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December 9, 2016 / 9 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘government’

Nadav Argaman Takes Over As Head of Shin Bet (ISA)

Sunday, May 8th, 2016

Former Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) deputy director Nadav Argaman officially takes the helm today of the domestic intelligence agency.

He will be sworn in Sunday afternoon. Argaman has spent his entire career working in the security field.

Argaman was appointed earlier this month to take over as head of the agency, replacing outgoing leader Yoram Cohen.

The Shin Bet is responsible for dealing with terrorist activities on both sides of the 1949 Armistice Line (also known as the “Green Line”).

Hana Levi Julian

Turkey’s PM Ahmet Davutoglu Resigns

Thursday, May 5th, 2016

Turkey’s Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu resigned from his post on Thursday afternoon.

Davutoglu told journalists at a news conference that followed the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party’s central executive committee meeting, “I have worked with my heart and soul. There was no fallout from the AK Party structure during my chairmanship.

Davutoglu explained that his decision to resign was made “out of necessity,” saying, “I think that it is right to step down for the continuity of AK Party’s unity and solidarity,” according to Turkey’s Daily Sabah news site.

Erdogan has long been pressuring the party – and the country – for a Constitutional change that would create a presidential leadership government, one without a prime minister.

“Strong AK Party governments will continue in the next four years. Determined operations against terror groups are successfully continuing,” he said. “No investments were left unfinished and there were no setbacks during my tenure as prime minister,” he added.

Davutoglu said he would not run as a candidate for party leadership in the May 22 party congress. However, he said, “I will not tolerate any speculations about my relationship with President [Recep Tayyip] Erdogan. My loyalty to the president will last to the end.”

It is not yet clear how Davutoglu’s resignation will affect Turkey’s diplomatic talks with Israel.

Hana Levi Julian

Former PM Ehud Olmert Enters Prison Today

Monday, February 15th, 2016

Former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert entered prison at 10 am Monday morning to become the first Israeli head of state to serve a jail term.

He is to stay in a special wing at the Ma’asiyahu Prison in Ramle, with extra security to protect him at all times outside his cell.

Only specially screened inmates are allowed in his wing, and the wing itself has a separate area for eating, medical and other activities, apart from the majority of other inmates. These measures are not only designed to protect Olmert – they are also meant to ensure that no prisoner will be able to extract information from the former head of state.

Olmert’s sentence is set for a minimum of 18 months but could run as long as 27 months, depending on the outcome of current appeals.

Olmert released a video statement to the media earlier Monday professing his innocence. In his statement Olmert again denied his guilt after being convicted of bribery and graft.

“At this hour it is important for me to say once again that I am innocent of charges that I took bribes. None of the charges stemmed from the time during which I served as prime minister,” Olmert said in the clip.

On the one hand, he called the prison sentence “an unusual, serious event that shows the strength of Israeli democracy.”

But he said his particular case “snowballed for reasons that were not related to legal considerations,” as if to accuse the judicial system of being guilty of political corruption instead.

He did, however, grudgingly admit to “making mistakes,” albeit “not of a criminal nature.”

Hana Levi Julian

Open Rebellion: Israeli State Attorneys Refuse to Obey Justice Minister Shaked

Tuesday, November 24th, 2015

(JNi.media) Limor Peled, Chair of the Israeli State Attorneys’ Union, on Monday sent a letter to the state attorneys demanding that they refrain from cooperating with the prosecution audit commission until its status is anchored in legislation, Ha’aretz reported Monday. The letter is in direct opposition to instructions sent by Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein and Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked (Bayit Yehudi).

The prosecutors’ union chair appears adamant in attempting to block Shaked’s move, which would enhance the control of the legislative and executive branches over judiciary decisions—a democratizing direction Shaked has been pursuing.

Shaked has revealed recently that she weighs splitting up the state attorney’s office and the AG, while placing both of them under the ministry’s control.

Justice Minister Shaked told Ha’aretz in response that “if the prosecutors’ union decided to take this step, I see it as a bullying, unwise, not particularly fair and arrogant act.”

Peled wrote:

“The Justice Minister and the Attorney General made it clear that the audit commission was established under their ‘administrative authority.’ With all due respect, we believe that there is no ‘administrative authority’ for the establishment of an independent body, external and internal, to audit/discipline [prosecutors], and since it has become clear that the commission operates in a disorderly and inappropriate format, its activity should be stopped and it must not be allowed to continue operating in the same format.”

Last October, retired judge Eliezer Goldberg (also former state comptroller and ombudsman for complaints against judges), published his report on the need to audit the prosecutor’s office with a strong recommendation that despite the opposition of the prosecutors the public should be allowed to file complaints against them. Goldberg recommend that the activity of the watchdog commission be regulated through legislation (currently it is founded on a government decree). He also favors making it possible to file complaints against the Attorney General, who to date has remained outside the reach of the audit commission.

The Goldberg report was a blow to the prosecution, the State Attorney and the Attorney General. Attorney General Weinstein objected to being subject to audits because he viewed the commission as being subordinate to his office, helping him monitor the prosecutor’s office. Placing both offices under the same auditing body would subject them to an equal review by the Justice Ministry, which may be a step in the direction–advocated by Shaked–to split the two department entirely.

