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Teenage girl’s face slashed in Paris suburb, anti-Semitism suspected

Teenage girl’s face slashed in Paris suburb, anti-Semitism suspected

Adina Katz


 

An unknown assailant slashed the face of a 15-year-old girl wearing a Jewish school uniform in Sarcelles.
In what French lawmaker Francois Pupponi called “a heinous anti-Semitic attack,” an unknown assailant slashed the face of a 15-year-old Jewish girl in the northern Paris suburb of Sarcelles.

As reported by the Jewish Telegraphic Service (JTA), the attack occurred as the victim was walking home from school on Wednesday, wearing the uniform of her private Jewish school. Her mother told French daily Le Parisien that the girl arrived home bleeding and “shocked.”

(AP/Vadim Ghirda/Illustrative)

The victim said she did not see her attacker’s face, explaining that he ran away immediately after the assault.

“I have no doubt the perpetrators of this attack had anti-Semitic motives,” Pupponi wrote in a statement Friday, JTA reported.

“Faced with these acts, we need to abandon pretense and naiveté,” he added. “In Sarcelles, everybody knows who is a practicing Jew according to the way they dress. Delinquents know it too. When someone slashes a young girl’s face with a utility knife, when she is wearing clothes favored by many women from the Jewish community, then there is no room for doubt.”

The day before the assault on the girl, a kosher grocery market in Creteil, a Paris suburb, was vandalized and torched. The latest in a string of attacks against Jews in France, it included anti-Semitic graffiti and was carried out exactly three years after a deadly Islamic terror attack at the Hyper Cacher market in the French capital, which left four Jews dead.

Albert Elharrar, president of the Creteil Jewish community, said Jewish groups believe the shops were deliberately targeted at the time of commemorations for the 2015 attacks.

“There’s a link between the graffiti and the fire,” he told AFP. “It’s clear that they came for no other reason but to attack a kosher shop on the day of the commemorations.”

French Jews, who constitute the largest Jewish community outside of Israel and the United States, continue to leave France, mainly for Israel. Since 2006, 40,000 French Jews have left the Republic.


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US denies freezing millions in aid to Palestinian refugee agency

US denies freezing millions in aid to Palestinian refugee agency

ERIC CORTELLESSA
and TOI STAFF


Decision on slashing funds to UNRWA ‘under review,’ says State Department official; White House rebuffs report of missed January 1 deadline

Palestinians receive their monthly food aid at a UN distribution center in the Rafah refugee camp in the southern Gaza Strip in November 2012 (Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash 90)

WASHINGTON — Senior US officials on Friday denied reports that $125 million in aid to the UN’s Palestinian refugee agency had been frozen over Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s refusal to enter US-led peace talks with Israel.

“Contrary to reports that we have halted funding to UNRWA, the decision is under review,” a State Department official told The Times of Israel. “There are still deliberations taking place, and we have missed no deadline.”

Earlier on Friday, Channel 10 news reported that the $125 million in US funding should have been transferred to UNRWA by January 1, but was being held up because the White House is furious over the Palestinians’ reaction to President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital last month.

The TV report said that while the initial $125 million payment had been frozen, the administration was actually considering cutting altogether a total of some $180 million from its UNRWA payments — about half of the annual budget. It said a meeting on the issue took place at the White House on Friday, and that no final decision had been taken.

A White House official also responded to the TV report on Friday, confirming to The Times of Israel that no decision had been taken on the issue.

“There is no existing schedule that obligates the United States to provide specific amounts of aid to UNWRA on specific dates,” the statement said. “The decisions of when to provide aid in the fiscal year, and in what allocations, lie with the Secretary of State.”

“At this time, no such decisions have been made,” the official said.

US President Donald Trump speaking about his administration’s National Security Strategy at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, DC, December 18, 2017. (SAUL LOEB/AFP)

Relations between Trump’s White House and the Palestinians have been tense since Trump’s December 6 announcement recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

The declaration led Abbas to break off all contact with the Trump administration, and he has refused to meet with US officials regarding the peace process, including envoy Jason Greenblatt and Vice President Mike Pence.

On Tuesday, Trump threatened to cut off aid to the PA, asking why Washington should make “any of these massive future payments” when the Palestinians were “no longer willing to talk peace.”

The Palestinians rely heavily on international aid, with many analysts, including Israelis, saying such assistance helps maintain stability in a volatile region.

“We pay the Palestinians HUNDRED OF MILLIONS OF DOLLARS a year and get no appreciation or respect,” Trump tweeted. “They don’t even want to negotiate a long overdue peace treaty with Israel. We have taken Jerusalem, the toughest part of the negotiation, off the table, but Israel, for that, would have had to pay more.”

