Reprinted from Honest Reporting.
A source close to Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has denied there is a “diplomatic process” with the Palestinians following a meeting between Defense Minister Benny Gantz and PA President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah.
It is believed to be the first tete-a-tete between Abbas and an Israeli minister in over a decade.
“This is a meeting that dealt with joint, everyday issues between the security establishment and the Palestinian Authority,” the Israeli source said, adding that Bennett had approved the move in advance.
“There is no diplomatic process with the Palestinians, nor will there be,” the official qualified.
Gantz himself tweeted at just after midnight on Monday to say that economic issues were the primary talking point.
Bennett has previously insisted there are no plans for Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations and that he does not support a two-state solution.
This evening I met with PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas to discuss security-policy, civilian and economic issues. I told Chairman Abbas that Israel seeks to take measures that will strengthen the PA’s economy.
— בני גנץ – Benny Gantz (@gantzbe) August 29, 2021
Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi has appointed a United Nations-sanctioned minister to lead the country’s nuclear program.
Mohammad Eslami, a 64-year-old civil engineer with links to the Iran’s defense ministry, is replacing United States-educated scientist Ali Akbar, who was a key voice in the negotiations that led to the 2015 nuclear deal.
Eslami was blacklisted by the UN in 2008 for “being engaged in, directly associated with or providing support for Iran’s proliferation of sensitive nuclear activities or for the development of nuclear weapon delivery systems” while serving as head of the Islamic Republic’s Defense Industries Training and Research Institute.
His selection comes as Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett used a White House meeting with President Joe Biden to commit to refrain from publicly campaigning against the US rejoining the 2015 pact that placed restrictions on Tehran’s nuclear capabilities.
Bennett has previously warned against reviving the accord from which former president Donald Trump withdrew Washington in 2018, citing Iran’s increased uranium enrichment, ballistic missile program and regional interventionism.
Israel is reportedly considering assisting Afghan refugees who have fled the country following the Taliban’s takeover and as the US completes its military withdrawal this month.
Prime Minister Naftali Bennett is said to be considering plans to help the United States transport and resettle them in a currently unidentified location.
It follows reports the Jewish state would absorb a “symbolic” number of Afghan refugees as a “humanitarian gesture,” although this is now thought to be highly unlikely.
The United Nations has warned of a “worst-case scenario” in which more than half a million Afghans will flee their nation by the end of this year.
Israel’s Nature and Parks Authority is hunting a crocodile that is on the loose along the shared border with Jordan.
The Israel Defense Forces was warned by the Jordanian military that the reptile had been spotted in the Yarmouk River, which is the largest tributary of the Jordan River, and it could now be somewhere between Sha’ar HaGolan and the Masada kibbutz in the north.
However, the crocodile, which is no longer a native species in Israel, is not thought to pose a risk to people as it was spotted in a section of water that is on the other side of the border fence.
The Parks Authority said in a statement that it is attempting to get permission for a team to cross the frontier in order to conduct a search for the animal.
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- Woke History Hits Middle East as Palestinians Accused of Erasing History (Ben Evansky, Fox News)
- Tarantino: Hollywood Snubbed ’80s Israeli Directors ‘in an Antisemitic Way’ (Jessica Steinberg, Times of Israel)
- The Tech Startup Where Most Employees Are on the Autism Spectrum (Abigail Klein Leichman, Israel21C)
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