Palestinian roots. This statement proves that Trump is anti-Palestinian, anti-Islam and completely biased toward Israel.”

Ibrahim Milhim, spokesman for the Palestinian Authority, says Trump’s statement is an “insult” to the office of the presidency and the laws of the US. “It’s an insult to the Statue of Liberty, America’s most famous symbol, an insult to the American values where migrants from all over the world are united as one nation under one law,” he says.

— AP

Hamas distances itself from official who urged murder of ‘Jews everywhere’

Hamas attempts to distance itself from comments a senior official in the terror group made last week calling on members of the Palestinian diaspora to kill Jews around the world.

“These statements do not represent the movement’s official positions and consistent, adopted policies that stipulate that our conflict is with the occupation which is occupying our land and sullying our holy sites and not with Jews around the world or with Judaism as a religion,” Hamas says in a statement on its website.

The Islamist terror group, which is sworn to Israel’s destruction, makes the move following a flurry of condemnations of its senior official Fathi Hammad’s comments, including from PLO secretary general Saeb Erekat and UN envoy Nikolay Mladenov.

Hammad, a Hamas politburo member known for his fiery rhetoric, made the remarks in a speech at a protest on the border between Gaza and Israel on Friday.

“Our patience has run out. We are on the verge of exploding. If this siege is not undone, we will explode in the face of our enemies, with God’s permission and glory,” Hammad said, referring to significant Israeli restrictions on the movement of people and goods between Israel and Gaza.

“The explosion is not only going to be in Gaza but also in the [West] Bank and abroad, if God wills. But our brothers [in the diaspora] are still preparing. They are trying to prepare. They are warming up. A long time has passed with them warming up. All of you 7 million Palestinians abroad, enough of the warming up. You have Jews everywhere and we must attack every Jew on the globe by way of slaughter and killing, if God permits. Enough of the warming up,” he added.

Israel has said that it maintains the restrictions on movement into and out of Gaza to prevent Hamas and other terror groups from importing weaponry.

Hamas’s charter, which was issued in the late 1980s, is rife with anti-Semitic language and calls for Israel’s destruction. While Hamas issued a policy document in 2017 that said its “conflict is with the Zionist project not with the Jews because of their religion,” it did not nullify its charter.

— Adam Rasgon

PA envoy criticizes UK’s May for not recognizing Palestinian statehood

Husam Zomlot, the Palestinian envoy in London, commends outgoing British premier Theresa May for “her positions on Jerusalem, illegality of settlements & UNRWA,” he says on Twitter.

But he adds that her refusal to recognize Palestinian statehood “might prove lethal to the prospects of the two-state solution.”

Haredi radio station angry at feminist group’s lawsuit pays with 300,000 coins

An ultra-Orthodox radio station finds a creative if pointedly passive-aggressive way to hand over a court-ordered payment to a feminist Orthodox activist group.

The group, Kolech, had sued over the Kol Barama radio station’s refusal to allow women to be interviewed in its broadcasts.

The court ruled in Kolech’s favor, ordering Kol Barama to host women on its radio shows and pay Kolech its expenses and fees totaling NIS 30,000.

Yesterday, the station’s staffers arrived at Kolech’s headquarters with boxes and buckets bearing 300,000 10 agorot coins, paying the NIS 30,000 it owed using the smallest coin denomination in circulation.

The station then celebrated its tantrum with a video titled “Operation Greed” posted online that depicts it as a prank.

A staffer then tells the camera, “You should learn that the Haredi public isn’t a sucker. Don’t interfere, definitely not out of greed.”

Erdogan hails S-400 deal, as Turkey marks 2016 coup bid anniversary

ANKARA, Turkey — President Recep Tayyip Erdogan hails the controversial delivery of a Russian missile defense system, despite the threat of US sanctions, as Turkey marks the third anniversary of a bloody coup attempt.

Just days before the anniversary, the first batch of the Russian S-400 defense system was delivered to Turkey despite repeated US calls for them to cancel the deal or face punishment.

“We have begun to receive our S-400s. Some said, ‘they cannot buy them’… God willing the final part of this (delivery) will be in April 2020,” Erdogan tells a crowd of several thousand in Ankara.

The anniversary comes at a difficult moment for Erdogan. He faces a weakened economy, worsening relations with NATO ally the United States over the S-400 purchase, and a humiliating loss for his party in the recent Istanbul local election.

Erdogan says Turkey’s “next target was joint production with Russia” of the next missile defense system.

