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A Year of Crisis

Friday, November 11, 2022

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Every week, we post seven to ten news stories from Israel with a suggested prayer focus and scripture for each one, guiding readers how to pray for Israel’s most urgent needs. This Prayer Update is also sent to over 18,000 subscribers every Friday by e-mail. Please contact us at intl.office@bridgesforpeace.com if you would like to receive this Prayer Update by e-mail.

Iran and Economy: Challenges Netanyahu’s New Government Likely to Face

by Ynet

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US President Joe Biden and Israeli Opposition Leader Benjamin Netanyahu

Wednesday, 9 November 2022 | Now that the election results are official and Benjamin Netanyahu is starting to prepare to make a return to the premiership, it is time to take a look at the challenges that lie ahead of him—of which there are quite a few.

US President Joe Biden reached out to Netanyahu on Monday, waiting several days to make the move following the publication of the official election results on Thursday. While this may be a president being tied up with the concurring US midterm elections, another explanation suggests that it expresses his discontent with Israel’s new government.

In a conversation that lasted eight minutes, Biden apparently told Netanyahu that “we are brothers, we will make history together…My commitment to Israel is unquestionable.”

Netanyahu told the American president: “We will bring more historic peace agreements, it is within reach. My commitment to our alliance and our relationship is stronger than ever.”

Over the past week, many world leaders congratulated Netanyahu for his win, including French President Emmanuel Macron, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, Indian leader Narendra Modi, and Italy’s recently elected Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni.

Netanyahu will have to decide which diplomatic ties he will pursue during his term. Given the reputation of his far-right coalition members, he will have to convince the international community that his government still falls under the definition of a fair democracy.

One of his first challenges is the maritime deal with Lebanon, which Israel recently approved and which Netanyahu vehemently opposed. He initially called the deal an act of surrender, but later softened his stance and said he will honor it.

Additionally, Netanyahu is expected to act upon his spoken intentions to build on the Abraham Accords—with Saudi Arabia being his first goal. However, his efforts won’t necessarily be welcomed with open arms, especially given the current status quo at the Temple Mount.

In the meantime, no drastic changes are expected in Israel’s policy of rejecting the Iranian nuclear deal. Although Netanyahu may have to deal with the situation in which Iran decides to become a nuclear power nonetheless.

Regarding West Bank [Judea and Samaria] settlements, Netanyahu will be under a lot of pressure from his far-right and religious allies to finally resume construction projects. The Americans are expected to have little patience for what they see as injustice done to the Palestinian minority.

This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the topic of the Palestinians. Netanyahu will have to reevaluate the current situation in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, with a constant terror threat looming over the heads of Israeli civilians.

Additionally, most of the state-security directorate will undergo a transition in representatives within the next month and half—Israel will welcome a new IDF chief of staff and defense minister.

They will have to assess how to continue acting against the some 240 shooting attacks that have taken place in the West Bank since August, most of them targeting IDF forces. Palestinian militants are gaining influence and power at a fast pace, and the price the IDF is paying is certainly growing.

Beyond the home front, Netanyahu will need to clarify the Israeli stance on the war in Ukraine. In his election campaign, he once said that he would consider the option of providing Ukraine with weapons, though this may have been a strategic move to pile up votes. Given he does decide to go this route, future ties with Russia will become challenging.

Another global challenge that has affected Israel is inflation. The economic hot topic in Israel is the cost of living, which will have to be one of the first things the new government addresses. Prices have surged some 19% in the past year, bringing on some of the most substantial economic crisis Israel has seen in years.

Source: (Excerpt of an article originally published by Ynetnews on November 8, 2022. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: U.S. Embassy Tel Aviv/commons.wikimedia.org

Photo License: Wikimedia

Prayer Focus
Pray for Benjamin Netanyahu as he prepares to take the helm in the Israeli government once again. Ask the Lord to grant him great wisdom as he deals with critical issues that will effect not just Israel, but the entire world. Pray that his coalition will be united and committed to those decisions that are in line with God’s will.

Scripture

And He changes the times and the seasons; He removes kings and raises up kings; He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding.


- Daniel 2:21

Palestinians to Push for Review of ‘Ongoing Occupation’ at The Hague

by Itamar Eichner ~ Ynetnews

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The International Criminal Court Headquarters in The Hague

Monday, 7 November 2022 | In a last ditch effort involving the United States, Israel will attempt to torpedo a Palestinian move to pass a UN resolution calling for an urgent opinion from the International Court of Justice [ICJ] in The Hague on the legality of Israel’s alleged “ongoing occupation.”

