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HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, JULY 28, 2017 PAGE 13A Jared Kushner says Russia charges 'ridicule' Trump voters WASHINGTON (JTA)--In a rare public statement, Jared Kushner insisted he did not collude with Russia and said the query into suspicions of a relationship between Russia and Donald Trump's presi- dential election campaign "ridiculed" Trump voters. "Let me very clear, I did not collude with Russia, nor did I know of anyone else in the campaign who did so," Kush- ner, Trump's son-in-law and a top aide, said Monday, reading a prepared statement after appearing before the Senate Intelligence Committee in a closed session. Kushner is in the spotlight because of revelations in re- cent weeks that he attended a June 9, 2016, meeting organized by his brother-in- law, Donald Trump Jr., who took the meeting believing it would be with a Russian government lawyer who had incriminating intelligence on Trump's rival, Hillary Clinton. Also under review are reports that Kushner, tike his father-in-law in the real estate business, owes money to Russian lenders. "I had no improper con- tacts," he said. "I have not relied on Russian funds for my businesses and I have been fully transparent in providing all requested information." Kushner suggested the investigation was a means of undercutting Trump's election. "Donald Trump had a bet5 ter message and ran a smarter campaign, and that is why he won," Kushner said. "Sug- gesting otherwise ridicules those who voted for him." Kushner said he remained committed to his work, Citing among his many assignments bringing peace to the Middle East. "I am so grateful for the op- portunity to work on impor- tant matters such as Middle East peace and reinvigorating America's innovative spirit," he said. Israeli Embassy guard in Jordan kills assail- ant, bystander after being stabbed with screwdriver (JTA)--An Israeli Embassy guard in Amman, Jordan, killed his 17-year-old assail- ant and a bystander after being stabbed in the chest with a screwdriver. The attacker reportedly en- tered the home of an embassy official on Sunday evening to replace the furniture when he saw the security guard and stabbed him. The guard then pulled out his firearm and shot the attacker in the chest. Reports said the owner of the residential building used by the embassy was hit with a stray bullet and killed. Jordanian police are de- manding to question the guard, while relatives of the stabber are calling for the death penalty. The Israeli Embassy has refused to release the guard to the Jordanians for question- ing, saying he has immunity. Jordan, meanwhile, refuses to allow the guard to leave the country. The Israeli diplomatic team remains confined to the embassy compound, despite plans to evacuate the embassy staff and return them to Is- rael, Haaretz reported. The Foreign Ministry told the Israeli media that it con- siders the incident to be a ter- ror attack and related to the current Temple Mount crisis. The father of the teen assailant reportedly told a Jordanian television station that he does not believe his son intended to attack an Israeli. However, he also said, "I consider my son to be a martyr for Allah." Thousands of Jordanians demonstrated against Israel in Amman on Friday over the installation of metal detec- tors at the Temple Mount. Among the chants heard at the demonstration was "How beautiful it is to kill soldiers in Jerusalem," Ynet reported. The Jordan-based Islamic Waqf is the administrator of the Temple Mount. Jordan allows Israeli Embassy employees, including guard who killed attacker, to re- turn to Israel JERUSALEM (JTA)--The members of Israel's diplo- matic mission in Amman, Jordan, including a security guard who shot and killed histeenage assailant and a bystander, are back in Israel. The embassy employees, who had been confined to the embassy compound all day Monday following the stab- bing attack Sunday evening by a 17-year-old and subse- quent shooting, returned late Monday through the Allenby Bridge. In a statement issued shortly after i 1 ~a!m. M0nday~ the Israeli Prime Minister's Office said their return "was made possible by the close cooperation that took place in the last 24 hours between Israel and Jordan." The head of the Israel Se- curity Agency, or Shin Bet, Nadav Argaman, traveled Monday to Jordan in an effort to diffuse the crisis. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Jordan's King Abdullah spoke that afternoon by telephone. Abdullah told Netanyahu to remove the metal detectors placed at the entrances to the Temple Mount used by Muslim worshippers, put into place after three Arab-Israelis killed two Druze-Israeli police officers in a July 14 terrorist attack near the Al- Aqsa mosque. Israel's Security Cabinet met for several hours Monday evening in an effort to resolve the crisis over security mea- sures on the Temple Mount and the escalating diplomatic crisis with Jordan. In the attack Sunday, the assailant entered a residential building occupied by the embassy to install furniture and stabbed the Israeli guard with a screwdriver. The guard shot and killed the assailant. The building's owner, who was standing nearby, was killed after being hit by a stray bullet. Jordanian police had de- manded to question the guard, while relatives of the stabber called for the death penalty. The embassy refused