It was not immediately clear whether Trump was threatening all of the budget, worth $319 million in 2016, according to US government figures.

Illustrative: Palestinian girls at a UNRWA school in Gaza. (Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90)

While Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has yet to publicly address the reports about possible slashed American funding to UNRWA, Channel 10 reported Thursday that he is privately urging the US not to go through with the cuts.

The report said Netanyahu would publicly back the move, amid pressure from right-wing lawmakers such as Jewish Home leader Naftali Bennett, and in order not to undermine Trump.

But the Axios news site reported that Netanyahu has been in contact with the White House regarding UNRWA funding and that Israel prefers a “gradual disengagement” from the refugee agency.

In response to the report, the Prime Minister’s Office said: “Netanyahu supports President Trump’s critical attitude towards UNRWA and believes practical steps need to be taken in order to change the fact that UNRWA is being used to entrench the Palestinian refugee problem instead of solving it.”

An Israeli security source also told Channel 10 the funding cuts to UNRWA would make an already tense situation in Gaza “much worse.”


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GAL GADOT IN LEBANESE DESIGNER SPARKS BACKLASH

GAL GADOT IN LEBANESE DESIGNER SPARKS BACKLASH

AMY SPIRO


Elie Saab deletes Instagram post touting Israeli actress’s look after complaints.

Gal Gadot at the National Board of Review awards gala in New York, US, January 9, 2018. . (photo credit: LUCAS JACKSON / REUTERS)

Israeli actress Gal Gadot wore an Elie Saab designer gown to accept an award from the National Board of Review in New York on Tuesday night, but there was a problem: Saab is a famed Lebanese fashion designer, and not all his fans were happy with the choice.

Gadot wore the one-shoulder blue dress with a thigh-high slit to collect the organization’s Spotlight award alongside Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins.

    gal_gadot Verified gal_gadot

Thank you @nbrfilm for the wonderful night and for honoring Patty and I with the Spotlight Award. #WonderWoman

The Instagram page for Saab’s brand posted a photo of Gadot in the gown on Wednesday, calling her “flawless.” But screenshots of the now-deleted post show that many of the designer’s fans were not happy with him.

Lebanese TV producer Farah Shami wrote on Twitter that she doesn’t “have a problem with her wearing @ElieSaabWorld but I do have a problem with posting her picture from Elie Saab’s account and bragging about an ex Israeli soldier wearing his dress! Don’t ruin one the few things that make us proud Lebanese people! Elie Saab makes us proud.”

Lebanese Journalist Heba Bitar wrote in Arabic that she loves Saab, but wondered, “Why does it mean so much that an Israeli actress wore a dress from him?” After the post was deleted, she added that his team “was smart enough to remove the post when people started commenting. Anyway they should be more cautious.”

While Saab’s account pulled the photo, it didn’t offer any explanation or apology for doing so. Gadot’s Instagram post from the awards ceremony didn’t mention the designer. Saab did not immediately respond to a request for comment.


Gal Gadot in New York at the National Board of Review 2018 (Daily Mail)

When Wonder Woman – the smash superhero hit of the summer – was released, Lebanon moved to ban the film since Gadot is an IDF veteran. Lebanon also bans its citizens from entering Israel.


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‘Murdering Jews is the most lucrative profession’

‘Murdering Jews is the most lucrative profession’

Lital Shemesh


Journalist Lital Shemesh explains why the terrorist who murdered three members of the Salomon family is smiling in court. Opinion.

Terrorist Omar al-Abed, responsible for slaughter in Halamish (Neve Tzuf)Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

The Ofer military court on Friday morning began hearing the defense and prosecution’s views on sentencing the terrorist who killed three members of the Salomon family in July.

The military prosecution demands 19-year-old Omar al-Abed be sentenced to three life sentences for the murders and a fourth life sentence for attempting to murder the rest of the family.

Photos of the al-Abed in court show him smiling widely, possibly because he knows that for every month he sits in prison, he and his family will receive dozens of thousands of shekels in monthly payments from the Palestinian Authority (PA).

In addition, al-Abed is aware of the fact that as he sits in prison, his colleagues are planning ways to release him.

Potential terrorists know that today, the most lucrative occupation in the PA is killing Jews.

The more Jews you kill, the more money you’ll receive. Whether or not the bill to sentence terrorists to death becomes law, the Israeli government must understand that the PA’s incentives and indulgences, as well as the terrorists’ families’ visits, must cease.

Al-Abed was convicted on Wednesday of three counts of murder, two counts of attempted murder, and incitement.


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