We Mourn, We Don’t Take Vengeance

Following our "Israel Refocused" newsletter yesterday, terrible news came through of a further escalation of violence. At this sad moment in the life of Israel, our thoughts have been encapsulated by this letter from NIF CEO Daniel Sokatch.

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Israel Refocused: Mourning the loss of Israel’s youth

Eyal Yifrah, Naftali Fraenkel and Gil-Ad ShaarNews came through early yesterday morning our time of the devastating murder of Eyal Yifrah, Naftali Fraenkel and Gil-Ad Shaar. We echo the statement issued by NIF in Israel and America:

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Statement regarding murder of kidnapped teenagers

We are devastated to learn of the deaths of the three young Israeli kidnapping victims, Naftali Frankel, Gilad Shaer and Eyal Yifrah. They were murdered by extremists determined to shed innocent blood and to perpetuate conflict.

We join with their families and with everyone mourning these three young men. And we ask that every leader, Israeli and Palestinian, take every step necessary to maintain calm and prevent more loss of life. We owe it to the memories of these young men, and to the countless others who have died in this conflict, to do all we can to bring peace and reconciliation and an end to the bloodshed between our two peoples.

May their memory be a blessing.

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A new Israel experience

As you know, NIF supports and enables social change organisations in Israel which are building a society that values religious pluralism, social justice, human rights and democracy.

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Statement on missing Israeli teenagers

The thoughts and hopes of the New Israel Fund Australia Foundation are with the families of the three Israeli teenagers who have been abducted. May they be returned speedily and unharmed into the arms of their loved ones.

We call on those responsible for their abduction to free them immediately. Any attack on civilians is to be deplored.

We hope that the efforts of both the Israeli and Palestinian security services meet with success and bring them home safe and sound.

May those responsible be brought to justice. We express our deepest concern that this terrible episode ends without further violence and harm to civilians, be they Israeli or Palestinian. 

Israel Refocused: New “Jewish-trumps-democratic” legislation

Welcome to the first NIF Australia “Israel Refocused” e-mail news update.

We are going to send these e-mails to you periodically to keep you up to date with some of the news that's happening in Israel, particularly in our focus areas: human and civil rights, women's issues, religious pluralism and tolerance, and leadership training.

Hopefully we can share some news stories you may not otherwise have seen -- the aim of these emails is to complement news out of Israel you already consume, rather than replace it.

Happy reading, and if you have any feedback, or want to suggest an item for the next edition, feel free to get in touch with us at info@nif.org.au.

Regards,

Liam (Executive Director) and Dani (Project Officer)

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Advancing the Status of Women, June 2014

In some cases, religious law, social institutions and traditions in Israel have kept girls and women at a disadvantage in schools, in the workplace, in divorce cases, and as victims of violence. Israeli women in minority groups have disproportionately high rates of unemployment, poverty, health problems and abuse of basic rights.

Women Should Be Seen and HeardMoreover, in a worrying trend, ultra-Orthodox norms regarding gender segregation have been increasingly spilling over into the public domain, as women and girls are increasingly excluded from public spaces. At the same time, growing public awareness is now mobilising action across the political and social spectrums, engendering new organisations committed to religious freedom and women's rights, and galvanising veteran ones.

These groups, with support from NIF and Shatil, are succeeding in making change.

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Yom Ha'atzmaut 2014

“THE STATE OF ISRAEL … will foster the development of the country for the benefit of all its inhabitants; it will be based on freedom, justice and peace as envisaged by the prophets of Israel; it will ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitants irrespective of religion, race or sex; it will guarantee freedom of religion, conscience, language, education and culture.”

When David Ben-Gurion read these words sixty-six years ago in Tel Aviv, under imminent threat of war from its new neighbours, Israel declared a daring vision for itself.

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Our new leadership team

NIF Australia has renewed its leadership team, electing Irving Wallach as its new president and Mandi Katz as vice-president. Former president, Robin Margo SC, retired from the board and joins Assoc Prof Mark Baker, Justice Stephen Rothman AM, Ronald Sackville AO QC and Robyne Schwarz AM on its Advisory Council.

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We're Hiring!

We're excited to announce that we're hiring a Project Officer to help us prepare for and coordinate our educational events, manage communications, and deliver an exciting new initiative. Enquire below!

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