Israeli-Arab captain of women’s basketball team

Shahd Abboud, who plays for the Hapoel Petah Tikvah women’s basketball team in Israel, opened the 2018/19 season as their new captain, making history as the first female Arab captain of a professional Israeli basketball team.

Bahrain invites Startup Nation Minister

Israel’s Economy Minister Eli Cohen has received an invitation from Bahrain to participate in its “Startup Nations Ministerial” - an international high-tech conference. Cohen will join global leaders aiming to boost bilateral technology initiatives and partner on policy initiatives.

Five new ambassadors

Israeli President Reuven Rivlin received diplomatic credentials from the new Ambassadors to the State of Israel of Croatia, Jordan, Czech Republic, Egypt and Mongolia.

Trade with Arab states

Despite lack of diplomatic relations, trade between Israel and Morocco was worth $37 million in 2017 ($149 million since 2014). Israeli drip irrigation specialist Netafim even setup a $2.9m subsidiary in Morocco last year, having operated there unofficially since 1994. Opportunities abound!

Friendship born on the soccer field

Nice story about Motke (“Berko”) Berkowitz and Mohammed Einan who have been friends for over sixty years, having played on Hapoel Nahariya’s soccer team in the 1950s and 1960s. Each week, Berko drives from Shavei Zion to the coastal village of Mazra’a to have coffee with Einan.

New Israeli town to support special needs kids

I reported previously about the new community named “Daniel” being built in the Negev that will provide home care for children (mainly Bedouin) with severe medical and therapeutic needs. Here is a much more detailed article on the new town and its aims.

Recycling fair funds special needs program

Israeli mum Ayelet Sanens launched the Ashdod Environmental Preservation and Recycling Fair. Toys, cosmetics, costume jewelry, clothing, household items etc. were sold to raise funds for Israeli charity Ezer Mizion’s special summer program for special needs children in Ashdod.

In their shoes

The Israeli charity In Their Shoes (ITS) trains caregivers to better serve patients with compassion. ITS’ Virtual Dementia Tour allows participants to feel the effects of dementia - hence “In Their Shoes”. ITS also conducts the Music and Memory Program for residents in nursing homes.

Trade route discussions in Oman

Following on from PM Netanyahu’s historic visit, Israel’s transport and intelligence minister, Yisrael Katz, visited the Arab Gulf state of Oman to discuss “Tracks for regional peace” - his revolutionary proposal for a new system of shipping by sea and rail to and from the Middle East.  And even the BBC can no longer ignore Israel’s warming ties with Arab countries.

Saving the coral in Palau

I reported previously that to save their coral reefs, Hawaii had banned sunscreen ingredient BP-3 thanks to Ben-Gurion University research. The Pacific island of Palau has now done likewise – although reports by the BBC and New York Times do not credit the Israeli scientists.