The special “Politics and De-colonization” committee is expected to discuss the matter on Wednesday, and if consensus is reached, the Palestinians will table it for a second round of votes at the UN General Assembly in December. Israeli Ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan said he will demand a vote on the issue this Friday in an attempt to nullify the Palestinian effort to pass the move for the ICJ to weigh in on the “occupation” without a proper vote.

The Palestinian move to push for an ICJ opinion came days after publication of a report by the UN Commission of Inquiry into Human Rights Violations in the West Bank [Judea and Samaria] and Gaza, which concluded that Israel has committed “war crimes” and “crimes against humanity” against the Palestinians in the wake of 2021 Gaza war, dubbed Operation Guardian of the Walls.

Israeli officials suggested the move was coordinated with the report’s committee, led by Navi Pillay, from the start.

The move also comes one year after Palestinian Authority [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas speech to the UN General Assembly, in which he said that if Israel won’t leave the West Bank, he will take the matter to The Hague to force the ICJ to issue a legal opinion on the legality of the occupation.

The Palestinian initiative seeks for the ICJ to “determine the legal ramifications deriving from Israel’s continuous disregard for the Palestinian people’s rights for self-determination, the ongoing occupation, the annexation of Palestinian territory annexed in 1967, including steps that were designed to alter the demographic situation and the status of the city of Jerusalem, the affirmation of discriminatory legislation to that effect, the manner in which Israeli policy affects the occupation’s legal standings and what are the legal ramifications stemming from this move with regards to the international community and the United Nations.”

The Palestinians are seeking for the ICJ to rule that the Israeli occupation is not temporary—as described by resolution 242 of the UN Security Council—but permanent, making it a de facto annexation. The ICJ could also recommend the manner in which to engage with Israel, whether operatively, by sanctions or boycott.

On the Israeli side, there’s a concern that this would embolden anti-Israeli movements, such as the Boycott, Divest, Sanction Movement and other pro-boycott actors around the globe. The United States and the European Union are trying to apply pressure on the Palestinians to avoid making such a move, but so far the efforts have proven fruitless.

“Israel rejects the Palestinian resolution,” the Foreign Ministry said. “The Palestinian leadership’s unrelenting creativity to initiate moves that will only serve to fuel the conflict is both alarming and anxiety inducing. It is part of an orchestrated, specifically timed campaign that is marred by anti-Semitism, and is designed to delegitimize Israel’s right for self-defense. Supporting them is a prize for terrorism and anti-Israeli sentiment. Israel will combat this resolution and we call on all UN countries to reject it outright.”

Erdan added: “Abbas is once again engaging in a destructive behavior that will only serve to hurt the Palestinian people. We will make all countries understand that supporting such an initiative only rewards terrorist organizations and will further fuel the ongoing conflict.”

Source: (This article was originally published by Ynetnews on November 6, 2022. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Hypergio/commons.wikimedia.org

Photo License: Wikimedia

Prayer Focus
Cry out to the Lord for Israel’s success in “torpedoing” this destructive anti-Semitic move to delegitimize Israel’s right to self-defense. Pray that the efforts of the US and the EU will have an impact as well, and beseech the Lord that UN countries will, in fact, reject the move outright.

Scripture

Consider my enemies, for they are many; and they hate me with cruel hatred. Keep my soul, and deliver me; let me not be ashamed, for I put my trust in You. Let integrity and uprightness preserve me, for I wait for You.


- Psalm 25:19–21

First Israeli Wounded by Gaza Rocket to become IDF Officer

by Matan Tzuri ~ Ynetnews

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The graduation ceremony of the IDF officer training course (illustrative)

Tuesday, 8 November 2022 | Shila Naamat was just one year and eight months old when a rocket from the Gaza Strip hit his home in the southern city of Sderot in March 2002.

Shrapnel from the rocket moderately wounded Naamat, who was playing on the balcony of the home when the projectile landed, and he was evacuated to a hospital in moderate condition.

Naamat was the first Israeli civilian in Sderot to be wounded by rockets from the Palestinian enclave.

The incident happened when there was no safe space nor bomb shelters on every corner of the bombarded city, including private homes. There were also no rocket alert sirens, and certainly, no Iron Dome that could protect the civilians.

Every Qassam rocket that was fired from the Strip at Sderot in the first few years had fatal and destructive consequences. Residents of the city and other communities near the Gaza border were forced to adapt to a new reality, which sadly continues to this day.