— AFP

UN: Hunger on the rise worldwide for 3rd straight year, 821 million affected

More than 821 million people suffered from hunger, food insecurity, and malnutrition worldwide last year, the United Nations reports — the third year in a row that the number has risen.

After decades of decline, food insecurity began to increase in 2015 — and reversing the trend is one of the 2030 targets of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

But getting to a world where no one is suffering from hunger by then remains an “immense challenge,” the report says.

“The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World” is produced by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and other UN agencies including the World Health Organization.

Malnutrition remains widespread in Africa, where around 20 percent of the population is affected, and in Asia, where more than 12% of people experience it. In Latin America and the Caribbean, 7% of people are affected.

Adding the number of people suffering from famine to those hit by food insecurity gives a total of more than two billion.

The FAO says current efforts are insufficient to meet the goal of halving the number of children whose growth is stunted by malnutrition by 2030. Around 149 million children currently suffer from hunger-related growth delays.

— AFP

Orthodox feminist group unfazed by radio station’s 300,000-coin payment

The Orthodox feminist group Kolech responds to the Haredi radio station Kol Baramah, which paid a court-ordered fine of 30,000 shekels to the group early this morning in 300,000 10-agorot coins.

“The Kol Baramah gentlemen were here this morning,” a post on the group’s Facebook page says. “They dropped off in our offices the money that the court ordered them to pay.

“We loved the gimmick,” it adds. “We didn’t really feel the insult. For some reason, we believe it was worth it to ensure that today there are wonderful women broadcasting on Kol Baramah Radio.”

The post concludes: “Remember: We will gladly accept every 10 agorot for a good cause!”

EU holds Iran nuclear crisis talks as Tehran issues fresh threats

BRUSSELS, Belgium — European foreign ministers hold crisis talks on saving the beleaguered Iran nuclear deal, as Britain warns the “small window” for success is closing and Tehran issues fresh threats of restarting its atomic program.

Tensions in the Gulf have soared since last year, when the United States pulled out of the 2015 deal and reimposed sanctions on Iran, hammering its economy and prompting Tehran to break limits on uranium enrichment and stockpiling.

The European Union is desperately trying to prevent the deal unraveling completely, seeing it as the best way to stop Tehran acquiring atomic weapons. The issue is top of the agenda as ministers from the bloc meet in Brussels.

But Iran is piling fresh pressure on Europe, demanding concrete measures to give it relief from US sanctions and threatening to return its nuclear program to where it was before the curbs imposed by the 2015 deal.

British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt — who held phone talks with his US and Iranian counterparts over the weekend — insists “the deal isn’t dead yet. Iran is still a good year away from developing a nuclear weapon. We think there is still some closing but small window to keep the deal alive,” Hunt tells reporters.

Britain, France and Germany — the three European parties to the deal — on Sunday issued a joint statement saying they were “extremely concerned” by Iran’s recent breaches as well as by US sanctions, and called for dialogue to resolve the crisis.

— AFP

Hamas official tries to walk back call for Palestinians abroad to kill Jews

Senior Hamas official Fathi Hammad attempts to walk back comments he made last week, in which he called on members of the Palestinian diaspora to kill Jews around the world.

He says in a statement posted on the terror group’s website that he supports “Hamas’s consistent, adopted policy of limiting its resistance to the Zionist occupation that usurps Palestine’s land and defiles its holy sites.”

He adds: “Our resistance to this usurping entity will continue in all of its forms whether that is armed or popular peaceful struggle.”

Hammad, a Hamas politburo member known for his fiery rhetoric, made the remarks in a speech at a protest on the Israel-Gaza border on Friday.

“Our patience has run out. We are on the verge of exploding. If this siege is not undone, we will explode in the face of our enemies, with God’s permission and glory,” Hammad said, referring to Israeli restrictions on the movement of people and goods between Israel and Gaza. “The explosion is not only going to be in Gaza, but also in the [West] Bank and abroad, if God wills. But our brothers [in the diaspora] are still preparing. They are trying to prepare. They are warming up. A long time has passed with them warming up. All of you 7 million Palestinians abroad, enough of the warming up. You have Jews everywhere and we must attack every Jew on the globe by way of slaughter and killing, if God permits. Enough of the warming up,” he added.

Israel has said that it maintains the restrictions on movement in and out of Gaza to prevent Hamas and other terror groups from importing weaponry.

