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Israel’s Netanyahu Basically Tells UN to Pound Salt Over West Bank

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Israel's Netanyahu Tells the UN to Pond Salt Over West Bank

Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister, has basically told the United Nations General Assembly to pound salt over Israel’s occupation of the alleged Palestinian territories in the weat bank.

Palestinians welcomed a vote by the United Nations General Assembly on Saturday to request an opinion from the International Court of Justice on the legal implications of Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territories.

The UN vote poses a challenge to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who took office this week as head of a government that prioritizes settlement expansion and includes parties that want to annex the West Bank land on which they are built.

“The Jewish people are not occupiers in their own land, nor are they occupiers in our eternal capital Jerusalem, and no United Nations resolution can distort that historical truth,” Netanyahu said in a video message, adding that the “despicable decision would not bind Israel.”

The Palestinians seek a state in the occupied West Bank, along with Gaza and East Jerusalem. Most countries consider Israel’s settlements there to be illegal, but Israel disputes this, citing historical and Biblical ties to the land.
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The International Court of Justice (ICJ), based in The Hague and also known as the World Court, is the highest United Nations court dealing with international disputes. Its decisions are binding, but the ICJ has no authority to enforce them.

Netanyahu promised to bolster settlements

The United Nations General Assembly requested an advisory opinion from the International Court of Justice on the legal implications of Israel’s “occupation, settlement, and annexation… including measures aimed at altering the demographic composition, character, and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem.”

Members of Netanyahu’s new government have promised to bolster settlements with development plans, budgets, and the approval of dozens of illegal outposts.

The cabinet includes newly created posts and restructured roles that give some of those powers to pro-settler coalition partners, with the ultimate goal of extending Israeli sovereignty to the West Bank.

Netanyahu, on the other hand, has made no indication of any imminent plans to annex the settlements, a move that would likely sour relations with both Western and Arab allies.

The Palestinians welcomed the United Nations vote, in which 87 members voted in favor of adopting the request, while Israel, the United States, and 24 other members voted against it, and 53 abstained.

“The time has come for Israel to be a state subject to the rule of law and to be held accountable for its ongoing crimes against our people,” said Nabil Abu Rudeineh, spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ Palestinian Authority, which has limited self-rule in the West Bank.

According to Basem Naim, a Hamas official, it is “an important step toward confining and isolating the state of occupation (Israel).”

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Top Biden aide set to visit Israel

On Friday that US President Joe Biden said he intends to send National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan to Jerusalem next month for meetings with senior members of the new Israeli government.

The new Israeli government, which took office on Thursday, is the most right-wing in Israeli history, with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party signing coalition agreements that included pledges to expand Israeli settlements in the West Bank, legalize dozens of wildcat outposts, and pass legislation that would allow businesses to refuse service to certain customers based on their religious conscience.

In its agreement with the far-right Religious Zionism party, Likud also agreed in principle to annex large parts of the West Bank, but the agreement includes a clause giving Netanyahu an effective veto, which he is likely to maintain as he seeks a normalization deal with Saudi Arabia.

The coalition’s plans have caused concern in Washington,with the Biden administration being most concerned with preserving the prospects for a two-state solution by preventing further Israeli expansion in the West Bank.

The official stated that no dates have been set for Sullivan’s visit and that other details are still being worked out, but that he is expected to meet with Netanyahu, his National Security Council chairman Tzachi Hanegbi, and Strategic Affairs Minister Ron Dermer, whom the premier has reportedly appointed as his point man for relations with the Biden administration.

According to the Times of Isreal, Sullivan’s visit could pave the way for Netanyahu to visit Washington in February.

Biden fears Israel's far right cabinet

Biden fears Israel’s far right cabinet

Meanwhile, Biden congratulated Netanyahu on the formation of a government on Thursday, saying he looks forward to working with him to advance Israel’s regional integration, promote peace between Israel and the Palestinians, and address the threat posed by Iran.

“The United States will continue to support the two-state solution and oppose policies that jeopardize its viability or contradict our mutual interests and values,” Biden added, expressing a policy that will likely clash with the new West Bank government’s plans.

The Biden administration has not stated whether it will collaborate with some of Netanyahu’s most far-right cabinet members, including National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir, Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich, and Deputy Minister Avi Maoz.

Blinken warned Israel earlier this month against annexation, settlement expansion, and evictions of Palestinians, but added that Washington was willing to work with the new government and would judge it based on its policies, not its personalities.

Israel has cited several reasons for keeping the West Bank within its borders: a claim based on historic rights to this as a homeland as claimed in the Balfour Declaration of 1917; internal and external security concerns; and the area’s deep symbolic value for Jews.

Source: Reuters, Times of Isreal, VOR News

Geoff Thomas is a seasoned staff writer at VORNews, a reputable online publication. With his sharp writing skills and deep understanding of SEO, he consistently delivers high-quality, engaging content that resonates with readers. Thomas' articles are well-researched, informative, and written in a clear, concise style that keeps audiences hooked. His ability to craft compelling narratives while seamlessly incorporating relevant keywords has made him a valuable asset to the VORNews team.

