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Israel Update 29.10.20



It was announced last Friday that Sudan has agreed to make peace with Israel, making it the third Arab state to normalize ties as part of US-brokered deals since August. Read more here


Several key Sudanese political parties announced their opposition to the  decision. Read more here


Israel will send $5 million worth of wheat to Sudan. Read more here


Sudanese and Israeli officials will meet in the coming weeks to discuss a package of cooperation deals.Read more here




(Last Thursday’s figures in brackets for comparison)


Israel’s Health Ministry said on Thursday morning that 688  (1,094) new coronavirus cases were confirmed on Wednesday. The last time the number of new daily cases was below 700 was June 28. The number of active cases is 11,914 (19,207).  There were 464  (600) patients in serious condition, 199 (253) of them on ventilators. The death toll since the start of the pandemic is 2,494. (2,319)  Read more here


The Health Ministry reported Wednesday that 4,036 Israelis passed away (from all causes) during September, a rise of 18.6% compared to the same period in 2019. Of these, 642 people succumbed to coronavirus in September, accounting for 1 in 6 of all fatalities that month. Israel’s  coronavirus patient death rate is 0.79%. Globally the figure is 2.66%  while the declared coronavirus death rate in Italy stands at 6.68%, in Iran 5.72%, in the UK 4.79%, Belgium 3.27%, France 3.01%, the U.S. 2.75% and Russia 1.72%. Read more here


Government ministers on Monday night approved the reopening of schools (subject to conditions) for children in first to fourth grade early next week, as well the lifting of a series of other restrictions. Schools have been closed since September 18. Read more here


Nachman Ash, a former IDF chief medical officer will replace Ronni Gamzu as the coronavirus czar, who is making a planned return next month to his job running Ichilov Hospital. Ash has a graduate degree in Medical Informatics & a master’s in political science.Read more here




In early October, Arab Israelis had markedly reduced the number of infections in their community to just 7% of the country’s active cases, even though they represent 20% of Israel’s population. However, recently the number of cases has been climbing. Health officials unanimously blamed the resumption of weddings and large gatherings. Read more here


Umm al-Fahm residents Riham (a medical intern) and Anas (a computer programmer)  Aghbariya decided not to have the big wedding they’d planned. Instead, they donated everything they would have spent to charity, adding up to around 450 bags of non-perishable food. “Enough with the enormous parties, anyway. It’s a huge waste of money and food, much of which is thrown away…,” Riham said.Read more here




After a successful pilot in Ashkelon, Ben-Gurion University has signed an agreement with the Israeli Ministry of Health to expand a tracing programme to detect and monitor SARS CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, in sewage samples from 14 cities across the country. Read more here


The innovative coronavirus wastewater test has allowed Haifa’s Technion to reopen the campus.  It allows for the detection of otherwise asymptomatic cases and can narrow down cases to specific zones. Read more here




Ziv Medical Centre in Tzfat (Safed) will become the first hospital in Israel to use drones to transport medical equipment, drugs, and blood and Corona tests, significantly reduce human contact with the tests and shorten processes. (TY Michael) Read more here




The Israeli Cabinet voted on Sunday to extend by a year a multi-billion dollar programme aimed at closing the gaps between Jewish and Arab communities in Israel. The plan, initiated in 2015, allocated $2.96 billion; the extension adds another $500 million. A new five-year-plan is set to be approved for 2022.  Read more here




Two rockets were fired from Gaza at the city of Ashkelon and nearby communities  last Thursday night, the second attack in days. Read more here




The IAF’s only female F-35 fighter pilot has been named the new deputy commander of the 116th Squadron. Read more here




Hadassah Medical Centre is holding talks to open a hospital in Dubai. Read more here


Football leagues from the UAE and Israel have signed a cooperation agreement, The memorandum of understanding includes joint workshops, and the development of the technical side of sport.  Read more here




EchoCare Technologies has developed ECHO (Elderly Care Home Observer), a cloud-connected monitor based on radar technology. The device detects falls, respiration distress, drowning in a bathtub and other dangerous events. It alerts to potential health deterioration by continuously monitoring and analyzing the person’s location, posture, motion and respiration. Read more here




Israel’s AquaMaof Aquaculture Technologies has won a $90 million contract to build an on-land salmon farm in Reno, Nevada. Producing up to 60,000 tons of fish per year without the use of chemicals or antibiotics, it will be one of the largest salmon farms in the U.S.Read more here


BlueGreen Water Technologies, has won a $945,000 contract to keep the toxic algae in Lake Okeechobee, Florida, from getting into the St. Lucie River estuary. The Israeli company has developed a unique technological solution called Lake Guard and has successfully dealt with toxic algae in China, South Africa, Russia, Israel and the United States. Read more here


Diagnostic Robotics, an Israeli medical data analytics startup has signed  agreements with the Mayo Clinic and other leading health providers as artificial intelligence becomes a key instrument in medical care. Read more here




Israeli biotech Mileutis has developed Imilac, designed to treat mastitis in cows by boosting their immune systems. Imilac is near the marketing stage and can replace the wide use of antibiotics for which resistance is growing and being passed to humans via milk products. (TY Michael) Read more here




Two single malt whiskies, M&H Classic and M&H Elements Sherry Cask, produced at the Milk & Honey Distillery Tel Aviv, recently received top scores from Whisky Advocate, one of the world’s leading whisky magazines in the world. Read more here




Wall Street Journal Editorial: Alumni of the previous U.S. administration were certain that a pro-Israel foreign policy would inflame the Arab world, and that Mideast progress depended on accommodating the regime in Iran. In fact, Israel is the region’s chief source of stability and Iran its main source of terror and mayhem. The agreement by Sudan, a country of more than 40 million, to normalize Israel ties shows that the peace cascade goes beyond the Persian Gulf and could extend across the Arab world. Arab states still care about the Palestinian cause, but withholding recognition from the Jewish state has yielded little progress on a Palestinian state. Read more here


Yoav Limor: Unlike the peace deals with the UAE and Bahrain, the treaty with Sudan has little to offer from an economic standpoint.…(However) the deal with Khartoum goes a long way toward chipping at the notion that any progress between the Arab world and Israel is inextricably linked to the Palestinian issue. Read more here


Raphael Ahren: The Israel-Sudan normalization agreement announced Friday was an historic breakthrough, but the path to a formal peace treaty and the establishment of full diplomatic relations may yet be complicated and lengthy. The announcement refers to an end to the “state of belligerence”, promises economic and trade relations; it doesn’t specify full diplomatic ties or reciprocal embassies. Read more here