— Adam Rasgon

Former GOP candidate Kasich slams Trump tweets against congresswomen

An unsuccessful contender against Donald Trump for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination says Trump’s tweets telling Democratic congresswomen of color to “go back” to their countries is “deplorable and beneath the dignity of the office.”

John Kasich is a former governor of Ohio and a former member of Congress. He says in a statement that Republicans must speak out against comments that “create deep animosity — maybe even hatred.” He says Trump’s comments contradict the “foundation of our country and all that we teach our children.”

Kasich sought the presidential nomination as a moderate.

Trump criticized the four progressive freshmen with tweets Sunday that echoed racist taunts long used to insult non-white people.

Democrats have effusively criticized Trump. Virtually all congressional Republicans have remained silent.

— AP

ADL lashes ‘racist’ Trump tweets for using Jews, Israel ‘as a shield’

The Anti-Defamation League condemns US President Donald Trump’s tweets targeting four minority women members of Congress.

“As Jews, we are all too familiar with this kind of divisive prejudice,” says ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt in a statement.

“While ADL has publicly disagreed with these congresswomen on some issues, the president is echoing the racist talking points of white nationalists and cynically using the Jewish people and the state of Israel as a shield to double down on his remarks. Politicizing the widespread, bipartisan support for Israel and throwing around accusations of anti-Semitism is damaging to the security of Israel and the Jewish community. He should lead by example, stop politicizing these issues and stop smearing members of Congress.”

EU’s Mogherini: Iran’s breaches of nuclear deal ‘reversible’

EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini says Iran’s renewed uranium enrichment to levels beyond what is allowed under the 2015 nuclear deal is “reversible” and does not constitute a breach of the deal.

The 28 EU foreign ministers insist in a statement from their meeting in Brussels that recent Iranian actions do not necessarily condemn the whole agreement.

“We note that technically all the steps that have been taken — and that we regret have been taken — are reversible. So we hope and we invite Iran to reverse the steps,” says Mogherini.

“The deviations are not significant enough to think that Iran has definitively broken the agreement,” says Spanish Foreign Minister Josep Borrell, who is in line to succeed Mogherini this fall.

The EU currently has few direct measures for offsetting US economic sanctions against Tehran that have crippled the country’s economy, and the bloc faces US threats to target any EU companies that attempt to trade with Iran.

Noting that Iran was “still a good year away” from potentially developing a nuclear bomb, British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt says there was still a “small window to keep the deal alive.”

— Agencies

Mogherini: We don’t consider Iran’s non-compliance to be ‘significant’

Reuters quotes EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini telling a press conference in Brussels a short time ago that, “For the time being, none of the parties to the agreement has signaled their intention to invoke this article [the nuclear deal’s dispute mechanism], which means that none of them for the moment, for the time being with the current data we have, in particular from the IAEA, [think] that the non-compliance is considered to be significant non-compliance.”

Netanyahu: Some in Europe won’t wake up until Iranian nukes land on them

Netanyahu responds angrily to the European Union’s statement that Iran’s non-compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal is “reversible” and will not trigger European sanctions.

“Apparently, there are some in Europe who won’t wake up until Iranian nuclear missiles land on European soil,” he accuses, in Hebrew on his social media accounts. “Then it will be too late.”

He adds: “In any case, we will do everything to prevent Iran from getting nuclear weapons.”

Gantz slams EU: ‘Iran is a global problem’

Responding to the EU’s statement that Iran’s nuclear breaches are “reversible” and not “significant,” Blue and White chief Benny Gantz slams the Europeans for forgetting the threat posed by the Iranian regime.

“This evening it is important to remind our friends in Europe that Iran is a global problem that threatens the peace of the world,” he says in a statement. “On this issue, there can be no politicking. Israel cannot allow Iran to develop a nuclear capability — and neither can you.”

Canada joins condemnation of Trump tweets at minority women lawmakers

Two close US allies are condemning US President Donald Trump’s incendiary weekend tweets about four Democratic congresswomen.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Trump’s comments about the congresswomen are “not how we do things in Canada.”

Trump tweeted the liberal lawmakers of color should go back to the “broken and crime infested” countries they came from. All four are American citizens and three of them were born in the United States.

Trudeau says “Canadians and indeed people around the world know exactly what I think about those particular comments.”

A spokesman for British Prime Minister Theresa May had earlier said the prime minister thinks “the language which was used to refer to the women was completely unacceptable.”

