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>Israel Faxx
>JN July 24, 1998, Vol. 6, No. 131

Israel Will Do Whatever is Necessary to Defend Itself

By Al Pessin (VOA-Jerusalem)

Israel has expressed concern about Iran's missile test and called for international action to stop the country's missile development program.

The first report of the Iranian missile test came in the New York Times which also speculated that Israel might try to destroy Iran's missile capability before it becomes operational.

On Thursday, Israeli Defense Minister Yitzhak Mordechai said only that Israel will do what is necessary to defend itself, but he would not elaborate.

Israel has been warning of the dangers of Iran's missile program for nearly two years, and has been working with the United States and other countries to stop the flow of technology into the program from China, Russia and North Korea. Israeli Trade and Industry Minister Natan Sharansky says more international action is needed -- and immediately.

"This launch, even though it looks not very successful, shows Iran can have such a type of a missile and that the efforts which we are encouraging -- united efforts of the United States of America and Russia and other countries -- to stop the leaking of the technologies to Iran, should be strengthened. And we have to take immediate measures to prevent it."

Israel is at the outer edge of the 812 mile range of the missile Iran tested Wednesday. Experts say the missile is not very accurate at such a distance. Israeli officials say the main concern is what type of warhead Iran would put on such a missile. There are many missiles in the region armed with conventional warheads. But, Israeli officials say, if Iran put a non-conventional warhead on such a missile, it would be a major threat.

Present and former intelligence officials said the missile came from North Korea, which has vowed to continue selling its weapons to any nation that can provide that cash-starved regime with hard currency. The official North Korean news agency issued a statement last month saying that "our missile export is aimed at obtaining foreign money we need at present."

Arab League: Inspect Israel's Nuclear Installations

By IsraelWire

The Jordan Times reports that the Arab League adopted a resolution urging the international community to stop providing Israel with material for its nuclear program until it allows inspection of its installations.

The resolution will be submitted in September to the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna. "We urge all the countries to stop supplying Israel material, equipment or assistance until its opens all its nuclear installations to IAEA control."

Woman Reported Dead by Government Computer

By IsraelWire

Saleh Melamed, of Meitar in southern Israel, has had a most difficult time, after the Ministry of the Interior computer listed her as dead. Since that time, Saleh has been unable to obtain a drivers license, retain medical coverage or replace her outdated gas mask, since she is listed as deceased in all government computers.

Her husband explained that when she attempts to reenter the country from abroad, it is a nightmare as well. Now, he adds, she is in Finland and he hopes her return will be uneventful, since the ministry insists the problem has been corrected. "I think at the very least, someone should send her a bouquet of flowers and an apology for all the suffering she has endured," added her husband.

Two Teachers Suspected of Drug Use at 1st Grade Party

By IsraelWire

Two art teachers of a prestigious Gush Dan school, are suspected of illegal use of drugs during an end of year party for first graders. In addition, one of them is accused by parents of indecent behavior during the school year.

One of the teachers told police that during the school year, he would regularly drink alcoholic beverages while teaching in order to "warm up."

According to some of the parents who attended the party for the first graders, which was held at a swimming pool, one of the teachers was intentionally rubbing her body up against those of some of the children, in addition to smoking pot.

The male teacher admitted to police that he and the female teacher did indeed smoke marijuana at the party. This was later denied by the female teacher.

In addition, parents told police that the male teacher also was guilty of committing indecent acts with some of the first graders during the course of the year.

Arad Municipality Moves to Get Rid of Cats

By IsraelWire

The Arad Municipality is taking action to reduce the number of stray cats in the city. Following two confirmed cases of rabies in the city, officials fear cats may also be infected and they have decided to poison the strays. Human society officials accuse the municipality of panicking and condemn the planned actions.

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