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Rivlin Hoping for Unity Government

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23 Sep 2019
Rivlin Hoping for Unity Government
Israeli President Reuven Rivlin began hosting delegations at the President’s Residence in Jerusalem from the factions which crossed the electoral threshold in the recent elections on Sunday, making it clear to all of them that he was sharply opposed to the idea of holding a third election this year and that he was very much in favor of a national unity government coalition. Two unexpected developments came from the Joint (Arab) List, which recommended that Blue and White leader Benny Gantz be the next Prime Minister, while Yisrael Beytenu’s Avigdor Lieberman declined to make a recommendation, further complicating the electoral picture going forward.

On Monday, it was announced that the Balad faction within the Joint List was withdrawing its votes from the recommendation of the Joint List for Gantz, leaving incumbent Prime Minister and Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu with 55 recommendations while Gantz has 54. Political analysts disagreed on the implications of these developments except on the point of their meaning many days of tough negotiations and uncertainty lie ahead.

Israeli Athletes Qualify for 2020 Olympics
Israel’s small but rapidly growing community of baseball fans were cheered on Sunday by the national team defeating South Africa to finish atop  the six-team Europe/Africa Olympic qualifying tournament in Parma, Italy, and earning a chance to compete in the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. It will be the first time an Israeli national team competes in an Olympic Games since 1976, when the national soccer team qualified. Elsewhere, Israeli rhythmic gymnast also qualified for the Tokyo Games over the weekend by winning a bronze medal in the all-around event at the World Championships in Baku, Azerbaijan, on Friday. Her teammate Nicol Zelikman also qualified for Tokyo by finishing in the top 16 at the competition, while Israel’s national team finished in second place overall.

Christian Artist Gets Baptized in Israel
The movement to Boycott, Divest and Sanction (BDS) Israel suffered another defeat recently when Christian hip hop artist Lecrae visited the Jewish State to tour the Biblical sites and get baptized at the Yardenit Baptismal Site on the southern end of the Sea of Galilee. He posted several pictures of himself at popular Christian pilgrimage sites giving very positive reviews of Israel and recommending to his many social media followers to make a similar trip.

Israel Congratulates Saudi Arabia on National Day
The Arabic Twitter account of Israel’s Foreign Ministry posted a message to Saudi Arabia on Monday, marking the first time for such a public message from the Jewish State to it’s large neighbor to the southeast. “We sincerely congratulate the Saudi people on the occasion of the National Day of the Kingdom. We ask God to keep you safe and secure and wish you more prosperity,” read the message, which was yet another sign of warming relations between the two countries amidst a growing threat to both from Iran and Sunni Islamic fundamentalism.

Today’s video shows a Rosh Hashanah Message from the Technion


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