Naamat sustained a major wound to his leg and was fitted with platinum in his leg that has accompanied him all his life. But he decided his injury will not hold him back. On the contrary, the injury eventually provided him with the needed drive to achieve his life goal: becoming an IDF [Israel Defense Forces] officer.

“The IDF officer’s training meant a lot to me. I learned many things about the IDF command, Israeli society and of course the security system,” Naamat says.

“I have more ambitions and I won’t let my injury stop me. I want to reach senior commanding positions, and in the future, do some public service, especially for the Israeli periphery.

“Me and my cousin, who is an Israeli Air Force officer, are working with the Sderot Youth Council to open up the young people of Sderot to important and commanding positions in the IDF.

“There are great people in Sderot, and in the periphery, but not all of them have the knowledge and the tools to get on the right path,” Naamat adds.

Naamat will finish the officers’ training course later this week, and immediately after will undergo a leg surgery on one of the muscles in the injured leg. After the operation, he will return to his military service.

“I hope to recover from the surgery quickly and begin my tenure as the officer. I was able to overcome injures when I was just a toddler, so I can definitely do it now,” he says.

Source: (This article was originally published by Ynetnews on November 7, 2022. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: IDF Spokesperson's Unit/commons.wikimedia.org

Photo License: Wikimedia

Prayer Focus
Praise the Lord for Shila Naamat’s courage and resilience. Pray that his dream of reaching a senior command position will be realized and for the success of the surgery on his leg. But also cry out to the Lord that the old “new reality” faced by Israelis near the Gaza border will be replaced with an end to terror and violence as well as a true atmosphere of peace.

Scripture

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”


- Joshua 1:9

Terror Attack in Old City: Three Police Officers Hurt

by Kate Norman

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The Iron Gate entrance to the Temple Mount

Friday, 4 November 2022 | Three police officers were injured yesterday in a terror stabbing attack in the Old City of Jerusalem, Israeli media reported.

The police stopped a Palestinian man—later identified as 20-year-old Bader Amer from the Beit Hanina neighborhood in eastern Jerusalem—to question him for suspicious behavior near the Iron Gate entrance to the Temple Mount.

During the inspection, Amer pulled out a knife and stabbed one of the police officers in the upper body, police told the Times of Israel.

Two more officers who were on scene shot Amer, who was later declared dead.

One of the officers was reportedly injured by friendly fire in the incident, the Times of Israel reported.

A third officer may have been lightly injured, according to the Times of Israel, though it is unclear how. I24news reported that only two police officers were injured in the incident, but that a third person was lightly injured by ricocheted bullets.

The terrorist was identified by the Jerusalem Post as a supporter of the Lion’s Den terrorist group based in Nablus.

Hours later, a 13-year-old Israeli girl was seriously injured by a bullet in Kiryat Arba, a city on the outskirts of Hebron in Judea and Samaria.

The teenager, Tamar Aharon, was taken to a local clinic, the Jerusalem Post reported, and later taken to the Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem for emergency surgery. She was later reported to be in serious but no longer life-threatening condition.

Israeli security forces are reportedly still investigating the source of the bullet that hit Aharon, but they suspect that it may have been a stray bullet, the Jerusalem Post reported.

These incidents are the latest in a string of clashes over the past few days.

An Israeli soldier was injured on Wednesday in a car ramming attack at a checkpoint near Modiin. The terrorist, after running his vehicle into the soldier, exited the car and charged the soldier with an axe before being shot and killed.

Last weekend also saw a spate of terror attacks. On Saturday, a terrorist opened fire on a father and son outside of Hebron as well as the first responders who arrived to help. The father died from his injuries at the hospital while his son and the first responders suffered injuries ranging from light to serious.

On Sunday, another Palestinian rammed his vehicle into Israeli soldiers at two separate locations outside of Jericho before being shot by a nearby police officer and civilian. He was taken to the hospital for treatment but died from his injuries. Five soldiers were injured in the attack.

Meanwhile, Israeli security forces are continuing their Operation Breaking the Wave in response to a terror wave this summer that saw 19 people killed across Israel. The operation consists of near-nightly arrest raids, which often result in gunfights between Israeli soldiers and armed Palestinian militants belonging to several different terrorist groups.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, November 4, 2022)

Photo Credit: Deror Avi/commons.wikimedia.org

Photo License: Wikimedia

Prayer Focus
Cry out to God that the efforts of the Israeli security forces to bring this violence to an end will be successful. Pray for physical and emotional healing for all of those who have been injured and for peace and comfort for those who have lost loved ones in the spate of attacks this year. Ask the Lord to give Israeli leaders additional strategies that will be effective in restoring calm to the entire nation.

