Thursday, 21. February 2019

Communist Party of Israel leading activist, MK Aida Touma-Sliman (Hadash – Joint List) head of Knesset Committee for the Advancement of the Status of Women, has called upon the public in Israel to join today’s (Tuesday, December 4) nation-wide women’s strike to protest violence against women, in particular after a recent upsurge that included the murders of two teenage girls last week.

Protests will be held next week during the visit to Israel by Italian Interior Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini on December 11-12. The neo-facist Salvini, who leads the far-right Northern League, is known for his racist positions on immigration and his opposition to accepting asylum requests. Salvini also stirred protests when he vowed to take actions to expel all the Roma people living in Italy.

The Hadash fraction in the Histadrut has called upon the labor federation to join a strike supported by dozens of women’s groups for next Tuesday, December 4, to protest the social plague of violence against women. The Chairwoman of the Knesset Committee on the Status of Women and Gender Equality MK, Aida Touma-Sliman (Hadash – Joint List), has also called upon the public in Israel to join the nationwide protest.

A mass demonstration will be held today, Friday, November 30, in the mixed Arab-Jewish city of Lod (al-Ludd in Arabic) in the center of the country after governmental authorities demolished a three-story building owned by Arab-Palestinians during the course of this week, leaving the families living there homeless.

The Knesset Committee on the Status of Women and Gender Equality unanimously approved on Monday, November 26, the second and final readings of a bill that will permit adult victims of sexual assault to agree to reveal their identities without permission from a court.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has announced that he will chair a new ministerial committee on combating domestic violence, even though his government failed to budget funds for such a plan proposed by an earlier task force. Netanyahu’s announcement drew criticism from Joint List MK Aida Touma-Sliman (Hadash), who heads the Knesset Committee on the Status of Women and Gender Equality. The Communist MK accused him of ignoring the growing phenomenon for years and pointed out that the very government he heads recently voted against a proposal to establish a parliamentary commission of inquiry on violence against women.

Despite weeks of extensive public protest over violence against women, the far-right coalition brought down on Wednesday, November 21, an opposition-sponsored bill proposed by Chairwoman of the Knesset’s Committee on the Status of Women and Gender Equality, Hadash MK Aida Touma-Sliman (Joint List), to combat the phenomenon.

The government’s plan to fight domestic violence has yet to receive a budget despite promises when the plan was approved a year ago to earmark to it 250 million shekels ($67 million) over a five year period.  Due to the delay in funding, the Knesset Research and Information Center has stated that it is impossible to gauge how much of the plan will be implemented in the coming years. The center gathered data on behalf of the Knesset Committee on the Status of Women and Gender Equality.

The Airbnb.com home-rental company has announced that it will be removing its listings located in Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank. The corporation said in a press release that it had completed a reexamination of its policy, which had previously allowed such listings since “people-to-people travel has considerable value and we want to help bring people together.”

However, after consulting with various authorities, the company decided to drop roughly 200 listings in the settlements. “We concluded that we should remove listings in Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank that are at the core of the dispute between Israelis and Palestinians,” Airbnb said.

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