24 May 2017 - 28 Iyyar 5777 - כ"ח אייר ה' אלפים תשע"ז
Former Israeli Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger sentenced to prison E-mail

Former Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi of Israel Yona Metzger signed a plea agreement with the Jerusalem district attorney in January in which he pleaded guilty to charges of bribery and fraud. He will serve threeand-a-half years in prison, and was also fined NIS5 million by the court.

The prosecution issued an indictment against the rabbi for committing bribery, fraud and tax crimes during his tenure as Chief Rabbi of Israel.

The Jerusalem District Attorney’s Office said: “The prosecution insists upon a longer sentence and a higher ne, especially for someone who committed crimes while in such a senior position when he should have been serving as an example. He used his position to rake in money for his own pocket.”

Metzger’s defence team, will reportedly seek a sentence of two years as opposed to three-and-a-half. Additionally, the defence has reported that one of the rabbi’s apartments will be forfeited.

Metzger was charged in October 2015 with bribery, fraud and breach of trust. According to the indictment, he received a bribe of NIS10 million, NIS7 million of which made it into his pocket.

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“Make in India” at Israel Pavilion Aero India 2017 E-mail

The Israel Pavilion at Aero India this year featured an important development in Israeli defence technologies: “Make in India”. Eleven Israeli defence companies displayed their wares at the pavilion in February, presenting advanced, locally developed technologies under the umbrella of “Make in India”.

The defence co-operation between India and Israel builds on the strengths of both countries. Israeli designs matched with India’s singular development and manufacturing capabilities provide innovative and effective defence solutions contributing to the security and economies of both countries.

Commenting on the exhibition, SIBAT’s Director, Brig. Gen. (Ret.) Mishel Ben Baruch said: “Israel has proven itself to be India’s technological partner, advancing together into joint production and translating the ‘Make in India’ vision into reality.”

Defence Attaché Colonel Ze’ev Mivtzari added: “We are proud to be part of the  strengthening ties between India and Israel in the field of defence. In Aero India 2017, several strategic joint ventures will be signed by Indian and Israeli companies.”

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Israeli eye specialists visit Myanmar Print E-mail

Eye specialists from Eye from Zion, a humanitarian organisation in Israel, have been visiting Myanmar ever since 2009 to impart knowledge and expertise in ophthalmology to Myanmese doctors and conduct free eye surgeries and consultations for local patients.

This year, Israeli eye specialists led by Dr Shmuel Levertovsky conducted seminars, consultations and surgeries in glaucoma and oculoplastics at the Yangon Eye Hospital from 13 to 16 February.

(Issue Mar 2017)

More funding to Holocaust Museum in the Netherlands E-mail

The Dutch Government announced that it has allocated more than US$8.5 million to the ongoing establishment of a Holocaust museum in Amsterdam and a commemorative wall for victims.

The Cabinet of Prime Minister Mark Rutte announced funding – one of the largest expenditures ever undertaken in the Netherlands on Holocaust commemoration – to the museum of approximately US$6 million and the remaining US$2.5 million or so for a wall bearing the names of more than 100,000 Dutch Jews murdered in the Holocaust.

The museum opened last year thanks to a fundraising campaign led by the Jewish Cultural Quarter, a platform representing several institutions. Featuring artworks and videos, the musuem was opened while still in development, with an eye toward expanding its modest display into an institution on par with some of Europe’s more established museums commemorating the genocide.

Nazis and local collaborators murdered 75% of the country’s pre-Holocaust Jewish population of 140,000 – the highest death rate in occupied Western Europe.

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Israel's Science Minister Ofir Akunis visits India E-mail

Following on from the recent visit to India by Israel’s President Reuvan Rivlin in late November 2016, Israel’s Minister of Science, Technology and Space, Ofir Akunis, made an official visit to New Delhi and Bangalore from 5 to 8 December.

Minister Akunis was visiting India at the invitation of his Indian counterpart, Shri Harsh Vardhan, whom he met on 6 December. Minister Akunis was accompanied by Members of the Knesset (the Israeli Parliament) Yaakov Perry, the former Minister of Science, Technology and Space; Michal Rozin; Yitzhak Vaknin, the Director General of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Space; Peretz Vazan, and Avi Blasberger, Head of the Israel Space Agency.

Minister Akunis said: “Deepening the relations between India and Israel are a critical strategic goal for both countries. I am visiting India, a true friend of Israel, to broaden the scientific and technological cooperation between our countries. India and Israel are at the forefront of technology worldwide and we will continue to ensure they remain so.”

In New Delhi, Minister Akunis inaugurated an exhibition titled “Israeli Discoveries and Developments That Influenced the World”, organised by the Israeli Ministry of Science, Technology and Space, and visited the India International Science Festival at NPL. The cross-party Israeli delegation also met Indian parliamentarians and research institute fellows. In Bangalore, the Minister delivered a special address at The Global Technology Summit, met with the Minister of ITDT of the State of Karnataka, and visited the India Institute of Science.

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