Scripture

Trouble and anguish have overtaken me, yet Your commandments are my delights. The righteousness of Your testimonies is everlasting; give me understanding, and I shall live.


- Psalm 119:143–144

IDF Embarks on Two-day Drill along Northern Frontier

by Ilse Strauss

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The IDF conducting a war drill near the border with Lebanon (illustrative)

Monday, 7 November 2022 | The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) yesterday embarked on a two-day military drill along Israel’s northern border with Lebanon.

The exercise will simulate a flare-up between Israeli forces and the Lebanon-based terror group Hezbollah and include multiple units simulating “joint ground and air capabilities.

According to the IDF statement, the war games are aimed at enhancing the readiness of troops stationed in the flashpoint border area and will also test the readiness of the various Northern Command units in the event of an escalation with the Iran-backed terror group.

The military added that the drill was planned in advance, thus negating the notion that it comes in answer to a new assessment or developing threat.

The current exercise comes a month after a week-long IDF drill across northern Israel. It also comes just over a week after Jerusalem and Beirut—which are technically at war, with Lebanon refusing to acknowledge Israel’s existence—inked a landmark maritime border deal over rights to offshore fields rich in natural gas.

The deal brought to a close months of heightened tensions, with Hezbollah threatening to unleash a rocket rain on the Jewish state for encroaching on what it views as Lebanese assets.

Hezbollah has long been considered the IDF’s most formidable threat on Israel’s border. The Iranian terror puppet boasts an arsenal of nearly 150,000 rockets and missiles, many with the pin-point ability to reach anywhere in Israel.

Military assessments estimate that in a future war with Lebanon, the terror group has the ability to bombard key Israeli targets and densely populated areas with up to 3,000 rockets per day.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, November 7, 2022)

Photo Credit: Israel Defense Forces/commons.wikimedia.org

Photo License: Wikimedia

Prayer Focus
Pray that these war games will serve to strengthen Israel’s ability to protect the citizens of the north against any attacks or incursions by Hezbollah as well as the entire nation against rocket and missile attacks. Pray that any weaknesses in the chain of defense will be revealed and corrected and that all IDF troops will indeed be ready for whatever the enemy might attempt.

Scripture

For I will not trust in my bow, nor shall my sword save me. But You have saved us from our enemies, and have put to shame those who hated us. In God we boast all day long, and praise Your name forever.


- Psalm 44:6–8

British PM Abandons Plan to Move Embassy to Jerusalem

by JNS

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The UK Embassy building in Tel Aviv

Friday, 4 November 2022 | Former Prime Minister Liz Truss’ plans to move the British embassy in Israel to Jerusalem have been abandoned by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, Downing Street has confirmed.

Asked whether the UK government was still considering a move, a No. 10 spokesperson said: “It has been looked at. There are no plans to move the British embassy.”

When she was prime minister, Truss directed a review of whether the UK should follow the Trump administration’s lead and relocate the embassy from Tel Aviv.

The development followed a statement by British government officials to a group of journalists that there were “no plans to move the British embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem,” a statement that was lauded by the PLO [Palestinian Liberation Organization] mission in the UK.

When Truss met with Prime Minister Yair Lapid on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York in September, she informed the Israeli leader that she was conducting the review.

British church leaders, pro-Palestinian organizations, Arab ambassadors in London, European foreign ministries and some Conservative MPs representing heavily Muslim districts all opposed the proposal.

Source: (This article was originally published by the Jewish News Syndicate on November 3, 2022. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Aviad2001/commons.wikimedia.org

Photo License: Wikimedia

Prayer Focus
Pray that those who opposed the movement of the British embassy to Jerusalem, particularly British church leaders, will have a change of heart and recognize the benefits of a strong relationship with Israel as opposed to support for terror organizations and those who back them. Pray that former PM Liz Truss’s plans will, in fact, be carried out.

Scripture

Let all those who hate Zion be put to shame and turned back. Let them be as the grass on the housetops, which withers before it grows up.


