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Continental Moving to Accommodate Orthodox Passengers


In a move to accommodate Sabbath observant travelers, Continental Airlines announced that beginning in October, coinciding with the changeover to standard time, flights from NYC to Tel Aviv would leave two hours earlier on Thursday.

The flights leaving on Thursday will leave earlier to enable passengers to arrive in Ben-Gurion International Airport ahead of the early winter Sabbath. (Editor's Note: On a recent Continental flight, this reporter was told that effective Sept. 4th, "specialty" (including kosher) meals would no longer be served on Continental flights.)

Islamic Jihad Claims Negohot Shooting Attack That Killed Two

By Ha'aretz

The Islamic Jihad has claimed responsibility for Friday's shooting attack in the West Bank settlement of Negohot, in which two Israelis, including a baby girl, were killed and two others lightly wounded, Israel Radio reported Sunday. Killed in the attack were Eyal Yiberbaum, 27, and seven-month-old Shaked Avraham.

Palestinian sources said the gunman was 22-year-old Mahmoud Hamedan from the village of Durrah, south of the West Bank city of Hebron. Hamedan was released from an Israeli prison two months ago, after serving a 14-month sentence.

The gunman infiltrated the isolated settlement Friday, at around 9:30 p.m., from the northwest, through an area not enclosed by a fence. Armed with an M-16 assault rifle, he knocked on the door of one of the homes on the edge of the settlement. Yiberbaum, who was visiting the home for the Rosh Hashanah holiday, opened the door and was critically wounded when the gunman opened fire. He died a short time later.

The owner of the house and a soldier opened fire at the gunman, who tried to escape, firing a number of rounds while running outside. Shots fired at another home hit and critically wounded the seven-month-old baby girl, who also died a short while later. An army reserve unit that rushed to the scene killed the gunman.

Government officials blamed Yasir Arafat's Palestinian Authority for not stopping such violence. The officials refused to say whether Israel would now speed up efforts to expel Arafat. Israel has not said when it would take action against the Palestinian leader, but it is believed the trigger could be a major Palestinian terror attack with many casualties.

Friday's shooting attack in the settlement of Negohot, came as Jews in Israel were celebrating the first night of Rosh Hashanah - the Jewish New Year -, which began at sundown Friday and ended Sunday evening. "The Palestinians have started the Jewish New Year with another bloody terrorist attack," said David Baker, an official in the Prime Minister's Office. "It's obvious that they've taken a New Year's resolution to continue with their trail of terror against Israel."

Arafat Loyalist Named as New Palestinian Security Chief

By Ross Dunn (VOA-Jerusalem)

As Palestinians marked the third anniversary of their infitada, or uprising, Yasir Arafat's Fatah party put together a new cabinet, which replaces a U.S.-backed security chief with an Arafat loyalist. The move is seen as a setback for the so-called road map to peace. The new cabinet will be headed by the prime minister-designate, Ahmed Qureia. He replaces Mahmoud Abbas, who resigned earlier this month, after losing a power struggle with Arafat over the control of the security forces.

Arafat's Fatah faction has ousted Mohammed Dahlan, the man Abbas had selected as his security chief, from the new cabinet. Arafat's long-time ally, a Palestinian police force commander, Maj.-Gen. Nasser Yousef, replaces him.

Dahlan enjoyed the support of the U.S. administration, even though he had refrained from dismantling and disarming Palestinian militia groups. Observers believe it is even less likely that Yousef will move against these organizations, because of his loyalty to Arafat. Also, the way the new cabinet is formed, Arafat will continue to have overriding power over the Palestinian Authority, including security.

Iranian FM Warns Israel Not to Strike Nuclear Facilities

By Reuters

Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharazi, denying his country has "any program to produce weapons of mass destruction," warned Israel that Iran would respond to any strike on its nuclear facilities.

In an interview aired Sunday on ABC's "This Week," Kharazi said the possibility of an Israeli military strike on its nuclear program was "a threat, no question." Israel has warned that Iran's nuclear program posed a threat to the world and was reportedly considering such a strike if Iran is pursuing a nuclear option.

Kharazi said: "Israel knows if it commits such an action, it would be reacted." He declined to be more specific, saying simply "there will be a response" if Israel launched such a strike.

Early last week, Iran paraded six of its newly deployed medium-ranged missiles, which military analysts say could reach Israel or U.S. bases in the Gulf. Iran insists its nuclear scientists are not working on a weapons program but are trying to meet the country's soaring electricity demand.

"Certainly, we don't have any program to produce weapons of mass destruction, that is for sure," Kharazi said in the interview taped on Saturday evening.

Weizmann Scientist's Cancer Diagnosis Technique Gets FDA Clearance

By Israel Faxx News Services

Thanks to a diagnostic imaging technique that should soon be finding its way to medical establishments, many patients could be spared the pain and risk of biopsies. The technique, called 3TP, has recently received FDA clearance for use in the detection of breast and prostate cancer, and is slated for distribution as early as next year. It will enable doctors to distinguish between malignant tumors and benign lumps by scanning instead of cutting.

3TP (Three Time Point) makes use of existing MRI scanners, and a safe contrast agent that is injected into the patient. MRI scans the suspected tumor site repeatedly over a period of several minutes. The software developed for the method analyzes three of the MRI images, one before and two after the injection (hence the name 3TP), and then creates a colored likeness of the breast or prostate area based on the resulting data. A preponderance of red in the picture indicates malignancy, while mainly blue and green are signs of a benign growth.

The procedure, developed by Prof. Hadassa Degani and her research group at the Weizmann Institute of Science Biological Regulation Dept., arose from her research on the development of cancerous tumors. Typically, malignancies, which need a steady supply of oxygen and nutrients in order to grow, contain many small, new blood vessels. Blood flow in and out of the area of the tumor is usually accelerated. Tumor cells are distributed unevenly, with areas of densely packed cells that have tighter between-cell spaces than normal.

Israel Ranks Second in Global Chicken Consumption


Israel ranks second in the global community regarding chicken consumption, behind the United States. The Of Tov factory in Beit Shean reported it would supply the marketplace with over 500,000 birds this week, in time for the Rosh Hashanah holiday.

The annual poultry market in Israel is holding at NIS 2 billion, an impressive figure by any account. Some believe the nation's favorite food may be moving from falafel to chicken.

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