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>JN April 5, 2001, Vol. 9, No. 62
Shalom Approves Sellout to Arabs
By Arutz-7 News
Finance Minister Silvan Shalom signed a document authorizing the
Chief Rabbis of Israel to sell the country's "chametz" leavened
products to a non-Jewish resident of the Arab town of Abu Ghosh,
west of Jerusalem.
Shalom said at the ceremony that in previous years, he has just
been responsible for burning his personal "chametz," and never
thought that he would be a main participant in a ceremony selling
the national chametz on the eve of Passover.
Israelis, Palestinians Meet in Athens
By Ross Dunn (VOA-Jerusalem)
Israeli troops and Palestinian militants exchanged mortar fire in
the Gaza Strip, while the two sides held high-level political talks
After a day of violence in the Gaza Strip, top Israeli and
Palestinian officials held their highest-level political meeting
since the election of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in February.
Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres met with Palestinian
Planning Minister Nabil Shaath and negotiator Saeb Erekat in
Israel Radio reports a meeting is being planned between Israeli and
Palestinian security chiefs, with U.S. Government representatives
as mediators. The radio said Secretary of State Colin Powell
arranged the talks following telephone conversations with Sharon
and Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat.
Meanwhile, more clashes occurred in the Gaza Strip, with Israeli
security forces shelling Palestinian militants, who had fired
mortars on a Jewish settlement. A spokesman for the Israeli Defense
Forces says it is the first time since the conflict began last
September that it has used mortars.
Dozens of Jewish settlers held a protest in the Gaza Strip, a day
after the Palestinian mortar fire critically injured a one-year-old
boy and wounded his mother. Israel retaliated with helicopter gun
ships, injuring 70 residents of the Gaza Strip.
Israelis Quietly Meet with Arafat
By VOA News
While Israeli and Palestinian officials resumed public contacts in
Athens on Wednesday, a few Israelis have also been holding quiet
meetings with Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat.
Wednesday, three left-wing members of the Israeli parliament met
with Arafat in the Palestinian-controlled West Bank town of
Ramallah. The three lawmakers - two from the Meretz Party, one from
Labor - delivered a message to the Palestinian leader from Israeli
Defense Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer. The contents of the message
were not revealed.
Also, the office of Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon confirmed
reports that the prime minister's son, Omri Sharon, met with Arafat
on Sunday, also in Ramallah. No details on the meeting were
Israelis, Palestinians To Meet Wednesday Night
By VOA News
Israeli and Palestinian security officials will meet Wednesday
night for hastily-scheduled talks at the home of U.S. Ambassador
Martin Indyk near Tel Aviv. Israeli officials say the meeting's
purpose is to find a way to end to the violence that has rocked the
region since last September.
But Palestinian minister Saeb Erakat says the Palestinians are
seeking the implementation of past agreements that have yet to be
carried out, particularly the understandings the parties reached at
the Egyptian resort of Sharm el-Sheik last October.
U.S. officials say the United States will be represented at the
meetings but will play a limited role and that U.S. policy still
holds that the parties should discuss issues directly without
Palestinians Say Violence is Result of Occupation
By VOA News
In their final report to a commission examining the cause of
Israeli-Palestinian violence, Palestinian leaders have said their
people's uprising is a response to Israeli occupation.
The Palestinian report, released Wednesday, says the violence would
end only when the Israelis ceased settlement activity in the areas
Israel captured in the 1967 war.
The five-person fact-finding committee, led by former U.S. Sen.
George Mitchell, visited the West Bank, Gaza Strip and Israel and
listened to testimony from both Israelis and Palestinians. The
commission is expected to release its own report on the causes of
the violence sometime in the next couple of months
A Persimmon a Day...
By Arutz-7 News
Dr. Shela Gorinstein, a researcher at the Hebrew University School
of Pharmacy, joined researchers from Poland, Bulgaria and Spain in
comparing the health benefits of apples to those of persimmons.
The scholars found that persimmons play a more significant role
than apples in reducing the risk of heart disease, the number one
cause of death in the West, as well as strokes.
Specifically, the researchers found that, as compared to apples,
persimmons contain a significantly higher concentration of dietary
fiber, minerals, polyphenols (anti-oxidants) and trace elements -
all of which play a role in combating the clogging of arteries.
Previous research by the same group showed that persimmons improved
the metabolism of lipids (fats) in rats. The results of the latest
study were published in a recent issue of The Journal of
Agricultural and Food Chemistry, published by the American Chemical
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