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>Israel Faxx
>JN July 12, 1999, Vol. 7, No. 125

First Lady Supports Israel's Claim to Jerusalem

By IsraelWire

As she continues her bid for the New York State Senate seat, First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton has taken a new position on Israel's right to Jerusalem as its "eternal and indivisible capital of Israel". Clinton made the statement in a letter to Mandell Ganchrow, president of the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America.

Arafat, Barak Pledge Cooperation

By Meredith Buel (VOA-Jerusalem)

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak and Palestinian Chairman Yasir Arafat are pledging to move the Middle East peace process forward and work to find peaceful solutions to the differences that separate them. They met Sunday on the border of the Gaza Strip,

Barak says the Israelis and Palestinians are now embarking on a new road of trust to give a new momentum to efforts to bring peace to the region. "Both sides have suffered enough. It is about time to find the way to nurture mutual respect -- a kind of partnership and to make peace together. I am confident that with trust and determination and some good will on all sides we can and we have to achieve peace in the Middle East."

Arafat called Barak his friend and partner in the peace process. Speaking through a translator, Arafat called for a new era of peace in the Middle East. "It is time to put an end to the cycle of violence and confrontation. It is time for the new dawn. The dawn of peace, security and cooperation for all and between all people of the region."

Arafat reiterated Palestinian demands for rapid implementation of the Wye River Peace Accords, which require a partial handover of the West Bank to the Palestinians. He also demanded a halt to construction of Jewish settlements on the West Bank.

Barak says his government will not establish any new settlements, but will not dismantle existing settlements in the territories. He says he hopes Arafat will agree to find a way to combine interim peace accords with final status talks on such thorny issues as a Palestinian state and the future of Jerusalem.

"I have no illusions and I believe that the chairman has no illusions that we are going into tough and a long negotiation with many ups and downs and crises. But I believe with the kind of determination and conviction and commitment that I believe we all have here we will be able to overcome these obstacles and reach the common goal of achieving peace and putting an end to the 100 years of conflict in the Middle East."

Parents Marriage Annulled so Daughter Wouldn't Be a Bastard

By IsraelWire

The Safed Rabbinical Court annulled the marriage of a couple following 40 years of living with one-another as a couple. The wedding, which took place in Morocco, was annulled to permit the couple's daughter to wed, despite her being classified as a "Mamzer" (bastard) in accordance with Jewish law.

Several weeks ago, a woman in her 30s came to the Safed Rabbinate requesting to begin proceedings to permit her to wed. A standard check of the woman indicated she was classified as a bastard since she was conceived as a result of a romance between her mother and another man. Jewish law prohibits her from marrying anyone except another bastard or a convert.

A more in-depth investigation by the court's chief justice, Rabbi Avraham Auerbach, led him to learn that the witnesses used in the wedding ceremony in Morocco 40 years ago were not "kosher" according to Jewish law, permitting the marriage to be annulled. The annulment removed the classification of bastard from the daughter since her mother was not married when she became pregnant, permitting the daughter to wed.

Cancer-Ridden Boy Falls to Death

By IsraelWire

Yaakov Segev, 14, who has been fighting cancer for three years, fell while climbing steps on crutches, and died. Segev was scheduled to undergo a bone-marrow transplant this week.

Last Thursday, Segev and his mother went shopping in the Beersheva Supercenter. Segev, on crutches, was climbing the stairs to the second floor, when he fell, hit his head, and was fatally hurt. The Segev family claims the ambulance called took a long time to arrive. Upon arriving in Soroka Hospital, Yaakov was pronounced brain dead.

McDonald's Guilty of Employing Youths on Sabbath

By IsraelWire

The Haifa District Labor Court reached a precedent-setting decision. The Aloniel Co., which operates the Israeli branches of McDonald's, and its director-general, Omri Padan, were found guilty of employing Jewish youths on the Sabbath -- illegal according to laws governing youth employment, which say. a Jewish youth is not allowed to work on Saturday, the Jewish Sabbath. Non-Jewish youth are allowed to choose between Friday, Saturday and Sunday for their weekly day off.

Padan called the law anachronistic and racist, and said that it served the interests of religious coercion.

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