Jeffrey's Feed
Oct 29, 2014

Israel’s Netanyahu fumes at reported U.S. slur

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – (This story contains strong language)

An anonymous U.S. official’s reported description of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a “chickenshit”, or worthless coward, drew a sharp response on Wednesday from the Israeli leader – no stranger to acrimony with the Obama administration.

The American broadside, in an interview in The Atlantic magazine, followed a month of heated exchanges between the Netanyahu government and Washington over settlement building in Israeli-annexed East Jerusalem, which Palestinians seek as the capital of a future state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Oct 27, 2014

Netanyahu to expedite plans for 1,000 new settler homes

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will expedite planning for some 1,000 settler homes in East Jerusalem, a government official said on Monday, in a bid to placate a restive coalition ally without further aggravating a dispute with Washington.

The ultra-nationalist Jewish Home party, led by Economy Minister Naftali Bennett, has been issuing veiled threats to sever its political partnership with Netanyahu unless he agrees to its call for 2,000 new building tenders in settlements in the occupied West Bank.

Sep 24, 2014

Israel says Iran used Parchin military site for testing nuclear detonation technology

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israel said on Wednesday that Iran has used its Parchin military base as the site for secret tests of technology that could be used only for detonating a nuclear weapon.

The Jewish state has been a severe critic of six big powers’ negotiations with Iran on restraining its nuclear program, suspecting Tehran is only trying to buy time to master sensitive nuclear know-how and would evade the terms of any final deal.

Sep 16, 2014

U.N. says Palestinians, Israelis reach deal on Gaza reconstruction

UNITED NATIONS/JERUSALEM (Reuters) – The United Nations, Israel and the Palestinian Authority have reached a stop-gap deal to allow reconstruction work to begin in the war-torn Gaza Strip with U.N. monitoring of the use of materials, U.N. Middle East envoy Robert Serry said on Tuesday.

The agreement, announced to the Security Council, could help curb Palestinian economic deterioration and shore up U.S.-backed President Mahmoud Abbas’s standing in Gaza, which since 2007 has been controlled by Hamas Islamists shunned by the West.

Sep 16, 2014

Gaza war to reverse years of growth in Palestinian economy: World Bank

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – War in Gaza will contribute to a reversal of seven years of growth in the Palestinian economy, now expected to shrink by nearly four percent this year, the World Bank said in a report on Tuesday.

The Gaza Strip – run by the Hamas Islamist group that is shunned by the West – will see contraction of as much as 15 percent, while a slight recovery in the fourth quarter could push West Bank growth to about 0.5 percent, the World Bank said.

Sep 2, 2014

End of Gaza war doesn’t translate into peace

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – A week after the guns fell silent in the Gaza war, Israel and the Palestinians seem to have little appetite or incentive for a return to U.S.-sponsored peace and statehood talks that collapsed five months ago.

With conflicts raging in Ukraine, Iraq and Syria – and the future of the Gaza Strip largely uncharted by a broadbrush Egyptian-mediated ceasefire deal – world powers also are not rushing headlong into the Israeli-Palestinian stalemate.

Aug 31, 2014

Israel claims West Bank land for possible settlement use, draws U.S. rebuke

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israel announced on Sunday a land appropriation in the occupied West Bank that an anti-settlement group termed the biggest in 30 years, drawing Palestinian condemnation and a U.S. rebuke.

Some 400 hectares (988 acres) in the Etzion Jewish settlement bloc near Bethlehem were declared “state land, on the instructions of the political echelon” by the military-run Civil Administration.

Aug 28, 2014

Gaza truce holding but Israel’s Netanyahu under fire at home

GAZA/JERUSALEM (Reuters) – An open-ended ceasefire in the Gaza war held on Wednesday as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu faced strong criticism in Israel over a costly conflict with Palestinian militants in which no clear victor has emerged.

On the streets of the battered, Hamas-run Palestinian enclave, people headed to shops and banks, trying to resume the normal pace of life after seven weeks of fighting. Thousands of others, who had fled the battles and sheltered with relatives or in schools, returned home, where some found only rubble.

Aug 27, 2014

Gaza ceasefire holding as focus turns to longer term

GAZA/JERUSALEM (Reuters) – An open-ended ceasefire in the Gaza war between Israel and the Palestinians held on Wednesday as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu faced strong criticism in his country’s newspapers over a campaign in which no clear victor emerged.

On the streets of the battered, Hamas-run Palestinian enclave, people headed to shops and banks, trying to resume the normal pace of life after seven weeks of fighting.

Aug 26, 2014

Israeli air strikes target more Gaza high-rises

GAZA/JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israel bombed more of Gaza’s tallest structures on Tuesday, bringing down a 13-storey apartment and office tower and destroying most of a 16-floor residential building after warning occupants to get out.

The Israeli military, declining to comment specifically on the attacks that flattened the Basha Tower and wrecked the Italian Complex, said it attacked 15 “terror sites”, including some in buildings that housed Hamas command and control centers.

    • About Jeffrey

      "Heller joined Reuters from United Press International in Tel Aviv in 1984 and transferred to London in 1987. He returned to the Middle East in 1992 as a senior sub-editor on the Middle East and Africa desk before taking up a post as correspondent, Jerusalem a year later. He is currently editor-in-charge in the Jerusalem bureau."
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