The Daily Brief – Today’s News And Views About Israel & The Mideast – April 2

April 2, 2017
  • The United Nations and human rights groups have accused Gaza’s Hamas rulers of endangering their own people by closing the territory’s main crossing with Israel, reports Metro News.
  • Israeli police say they have shot dead a Palestinian who stabbed three people in the old city of Jerusalem. Spokeswoman Luba Samri says the man stabbed two Jewish youths Saturday before fleeing, with police forces giving chase. He then stabbed one of the policemen before he was shot and killed. Samri says the victims suffered light to moderate injuries. Coverage at Metro News.
  • Also at Metro News: The founder of an anti-Israel boycott movement says the Israeli authorities’ investigation into his suspected tax evasion is based on “vicious lies.” Omar Barghouti, a Palestinian who holds Israeli residency, says Saturday he is not allowed to delve into details of his case because of a gag order. But he insists the probe is politically motivated.
  • At Now Magazine, Bernie Farber expounds on a Jew’s education on Canada’s residential schools atrocity: How a trip with Indigenous leaders to Yad Vashem, Israel’s museum of the Holocaust, was the beginning of my lesson on Canada’s own crime against humanity.
  • Israel’s security cabinet on Thursday approved the building of the first new settlement in the occupied West Bank in two decades, even as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu negotiates with Washington on a possible curb on settlement activity. See reports from the Globe and Mail, CBC and Hamilton Spectator.
  • The U.N.’s Palestinian relief agency says Syria’s Palestinian refugee population has fallen by one-fifth since the start of the Syrian conflict in 2011. See Metro News coverage.
  • Ubyssey reports that “Court petition fails, referendum on BDS to go forward next week”.
  • John Gleeson at Coast Reporter wrote a nice article about “The B.C. hate speech trial that nobody’s heard about”. He says:
    • “With Parliament’s anti-Islamophobia motion in the news recently and the country divided over the issue of freedom of speech as it applies to criticizing identifiable groups, it’s strikingly odd that a real live hate speech trial – the first in B.C. in about a decade – concluded this month with a controversial sentencing, yet barely a whisper from the media. CBC did report on the March 13 sentencing of Radical Press publisher Arthur Topham, who was convicted in Quesnel in 2015 on one of two counts of communicating statements that wilfully promoted hatred against Jewish people. Times of Israel also reported on the sentence, running a story under the headline, “No jail time for Canadian man convicted of online anti-Semitism.” And the Canadian Jewish News also ran a report: “Topham’s sentence a ‘slap on the wrist:’ B’nai Brith.”


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