to turn the guard over to the Jordanians for questioning, saying he had immunity. Jordanian security forces reportedly held mobs of pro- testers who had gathered at the embassy at bay following the incident. The Israeli media reported that the government is con- sidering removing the metal detectors and replacing them with high-tech security cam- eras, and is aiming to make the changes before Friday, the busiest day at the site for Muslim prayers. The cameras reportedly would be located a" distance away from the gates into the site, so as not to offend the worshippers, who have been protesting the metal detec- tors by refusing to enter the sites and holding worship ser- vices at the gates, leading to clashes with Israeli security forces that have killed at least five Muslims. BDS activists reportedly prevented from board- ing flight to Israel (JTA)--Five members of an interfaith delegation to Israel were prevented from boarding their flight from Washington, D.C., due to their activism on behalf of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement. The Jewish Voice for Peace organization said in a state- ment Monday that the delega- tion tried to check into its Lufthansa flight at Dulles International Airport, only to be told that the Israeli government had ordered the airline not to let the five pas- sengers aboard. In March, the Israeli parlia- ment, or Knesset, amended the Law of Entry to prevent leaders of the BDS movement from being allowed into Is- rael. The amendment applies to organizations that take consistent and significant action against Israel through BDS, as well as the leadership and senior activists of those groups. Lufthansa spokesman Tal Muscal confirmed that the delegation members were not allowed to fly per the Israeli government's request. Luf- thansa was not made aware of the reason for the order. Muscal said the airline must obey government re- quests like these to block passengers from boarding flights. "We don't know who these people are," Muscal told JTA. "We have no information as to why the Israeli government does not want them to enter. We simply have to abide by the rules and regulations of every country in which we operate." The Israeli Prime Minis- ter's Office declined to com- ment on the report. Three of the activists were from JVP, including a rabbi. The other two delegation members prevented from boarding the flight were Rick Ufford Chase of the Presby- terian Peace Fellowship in Rockland County, New York, and Shakeel Syed, a national board memberwithAmerican Muslims for Palestine in Los Angeles. The other 18 participants with the Interfaith Network for Justice in Palestine delega- tion arrived Monday morning in Israel and were allowed to enter after several hours of detention and questioning, according to JVE JVP states on its website that it supports boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel. "Israel denied me the abil- ity to travel there because of my work for justice for Palestinians, even though I'm Jewish and a rabbi," Rabbi Alissa Wise said in the JVP statement. "I'm heartbroken and outraged. This is yet another demonstration that democracy and tolerance in Israel only extends to those who fall in line with its in- creasingly repressive policies against Palestinians. Syed said in the statement that he had his boarding pass in hand when "the Lufthansa representative informed me that they had a direct order from 'Israeli immigration authorities' to not allow us to board the plane. Further- more, they refused to even show us the Israeli order." JVP said it is believed to be the first time that the amend- ment has been enforced before passengers boarded their flights to Israel and the first time that Israel has denied entry to Jews, includ- ing a rabbi, for their support of BDS. Following the passage of the Entry Law amendment, several groups that promote BDS planned to organize delegations to come to Israel and test the boundaries of the amendment. An anti-BDS bill making its way through Congress would expand existing law that bans boycotts imposed by foreign governments to include those imposed by international organizations like the European Union and the United Nations. Second anti.Israel protest staged outside Istanbul synagogue (JTA)--For the second time in less than a week, pro- testers demonstrated against Israel outside a synagogue in Istanbul over Israel's decision to put up metal detectors at the entrance :o the Temple Mount. The latest incident re- ported in the ~urkish media occurred Satlrday outside the Ahrida Syngogue on the European side)f the Turkish capital, in the north of the neighborhood~f Fatih, which is a strongholdaf the Muslim Brotherhood nd other Is- lamist movemnts in Turkey. Respondingo the Turkish Jewish commuity's protests, Turkish Prime linister Binali Ylldlnm said i a statement Sunday to th media that while "limitig Muslims' access to Al-qsa mosque for whatever'eason is an unacceptable nistake that Turkey expect~[srael to undo immediately,"the Turkish government "oes not agree with actions ations outside places of woraip of Jewish citizens." Ylldlrlm sait the govern- ment "expectsm all citizens exercise self r.straint." The short statement did not say what would h~pen to those who do live up :o the govern- ment's expectation. Israel installed the security devices at the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, at the site