— AP

Netanyahu: EU response to Iran ‘reminiscent of 1930s appeasement’

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is not holding back in his criticism of the EU’s statement a short time ago that Iran’s breaches of the 2015 nuclear deal will not bring European sanctions.

The EU’s response “is reminiscent of European appeasement in the 1930s,” he says in a Hebrew-language statement. “Then, too, there were those who buried their heads in the sand and did not see the coming danger.”

Trump’s education secretary: Efforts to boycott Israel are ‘pernicious threat’

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos says the movement to boycott Israel has become a “pernicious threat” and a source of anti-Semitism on college campuses.

DeVos makes the comments while speaking at a Justice Department summit on combating anti-Semitism. She says supporters of the boycott movement are “bullies” who claim to stand for human rights, but actually harbor bias against Jews.

DeVos says Israel has friends in the Education Department and that her own visits to the Holy Land have shaped her in many ways.

— AP

Unbowed by furor over tweets, Trump tells congresswomen to ‘leave’

Unbowed by criticism of his racist tweets, US President Donald Trump is telling members of Congress: “If you hate our country… you can leave.”

Trump is responding to furor over his weekend tweets saying that four Democratic congresswomen of color should go back to the “broken and crime infested” countries they came from.

That’s despite the fact that all of the women are American citizens and three of them were born in the US.

Trump says at the White House, “If you’re not happy in the US, if you’re complaining all the time, you can leave, you can leave right now.”

Democrats condemned Trump’s tweets as racist and divisive, but Trump says that “a lot of people love” what he said.

— AP

Luxembourg PM boycotts Israeli envoy’s farewell over Peretz’s comments on gays

Luxembourg’s Prime Minister Xavier Bettel boycotts the farewell dinner for departing Israeli Ambassador Simona Frankel over Education Minister Rafi Peretz’s comments over the weekend approving of so-called “conversion therapy” for gays.

Bettel, who is gay, is considered friendly to Israel among European leaders, and visited the Jewish state earlier this year.

Bettel tells reporters he respects the Israeli envoy, but could not participate in an official event of the Israeli government after Peretz’s comments in a Channel 12 interview broadcast Friday.

Bettel was to be the guest of honor at the Monday dinner.

Israel asks Russia to pressure Hezbollah to leave Syrian Golan — report

Israel is asking Russia to act to remove Hezbollah forces from the Syrian Golan, Israel’s Kan public broadcaster reports.

Russia and Israel worked together to push Iranian forces away from the border region, Kan notes, and Israel is asking Moscow to help it do the same for the Lebanese terror group, which has been making inroads in villages near the border with Israel in recent years.

Ethiopian-Israeli protesters detained earlier today in Jerusalem are released

Seven Ethiopian-Israelis arrested during protests earlier today in Jerusalem are released.

They were detained when protesters rushed into traffic on streets adjacent to the High Court of Justice to protest the release of a police officer who shot and killed a 19-year-old Ethiopian-Israeli on June 30 in Haifa. The cop reportedly faces charges of reckless homicide.

Netanyahu to sign trade agreement with South Korea sans settlements – report

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is slated to fly to South Korea at the end of the month for his first trip to the Asian nation, where he will sign a landmark free trade agreement between the two countries that will not apply to the West Bank and the Golan Heights, Channel 13 reports.

Citing unnamed senior government sources, the station says Netanyahu’s trip, like similar trips to Brazil and elsewhere earlier this year, is also part of his effort to project a worldly image ahead of the September 17 election.

The trade deal will lower prices for Korean-made products and, officials believe, increase Israeli exports to the country.

But the agreement includes a “territorial clause” that excludes products produced by Israelis in the West Bank, East Jerusalem or the Golan Heights.

Israel has long opposed including such clauses in trade agreements, and the refusal has long stymied efforts to seal the trade deal with Seoul, Channel 13 says.

The Netanyahu government has now lifted its opposition, but says Israel will add to the agreement notice of its protest over the clause and notes that it does not see in its acquiescence a precedent related to the future standing of the settlements.

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Netanyahu: Some in Europe won’t wake up until Iranian nukes land on them

Netanyahu responds angrily to the European Union’s statement that Iran’s non-compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal is “reversible” and will not trigger European sanctions.

“Apparently, there are some in Europe who won’t wake up until Iranian nuclear missiles land on European soil,” he accuses, in Hebrew on his social media accounts. “Then it will be too late.”

He adds: “In any case, we will do everything to prevent Iran from getting nuclear weapons.”