Israel registered the highest number of COVID cases in a month on Wednesday, a day after all pre-school and children under 12 were required to present a negative coronavirus test to return after the Hanukkah break. 786 new virus carriers were identified on Tuesday up from 607 a week earlier.
48% of the new cases were in children aged 5 to 11.
The “R” rate has fluctuated between 1 and 1.1. and on Wednesday, was 1.07.
Meanwhile, the number of serious patients continued to decline, dropping to 102 from 116 a week earlier. To date,21 Omicron cases have been identified in Israel. Read more here
The daily increase in infections fell to 651 by Thursday and the number of seriously ill fell to 96, the lowest figure since July. 54 are on ventilators. On Thursday the R number rose to 1.09, meaning the pandemic is expanding. Children aged 11 and under made up 52% of active cases. Read more here
Ten days after Dr. Elad Maor was diagnosed as the country’s first Omicron variant COVID-19 patient, he returned to work but was still feeling weak. He had been fully vaccinated with three shots of the Pfizer vaccine and tells his story at this link
The Israeli company Nanox, with Shamir Medical Centre, has launched a pilot programme of the Nanox.ARC advanced-imaging system to enable rapid diagnosis of patients with worsening pneumonia as a result of COVID-19. The hospital is the first in the world to have in-house access to the Nanox.ARC device, described as “the new digital X-ray technology… high-resolution, cheaper and involving less radiation,” Read more here
A Tel Aviv University research team has found that ulvan extracted from edible marine algae (seaweed) could help stop the spread of coronavirus.Read more here
According to the country’s Foreign Minister, the Czech Republic took a stand against antisemitism when it changed its voting pattern and for the first time rejected the UN General Assembly’s Jerusalem resolution, which referred to the Temple Mount solely by its Muslim name of al-Haram al-Sharif, ignoring Jewish ties to Judaism’s holiest site.
The text passed 129-11, with 31 abstentions. Only one other EU state, Hungary, rejected the text which is part of a push by the P.A. and Arab states across the UN system to rebrand Judaism’s most holy site as an exclusively Islamic one.Read more here
In October, a Hamas terror cell in the West Bank laid the groundwork for a massive terror attack aimed at IDF soldiers and Israeli civilians, planning Hamas to activate hidden sniper nests around the country. The terrorist group intended to detonate at least four explosives in Jerusalem and other Israeli cities.Terror cell members were arrested on the eve of the plan’s execution. The operation was organized mainly by Hamas officials in Istanbul.Read more here
The latest wave of terrorist attacks in Jerusalem and the West Bank are the result of ongoing and increasing incitement against Israel by Palestinian officials, factions and media outlets.The attacks are also the result of calls by Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) and other Gaza-based groups, repeatedly urging West Bank Palestinians to launch “all forms of resistance” against Israel, including the “armed struggle.” Read more here
Avraham Elmaliah, 21, was returning home from prayers at the Western Wall in Jerusalem on Saturday when he was stabbed in the back and the neck by a Palestinian terorist near Damascus Gate. The attacker, who was in Israel illegally, then ran toward an Israeli Border Policeman before being shot by him and another officer. Read more here
An Israeli security guard was wounded on Monday in a car-ramming attack at a West Bank checkpoint when a 16 year old Palestinian terrorist drove at high speed into a guard post. Guards then opened fire and killed the terrorist. Read more here
In response to the car-ramming attack, the 5th terrorist attack in under 3 weeks, Israeli security forces raised the alert level at West Bank crossings. Read more here
An Israeli woman was stabbed and wounded in front of her children while taking them to school in east Jerusalem on Wednesday. The suspect, a Palestinian female minor, fled the scene and was later arrested inside a nearby school. Read more here
Ziad Abu Ziyad, a senior Fatah journalist in eastern Jerusalem wrote on Dec. 5, 2021, saying: “The attacks by [Palestinian] individuals are useless spilling of blood without purpose….These killings will not bring us independence.””Where is the Palestinian leadership that bears responsibility for managing the struggle?…Why do you cheer and glorify useless individual actions to cover up your leadership helplessness?” Read more here
After several Gazan migrants drowned off the Greek coast on Nov. 6, the “We Want to Live” movement, that began in 2019, has resurfaced to demand a decent life for Gazans. Twitter user “Uncle Hassan” tweeted on Nov. 25, “We Gazans want an open country like in the old days to be able to work in the West Bank and Israel. Our youth have become fish food during their emigration from Gaza in search of a decent life.” A protest co-ordinator said “This government has starved, humiliated and robbed people of their ability to provide for their children.” Read more here
