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>JN Nov. 25, 1997, Vol. 5, No. 217

Hate on the Internet

By the Voice of America

Hate spread on the Internet computer network is a growing problem in the United States and abroad. Groups, such as "the Anti Defamation League," which track such things say the number of Internet hate sites exceeds 250. A civil rights group in Washington has launched its own Internet site which it hopes will counter the hate at -- www.civilrights.org -- which provides users with information on hate crimes and strategies to address those crimes. The site contains materials designed to teach young people about diversity and information on religious freedom issues and racial and gender preference programs.


French Nazi Trial May End Without Verdict

By IINS News Service

BORDEAUX, France - What was supposed to be France's last big wartime trial, of former minister Maurice Papon, may never be completed (due to his poor health) and never reveal whether he really knew he was sending Jews off to Nazi death camps.

The trial was adjourned for 10 days last Monday, after 87-year-old Papon, on trial for wartime crimes against humanity, was admitted to the hospital with a bad case of bronchitis.

Judge Jean-Louis Castagnede said the trial would resume Thursday and appointed a doctor to examine the former budget minister and Paris police prefect, and to submit a report on his health by Wednesday.

It was the second time Papon, who had a triple heart by-pass operation last year, had fallen ill with bronchitis, since his trial began Oct. 8. Papon, whose health has been an issue since the start of the trial, was first treated in the hospital for bronchitis, between Oct. 23 and Nov. 7.

The trial was due to begin its seventh week last week, in the assize court of this southwestern French city and had at last been expected to get to the heart of the matter.

He is accused of deporting around 1,500 Jews to Nazi death camps, while serving as secretary general of the Bordeaux prefecture, in charge of "Jewish affairs" during World War 2. Papon is only the second Frenchman to be tried for crimes against humanity, following the trial of Paul Touvier, the former French militia chief in Lyon, in 1994. Lyon Gestapo chief Klaus Barbie was tried in 1987, after being seized in Bolivia.


Two Ashdod Residents Charged with Spying for Iraq

By IINS News Service

Last month, two residents of Ashdod were arrested for allegedly having spied against Israel for Iraq, and having given information concerning Israeli targets to be hit with Iraqi missiles.

During the interrogation of the two, it was learned that one of the men came to Israel after lying about being Jewish. He explained that he felt compelled to leave Iraq, so he stated he was Jewish and made his way to Israel.

During October, the two suspects were arrested several times by police assigned to the serious crimes unit. A ban was placed on publicizing details of the case. Police determined they lacked sufficient evidence against the two and they were released. But last week, the ban on publishing details of the incident was lifted.


Western Wall Owned by Moslem Wakf?

By IINS News Service

According to a study conducted by lawyer Shmuel Berkovitz for the Jerusalem Institute for Israeli Studies, there may be some legitimacy to claims by the PLO Authority that the Western Wall is the property of the Moslem Wakf.

The PA, in the past, has stated that a Syrian document dating back about 150-years indicates the ownership of the Western Wall belongs to the Moslem Wakf.

According to the legal experts involved in the study, Israeli leaders failed to requisition the Western Wall following the June 1967 Six Day War. The study shows that Israeli officials only requisitioned what is now known as the Western Wall Plaza -- but not the wall itself.

Berkovitz is regarded to be a leading authority on the legal status of Jewish, Christian and Moslem holy sites.


Boy Burned at Memorial Ceremony Awarded NIS 3.1 Million

By IINS News Service

Elad Eichenwald, who was seriously burned seven years ago, during a Holocaust memorial ceremony in the 'Ariel' School in Ranaana, was awarded a NIS 3.1 million ($885,714) settlement.

The boy, who was 11 at the time of the accident, was standing close to one of the memorial torches. A teacher sprayed lighter fluid on one of the torches, which failed to ignite. Suddenly, a large flame erupted hitting Eichenwald, who sustained 3rd degree burns to much of his body. The school's principal and the teacher who sprayed the lighter fluid (which caused the injury) were charged with negligence.

The trial lagged for four years. Tel-Aviv District Court Judge, Esther Kobo succeeded in convincing both sides to work out a settlement. The parties involved agreed that the Ministry of Education would compensate Eichenwald NIS 2.1 million but they were unable to put a price on the pain and suffering the young boy has endured. Kobo ordered that the ministry add another NIS 1 million, for his pain and suffering.


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