- Psalm 129:5–6

For First Time since August, Rocket Fire from Gaza Rains down on South

by Yoav Zitun, Matan Tzuri ~ Ynetnews

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A rocket launched from Gaza (illustrative)

Friday, 4 November 2022 | For the first time since August, rockets were launched Thursday from the Gaza Strip into Israel, the military said.

The IDF [Israel Defense Forces] Spokesperson’s Unit said the rocket alert siren around 21:10 in several communities adjacent to the Gaza Strip, namely Ein Ha’shlosha, Kisufim and Nirim.

Sometime later, the military issued a statement saying that three more rocket launching attempts were identified from the Strip, but all had failed to reach the Israeli territory.

“The rockets exploded inside the Gaza Strip. As a result, an alert was activated in the Home Front Command App in open areas only,” the military said.

The Palestinian Islamic Jihad [PIJ] terror group [the second largest terror group in the Gaza Strip] claimed responsibility for the launch of a single rocket, which the IDF said was intercepted by the Iron Dome. The PIJ said the launch was “a reaction to the assassination of the Al-Quds Brigade commander in Jenin.”

The commander in question was Faruk Salama, who was eliminated earlier on Thursday in a joint operation involving IDF special forces, General Security Service Yamas (undercover unit in the West Bank) and the Border Police.

Salama was involved in the killing of Noam Raz, a commander for Yamam (Specialized Central Unit) in May. Salama was also a lead suspect in conspiring with another Palestinian terror faction known as the Lion’s Den to execute further terror attacks against Israeli targets.

The IDF raided the compound where Salama was staying and a gunfight ensued. He tried to escape but Israeli forces [gave chase]. While attempting to fire a gun at the soldiers, he was shot and killed.

Five militants were arrested, all carrying M-16 assault rifles. One of them was almost apprehended by the IDF months ago, but played dead and was able to flee at the time.

The latest rocket fire came shortly after final election results were released, in which the right-wing won 64 Knesset seats, all but ensuring that Benjamin Netanyahu will once again be the prime minister.

Source: (This article was originally published by Ynetnews on November 3, 2022. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Israel Defense Forces/commons.wikimedia.org

Photo License: Wikimedia

Prayer Focus
Pray that all rockets from Gaza will have the same success rate as these fired by PIJ, and cry out to God that this will not mark the start of another spate of rocket attacks on innocent civilians living in the Gaza envelope.

Scripture

LORD, how they have increased who trouble me! Many are they who rise up against me. Many are they who say of me, “There is no help for him in God.” But You, O LORD, are a shield for me, my glory and the One who lifts up my head.


- Psalm 3:1–3

Energean Announces New Gas Discovery off Israeli Coast

by JNS

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A map of the “Olympus Area” in Israel’s Exclusive Economic Zone

Tuesday, 8 November 2022 | Energean plc announced on Monday the discovery of a commercially viable deposit of natural gas, containing an estimated 13 billion cubic meters (bcm), at its Zeus-01 drilling site located off Israel’s coast, the company said in a statement.

A post-well analysis of the find is currently being conducted.

The statement added that an audit of Energean’s adjacent Athena field had upgraded reserves by 3bcm to 14.75bcm, following post-well studies of drilling data.

“The results from the Zeus well and the Athena post-well analysis provide Energean with additional confidence about the volumes and commerciality of the Olympus area, and the company is now progressing its field development plan,” said the statement.

The “Olympus area” is located between the Karish and Tanin fields in Israel’s exclusive economic zone.

For his part, Energean CEO Mathios Rigas said: “Following the start of production from our Karish reservoir last week, I am pleased that our drilling program, which has now delivered five successful wells from five, continues to deliver value, ensuring security of supply and energy competition across the region.

“We are evaluating a number of potential commercialization options for the Olympus area that leverage both new and our existing unique [Mediterranean Sea]-based infrastructure, and we expect to commit to a development concept in [the first quarter of] 2023,” Rigas continued.

The British-Greek hydrocarbon exploration and production company announced in late October that it had begun extracting natural gas from Karish, located off the coast of Haifa. At the time, Energean described the development as a significant milestone in promoting a vision of a competitive Israeli gas market and increasing the country’s energy security and independence.

A day later, Israeli and Lebanese leaders formalized a United States-mediated agreement that demarcates the maritime border between the two enemy states.

Source:   (This article was originally published by the Jewish News Syndicate on November 7, 2022. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Energean/jns.org

Prayer Focus
Praise the Lord that the number of Israel’s commercially viable natural gas deposits continues to expand. Pray that plans for development will move ahead quickly, ensuring energy independence for Israel and natural gas supplies for surrounding nations.

