UK architects rescind call for boycott of Israeli counterparts

RIBA LogoThe United Kingdom’s Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has rescinded a resolution passed earlier this year urging a ban of its Israeli counterpart following a fact-finding mission to the region, saying it had no business dealing with the matter in the first place, Architects’ Journal reported.

The motion passed in March by 23 votes to 16 had called on the International Union of Architects to suspend the Israeli Association of United Architects (IAUA) from membership until it refused to accept projects in the West Bank.

But two RIBA officials who traveled to the region in November and met with IAUA officials as well as members of the Association of Architects in Palestine came to the conclusion that “The RIBA motion was beyond the powers of council. It should not have come before the members of council. This is not the forum for these issues.”

Continue reading at the Times of Israel.

Clarification of Pastor Hagee’s Remarks at ZOA Dinner

After conversations with friends in the pro-Israel community, including Robert Sugarman and Malcolm Hoenlein of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, Pastor John Hagee has issued the following clarification of remarks he made to the Zionist Organization of America:

“The prepared text of my remarks before the Zionist Organization of America called President Obama one of the most “anti-Israel” presidents in U.S. history.  During my speech, I inadvertently called him one of the most “anti-Semitic” presidents in history.  Unfortunately, recent events have forced me to use both of these words — anti-Israel and anti-Semitic — with a frequency that I find distressing.”

“While I regret my misstatement, I stand behind my prepared remarks.  I am alarmed by the policies of this Administration and the contempt it has shown towards Israel’s democratically elected government.  I believe that those of us who love Israel must be aggressive in our criticism thereof.”

Israel nods in approval as Iran nuke talks extended but calls for toughening sanctions

Iran nuke mapNetanyahu says that as long as negotiations are ongoing, sanctions should be increased to force Tehran into a deal

Israel on Monday welcomed the extension of nuclear talks between Iran and the West. “No deal is better than a bad deal,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in an interview with the BBC. “The deal that Iran was pushing for was terrible. The deal would have left Iran with the ability to enrich uranium for an atom bomb while removing the sanctions.

Netanyahu made the comments after diplomats close to negotiations in Vienna said that the P5+1 nations — the US, Britain, France, China, Russia, plus Germany — had decided to extend talks with Iran until July 2015 after they apparently failed to come to terms hours ahead of a midnight deadline.

“The right deal that is needed is to dismantle Iran’s capacity to make atomic bombs and only then dismantle the sanctions,” the prime minister continued. “Since that’s not in the offing, this result is better. A lot better. I think Iran should not have any capacity to enrich. There is no right to enrich. What do you need to enrich uranium for if you are not developing an atomic bomb?”

Continue reading at the Times of Israel.