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‘Run, Run, Run’: Chaos At A Sydney Mall As 6 People Stabbed To Death, And The Suspect Fatally Shot

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Sydney — A guy stabbed six people to death at a major Sydney shopping mall Saturday before being fatally shot, according to police, with hundreds fleeing the chaotic scene, many of whom were weeping while carrying their children. Eight individuals were hurt, including a nine-month-old.

The 40-year-old was stopped in the knife assault at the Westfield Shopping Centre in Bondi Junction, in the city’s eastern suburbs, by a police inspector who shot him after he turned and lifted a knife, according to New South Wales Assistant Police Commissioner Anthony Cooke.

sydney

‘Run, Run, Run’: Chaos At A Sydney Mall As 6 People Stabbed To Death, And The Suspect Fatally Shot

“They just said run, run, run—someone’s been stabbed,” one witness told ABC TV in Australia. “(The attacker) was walking casually, as if enjoying an ice cream in a park. And then he went up the escalators… and within about a minute, we heard three gunshots.

The suspect, as well as six of the victims (five women and one guy), died. Commissioner Karen Webb stated that the eight injured people were treated in hospitals. The infant was in surgery, but it was too early to determine his condition, she said.

“We are confident that there is no ongoing risk, and we are dealing with one person who is now deceased,” Webb said in a later briefing. She continued, “It’s not a terrorism incident.”

She stated that authorities would not name the individual yet and were still investigating his motivation.

Cooke stated that a “lengthy and precise” examination had barely begun.

Some observers were astounded by the unusual surge of violence. In 1996, a man killed 35 people and wounded 23 others in Tasmania, prompting Australia to pass tough gun prohibitions.

sydney

‘Run, Run, Run’: Chaos At A Sydney Mall As 6 People Stabbed To Death, And The Suspect Fatally Shot

Cooke stated that the police inspector, a senior officer, addressed the suspect alone and engaged him shortly after arriving on the scene, “saving a range of people’s lives.”

The cop “displayed enormous courage and bravery,” Webb stated.

“If she didn’t shoot, he would have kept going, and I don’t know how many more he would have done,” another witness told 7News of the police inspector.

Many ambulances and police cars were seen near the shopping complex, and individuals were flowing out, many carrying youngsters.

Paramedics were treating victims on the spot.

Roi Huberman, a sound engineer at ABC TV in Australia, told the network that he took shelter in a store during the event.

“And suddenly we heard a shot or maybe two shots, and we didn’t know what to do,” he recalled. Then, the highly capable person at the store led us to the back, where it could be locked. She then shut the store, let us through the back, and we’re now out.”

sydney

‘Run, Run, Run’: Chaos At A Sydney Mall As 6 People Stabbed To Death, And The Suspect Fatally Shot

The most senior members of the British royal family, who are also Australian royals, voiced shock and sadness following the stabbings.

King Charles III and his wife Queen Camilla were “utterly shocked and horrified” by the “senseless attack” in Sydney and expressed their “hearts go out to the families and loved ones of those who have been so brutally killed.” The king’s eldest son, Prince William, and his wife, Catherine, Princess of Wales, said they were also “shocked and saddened” and their sympathies with those impacted and the “heroic emergency responders who risked their own lives to save others.”

SOURCE – (AP)

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Germans Celebrate As Recreational Cannabis Use Becomes Legal

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Crowds gathered in Germany overnight to celebrate the legalization of cannabis, which begins on Monday.

There was music and dancing at the Brandenburg Gate in central Berlin as many waved placards and blew smoke into the air.

germany cannabis

Germans Celebrate As Recreational Cannabis Use Becomes Legal

One guy was seen cycling through the crowd, carrying a big cannabis leaf artwork on a trailer behind their bike, while another ceremoniously rolled a joint in front of news cameras.

Following a contentious national discussion about the benefits and drawbacks of making cannabis more accessible, Germany’s lower house of parliament decided last month to legalize it for restricted recreational use.

Karl Lauterbach, the health minister, praised the move in an X post on Monday.

“Weed use was already present yesterday, but it is increasing. “Now it’s out of the taboo zone,” he wrote.

“This is better for real addiction help, prevention for children and young people and for combating the black market, for which there will soon be an alternative.”

The new restrictions allow adults to carry tiny amounts for personal use, but the substance remains illegal for people under 18.

cannabis

Germans Celebrate As Recreational Cannabis Use Becomes Legal

Under new regulations proposed by Germany’s ruling coalition party, adults can cultivate up to three plants for private use. Beginning April 1, the limit is 50g at home and 25g in public.

From July 1, cannabis will be offered in approved not-for-profit clubs with no more than 500 members, all of whom must be adults. Only club members would be able to consume their output.