Scripture

The LORD will open to you His good treasure.


- Deuteronomy 28:12a

Solar Energy for Desalinated Water: Israel, Jordan, UAE Ink New Agreement

by Kate Norman

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A desalination plant in Hadera, Israel

Thursday, 10 November 2022 | Israel signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) yesterday with Jordan and the United Arab Emirates [UAE] to progress a year-old agreement to provide Israel with clean energy and Jordan with water.

The three nations signed the agreement yesterday at the COP27 climate conference in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt. A previous MOU declaring intent was signed last year at COP26 in Scotland, and the current agreement states that the countries will continue “engaging to develop the necessary implements in plans in time for COP28,” the Times of Israel reported.

The agreement will see Israel construct a desalination plant on the Mediterranean coast from which parched Jordan can purchase more water. Jordan, in return, will build a solar field in its desert to provide Israel with clean energy. A firm from the UAE will build the solar field in the Hashemite kingdom, the Times of Israel reported.

The solar plant in Jordan will have a 600 MW storage capacity, and the desalination plant in Israel is set to provide Jordan with 200 million cubic meters of water each year.

The MOU declared that the water and energy projects have been undergoing feasibility studies, according to the Times of Israel, and that they show “positive potential prospects.”

The deal was brokered by the UAE and the US and is a byproduct of the 2020 Abraham Accords in which the UAE and Bahrain normalized ties with Israel, following Egypt in 1979 and Jordan in 1994.

Outgoing Regional Cooperation Minister Esawi Frej signed the MOU on behalf of the Jewish state, while Jordanian minister of water and irrigation, Mohammad Al Najjar, signed for the Hashemite kingdom. Emirati Climate Change and Environment Minister Mariam Al Mheiri signed for the UAE. US climate envoy John Kerry was also present at the signing.

Frej told the Jerusalem Post that the outgoing government is passing down to the incoming one “a legacy of cross-border cooperation that creates hope for the whole region, with states working together to advance the optimal use of natural resources.

“This legacy of action proves the power of peace,” Frej added.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, November 12, 2022)

Photo Credit: einat Solomon/commons.wikimedia.org

Photo License: Wikimedia

Prayer Focus
Praise the Lord for this “legacy of cross-border cooperation that creates hope for the whole region, with states working together to advance the optimal use of natural resources.” Pray that cooperative efforts such as this will be the foundation on which peace will be built.

Scripture

The LORD brings the counsel of the nations to nothing; He makes the plans of the peoples of no effect. Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD, the people He has chosen as His own inheritance. Our soul waits for the LORD; He is our help and our shield.


- Psalm 33:10, 12, 20

Premature Syrian Baby Survives Emergency Surgery in Israel

by JNS

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Johnny Yusuf and his caretakers at Schneider Children’s Medical Center

Wednesday, 9 November 2022 | Johnny Yusuf, two weeks old, is a member of triplets born to a Syrian refugee family in Cyprus. He was born weighing only 1.5 kilograms (3.3 lbs.) and diagnosed with a life-threatening congestive heart defect, necessitating an emergency operation unavailable in Cyprus.

Yusuf required specialized care to survive and was flown to Israel in a coordinated effort.

“Johnny’s story is unique because he’s both very small and required surgery immediately,” said an Israeli official, reported Ynet.

A logistically and diplomatically complex medical operation in Israel saved his life, it was revealed on Tuesday.

As Johnny’s condition deteriorated, the Cypriot Health Ministry contacted Professor Einat Birk, director of the Institute of Cardiology at Schneider Children’s Medical Center in Petah Tikva, who advised that he be immediately flown to Israel for treatment.

Israel’s Foreign Ministry and its embassy in Cyprus stepped in to secure the necessary permits for the baby’s flight to Israel because he was a citizen of Syria.

Source: (This article was originally published by Jewish News Syndicate on November 8, 2022. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Schneider Children's Medical Center/jns.org

Prayer Focus
Praise God for the opportunity for Israel to again be a light to the nations and an example of loving not just your neighbor but your enemies as well. Pray for Johnny Yusuf as he faces a difficult recovery and ask the Lord that this story may help many to recognize that Israel is a righteous and peace-loving nation.

Scripture

Indeed He says “It is too small a thing that You should be My Servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved ones of Israel; I will also give You as a light to the Gentiles, that You should be My salvation to the ends of the earth.”


- Isaiah 49:6