The union’s decision came in response to a letter sent two weeks ago by Shaked and Weinstein to State Prosecutor Shai Nitzan, which stressed that until the completion of the corresponding legislative process authorizing it, the audit commission would continue its work: “We are currently examining how to implement the Goldberg committee’s recommendations in a legislation. Until the implementation of the format that will be decided, the commission will continue to act in its current format,” the Shaked and Weinstein letter said.

Union chair Peled on Monday went as far as to instruct her members not to cooperate with the commission, “including in responding, providing information, transferring cases, answering inquiries or meetings with commission officials and in any other way, directly or indirectly, both regarding systemic review and individual audits.” She also instructed her members, all state-employed attorneys, to not enter data into the computerized system, as it has been determined that the audit commission would have access to it.

JNi.Media

Netanyahu Tells Security Forces ‘You Are Doing Blessed Work’

Thursday, October 15th, 2015

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu thanked security forces in Jerusalem on Wednesday (14 October 2015) at a Border Guard Police base in Jerusalem and told them they are doing “blessed work.”

The prime minister’s remarks came in a brief address to the officers after he was updated on the deployment of forces in the capital, and after a night in which there were two terror attacks within the space of little more than an hour.

Netanyahu met with units from the national Israel Police and Border Guard Police, including some who had foiled attacks in recent days. He thanked and praised the officers and fighters for their composure, fighting spirit and courage, urging them to ‘watch out for themselves’ as he expressed thanks on behalf of the security cabinet.

“I came, first of all, to express my appreciation and that of Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan and Israel Police Acting Commissioner Bentzi Sau for the extraordinary lifesaving work you are doing, bravely, with a lot of ingenuity, professionalism, but mostly courage,” Netanyahu said. “I want to thank each and every one of you, and there are men and women who acted in real time.

“Anyone who was a combat soldier knows what it means and can appreciate it,” he commented in a nod towards his own past as a fighter in the IDF’s elite Sayeret Matkal special forces unit. “And there is a medic here who saved lives with extraordinary resourcefulness,” he noted. “You are doing blessed work.

“There is no substitute for very dense deployments with mobility, with the ability to arrive at the scene of the attack or to be present at the scene to prevent it in real time and to prevent deterioration into even worse situations. I know it demands discretion on your part, but have no doubt: You have full backing, from me, the Government and from the people of Israel in order to act more decisively, firstly to save lives and to protect yourselves. Guidelines have always existed, but I think they have been sharpened, and I see that you are implementing them with common sense and great determination. It matters.

“I cannot tell you how long this will continue,” he said. “There are people here who are willing to die. Every time that there is a new phenomenon, it always shaves off even a tiny population, willing to commit suicide. We do not know how many will commit suicide, but the number is not infinite, far from it. Therefore, in the past, we could also deal with these phenomena, even more difficult ones.

“At the moment, it is not so organized, as you know, so there is no substitute for your presence, essentially as human shields. However, you need to protect the shield, yourselves, as well. We will not forget it.

“I think that we are making progress as we move, organizing, in my opinion, in new ways… It is very important to have mobility, and how we organize communications in such a manner to able to arrive immediately so that we can maximize the capabilities; our defense capabilities.

“We consider that even in national terms, not just urban – how to join our technology, which is much more advanced than what we see on the other side, to your real-time operational capabilities – police, Border Police, IDF soldiers – that are reinforcing you.

“I have no doubt that we can handle this wave. This involves not only action by you, but also your common sense, and the proposals that you bring from below rise up with tremendous speed. Each one of you, for me, is a source of innovation and a big start-up. But it will succeed, like all the things we did.

“We have stood before other waves of terrorism. We will overcome this wave as well. I have no doubt; but I would just like to thank you truly from the heart, from the hearts of the citizens of Israel, for the defense you are giving Israeli citizens.”

Hana Levi Julian

Netanyahu Tells Kerry PA Incitement Causing Terror Wave

Sunday, October 11th, 2015

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in a phone call on Saturday the Palestinian Authority government is behind the current wave of terror.

Netanyahu made the statement shortly after an Arab terrorist stabbed three Border Guard Police officers near the Damascus Gate entrance to the Old City of Jerusalem.

The prime minister said bluntly that the PA’s media incitement “was causing this wave of terrorism” and that it is incumbent upon the PA to put a stop to it.

In response, Kerry told Netanyahu that the Obama administration is aware that Israel – and the Netanyahu government – has no intention of changing the status quo in the holy places of Jerusalem.

That particular lie – that the Israeli government had intended to make changes to the status quo on the Temple Mount – was the lie used by Palestinian Authority officials and heads of terrorist organizations to light the match to ignite the current wave of violence.

Hana Levi Julian

City of Jerusalem & Parents’ Group Declare School Strike Over Inadequate Security

Wednesday, October 7th, 2015

The Jerusalem municipality joined the city parents’ association to declare a school strike Thursday for students in grades 9-12 to protest inadequate government security funding.

High schools throughout Jerusalem will be on strike as both the city and the parents demand the government pay for security measures that will protect schools throughout the school day.

Elementary schools are in session as usual.

“As long as the government is shirking its responsibility for school security, we will not abandon our children,” explained Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat in a statement released Wednesday night.

According to the statement, security for Jerusalem schools is funded only until 1:30 pm.

Security coverage at school is not funded after that time, and those communities who cannot afford to pay for it may simply have no coverage until the end of the school day.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/city-of-jerusalem-parents-group-declare-school-strike-over-inadequate-security/2015/10/07/

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