The German government stated that cannabis would remain illegal for kids and severely restricted for young adults and that consuming the substance near schools and playgrounds would be prohibited.

Germany becomes the third country in Europe to legalize cannabis for recreational use, following Malta and Luxembourg, and removes it from the official list of illegal narcotics.

cannabis

Germans Celebrate As Recreational Cannabis Use Becomes Legal

The Netherlands prohibits drug possession, but some towns allow them to be sold at coffee shops as part of its so-called toleration policy.

Other countries, such as Australia and the United States, have differing local restrictions.

SOURCE – (CNN)

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Iranian Official Warns Israel That Its Embassies Are Not Safe After Deadly Damascus Strike

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JERUSALEM — A top Iranian military adviser warned Israel on Sunday that none of its embassies were secure following last week’s strike in Damascus, which killed two elite Iranian generals. As Israel’s battle against Hamas enters its sixth month, regional tensions threaten to plunge the Middle East into a larger confrontation.

The statements of Gen. Rahim Safavi, a military adviser to Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, suggested that the attack on a diplomatic mission would be met with a similar response. They have not explicitly admitted its involvement.

“None of the (Israeli) regime’s embassies are safe anymore,” Safavi told the semi-official Tasnim news agency. He spoke at a ceremony in Tehran honoring the generals slain in the strike that destroyed an Iranian consulate building.

israel

Iranian Official Warns Israel That Its Embassies Are Not Safe After Deadly Damascus Strike

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated that the country was prepared for any response. “Whoever harms us or plans to harm us, we will harm them,” he warned a Cabinet gathering.

The regional tensions erupted six months into the war, which began when Hamas-led militants infiltrated from Gaza into the country, killing 1,200 people, the majority of whom were civilians, and kidnapping approximately 250 others. They replied with a severe bombardment and ground offensive that killed over 33,000 Palestinians, most of whom were women and children, according to local health authorities.

Also on Sunday, the military stated that it was withdrawing forces from the 98th Paratroopers Division, which had been operating in the Khan Younis area of southern Gaza, lowering Israeli troop levels in Gaza to some of their lowest since the conflict began. The Hamas stronghold has been the primary target of Israel’s offensive in recent months.

The forces retreated to rest and prepare for future operations, but a considerable number remain in Gaza, according to military sources who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media.

The country keeps troops in damaged northern Gaza and can send them south as needed. Israel has declared a ground offensive against Rafah, the southernmost Gaza city and Hamas’ last stronghold. However, the area houses around 1.4 million people, representing more than half of Gaza’s population. The threat of an offensive has sparked global concern, particularly from key partners, the United States, which has demanded a credible strategy to protect civilians.

The six-month mark of the war has been met with growing discontent in Israel, where anti-government protests have erupted, and resentment is rising over what some Israelis regard as the government’s failure to assist in rescuing the remaining around 130 hostages, about a fifth of whom claims are dead.

Negotiations for a cease-fire in exchange for the hostages’ release will likely restart in Cairo on Sunday. An Israeli delegation led by the head of the Mossad intelligence agency was scheduled to leave for Cairo, according to an Israeli official who spoke anonymously because they were not authorized to discuss the topic with the press.

israel Damascus

Iranian Official Warns Israel That Its Embassies Are Not Safe After Deadly Damascus Strike

“Israel is prepared for a deal; Israel is not prepared to surrender,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated. “Instead of the international pressure being directed at Israel, which is only causing Hamas to harden its positions, the pressure of the international community needs to be directed at Hamas.”

The pressure to act has increased.

“This does not appear to be a war against terrorism. This no longer appears to be a war fought to defend Israel. Chef Jose Andres told ABC that this appears to be a battle on humanity itself, just days after an Israeli bombardment murdered seven of his World Central Kitchen colleagues in Gaza. Aid deliveries along a critical new sea route to the area were halted.

The United Nations and its allies have warned of “imminent famine” for more than 1 million people in Gaza, as humanitarian workers ask the country to ease restrictions on assistance delivery overland, the only option to meet rising demands as some Palestinians scavenge for weeds to eat.

Mothers who have given birth in Gaza since the conflict started are particularly susceptible.

According to the Gaza Health Ministry, the bodies of 38 persons killed in Israel’s shelling have been transferred to the territory’s remaining functional hospitals during the last 24 hours. According to reports, 71 people were injured and sent to hospitals.

isarel

Iranian Official Warns Israel That Its Embassies Are Not Safe After Deadly Damascus Strike

The ministry reported that 33,175 people had been murdered since the war began. The ministry does not distinguish between civilians and combatants but claims two-thirds of those killed are children and women. A further 75,886 people have been wounded.

Israel’s military continues to suffer fatalities, particularly in Khan Younis, where four troops were killed in combat with extremists.

According to Israel’s administration, more than 600 Israeli soldiers have been killed since October 7, with 260 killed in the Gaza ground operation.

source – ap

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