Israel, Greece, and Cyprus continued their series of trilateral summits on Tuesday. The three countries.have close co-operation on natural gas from the Mediterranean Sea, as well as in security matters. The discussions were also set to include tourism, climate change, and the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more here
Israel officially joined Horizon Europe, the European Union’s largest research and innovation programme on Monday, opening the way for Israeli academics and companies to bid for billions of euros made available for research funding. Read more here
A delegation of 16 young European politicians (from Austria, Croatia, Cyprus, Estonia, Greece, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania and Sweden)visited Israel recently. As well as touring Gaza periphery communities and Jerusalem, they visited Israeli start-ups and were briefed by the Foreign Ministry’s head of international law. Read more here
Israeli scientists from Impact NRS, BGU and Volcani Centre hope to increase the efficiency of cows’ guts to reduce the amount of methane produced. Currently, cows produce 30% of methane gas emissions. Read more here
The Israeli defence establishment has completed a 65-kilometre (40-mile) upgraded barrier with the Gaza Strip. After Hamas made extensive use of its offensive tunnel network, the military proposed building the barrier to remove the threat of cross-border attack tunnels, and stop terrorists from Gaza from infiltrating into southern Israel. Read more here
Israel Weapons Industries has developed the patented “Gal” flexible lightweight one-size-fits-all versatile protective suit designed to protect security forces during riots. Read more here
A Palestinian baby was saved last week by the quick response of an IDF medic on duty at the Zeitim border crossing in Jerusalem. 19 year-old Corporal Adam, who was stationed at the crossing as a combat medic, rushed to the infant’s help as he struggled to breathe. Read more here
An Israeli lab has bred dozens of hyperactive mice and says they are one of the most useful tools so far for understanding Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and could potentially help scientists to develop treatments. Read more here
New “life saving” artificial intelligence developed in Israel tells doctors which patients are most at risk of death or serious illness should they develop a blood infection. The system will soon go live at a Tel Aviv hospital.Read more here
A team of Tel Aviv University scientists say they have developed a drug that slows protein deposits on the brain that are a cause of Alzheimer’s disease, and say it may also be used for treating some autism cases.Read more here
Miss Universe contestants touring Israel before the competition in Eilat on December 12 modelled for a Hanukkah fashion show produced by Haboydem, a Jerusalem secondhand clothing store and women’s rehabilitation centre. Read more here
Clemence Botino, the contestant representing France at this year’s Miss Universe competition in Eilat, has been cleared to leave quarantine and join the competition 10 days after she tested positive for COVID following her arrival in Israel. She had been fully vaccinated and tested negative before departing France, but tested positive upon landing in Israel in late November.Read more here
Sheree Trotter : We Maoris take inspiration from Israel as we fight for our rights. (Israel is) A light for the indigenous nations. Despite what anti-Zionist ideologues might assume, the Jews of Israel are an inspiration for many Maori.….My mother’s generation was punished physically for speaking in their native tongue at school. It is only in recent decades that this unfortunate state of affairs has been reversed and the Māori language has experienced a strong resurgence. Interestingly, the Israeli ulpan served as an inspiration for one of the Māori leaders who established kohanga reo (Māori language preschools). Indeed, the revival of Hebrew serves as an inspiration to many indigenous peoples seeking to revitalize languages negatively impacted by colonization. The development of a distinct language, culture, and belief system within a particular land prior to colonization is a defining feature of indigeneity, one shared by Māori and Jews.Read more here
Mark Goldfeder: UNWRA spends more to do less, while perpetuating a problem it was meant to resolve and undermining the peace process.
…..UNRWA’s current definition is utterly inconsistent with how all other refugees are classified, including by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the agency responsible for every other (non-Palestinian) refugee on the planet. For example, under Article I(c)(3) of the UN Convention and Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees, a person is no longer a refugee if he or she has “acquired a new nationality.” UNRWA’s definition, which is not anchored in treaty but was invented by the organization itself, contains no similar provision. According to one expert, 99% of UNRWA’s 5.7 million “refugees” are not actually refugees at all under the standard definition of that term, while others put that number even higher. Read more here