the Muslims call Haram al Sharif, in response to a July 14 ter- rorist attack near theAI-Aqsa mosque that killed two Israeli police officers. At the Ahrida Synagogue, which is one of the country's oldest, at least 29 men gath- ered carrying signs with anti- Israel slogans and a cardboard structure meant to symbolize an X-ray machine, the Haber- ler news website reported. On Thursday, protesters showed up at the Neve Shalom synagogue in Istanbul, where they kicked the front door and hurled objects at it. Leaders of Turkish Jews condemned the targeting of synagogues to protest Israel's actions. Following the July 14 attack, Israel temporarily limited ac- cess to the holy site for men under 50 and placed metal detectors at the entrance to the site. Synagogues, which have been targeted by Islamists and other terrorists in Tur- key in the past, are heavily guarded in Istanbul by police. To enter Istanbul's main synagogues, including Neve Shalom, visitors must obtain the permission of the Jewish community prior to arriving there. The fact that demon- strators were able to gather outside the synagogues and stage protests there is highly unusual for Istanbul. In the aftermath of the officers' slaying, in which the three Arab-Israeli terrorists were shot dead by police, several Palestinians died in riots over the past week and three Jews were murdered in the West Bank settlement of Halamish inside their home by a Palestinian terrorist. On Sunday, a security of- ricer at the Israeli Embassy in Aman, Jordan, killed a man that Israel's Foreign Ministry said had come to carry out a terrorist attack at the compound Approximately 30 people were besieged in the embassy on Monday due to the Jordanian authorities' desire to detain and ques- tion embassy staff, who have diplomatic immunity under international treaties. Jason Greenblatt, Trump's envoy, heads to Israel to help reduce Temple Mount tensions WASHINGTON (JTA)-- Jason Greenblatt, President Donald Trump's special envoy for international relations, is headed to Israel in a bid to help reduce tensions as Jerusalem's Temple Mount remains a flashpoint and after a Palestinian terrorist killed three Israelis from the same family in a West Bank stabbing attack. "President Trump and his administration are closely following unfolding events in the region," a senior ad- ministration official told JTA on Sunday night, speaking on condition of anonymity and reporting Greenblatt's departure. "The United States utterly condemns the recent terror- ist violence, including the horrific attack Friday night that killed three people at their Shabbat dinner table in Halamish, and sends condo- lences to the families of the innocentvictims," the official said. "We are engaged in discussions with the relevant parties and are committed to finding a resolution to the ongoing security issues." Greenblatt would closely coordinate with the National Security Council and with Jared Kushner, Trump's son-in-law who is a top aide and is charged with renew- ing Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, the official said. Yosef Salomon, 70, and his children Chaya, 46, and Elad, 36, were killed by a 19-year- old Palestinian attacker from a nearby village who entered the home in the Halamish settlement and began stab- bing the family members. They had gathered at the Salomon home to celebrate the birth of a baby to another of the senior Salomon's sons. His wife, Tovah, 68, was in- jured in the attack. Thousands attended the funerals on Sunday afternoon at the cemetery in the central Israeli city of Modiin. The area around the Tem- ple Mount, the holiest site in Judaism and also the location of the Haram A-Sharif, the third holiest site in Islam, has been riven with tensions since July 14 when three Arab-Israelis shot and killed two Israeli police officers at the holy site before they were shot to death. Israeli authorities installed metal detectors at the site in the wake of the attack and since then, Muslims have refused to enter the Temple Mount, instead praying out- side of its gates, leading to clashes and the deaths of at least five Palestinians in recent days. Arab-Israeli man stabbed by Palestinian assailant JERUSALEM (JTA)--An Arab-Israeli man was stabbed several times in the neck by a Palestinian assailant in the central Israel city of Petach Tikvah. The 32-year-old victim in the Monday morning attack was taken to a local hospital with moderate wounds, Israel Police said. He is an Egged bus driver who was on a break getting a cup of coffee. Civilian bystanders stopped the attacker, 21, from the West Bank Palestinian city of Qalqilya and in Israel il- legally, while he was fleeing the scene and wrestled him to the ground, according to the Israel Police. He was arrested and taken for questioning. The attacker, who has not been named, was previously jailed in Israel for activity against the state, The Times of Israel reported, citing the Israel Security Agency, or Shin Bet. Israel Police said they are treating the incident as a nationalistic attack on an Israeli target. The Palestinian assailant told investigators that "I did it for AI Aqsa," accord- ing to reports, referring to the mosque on the Temple Mount, or what the Muslims call Haram al Sharif. There have been several terror attacks by Palestinians and Arabs against Israeli tar- gets since the July 14 attack on the Temple Mount that left two Druze-Israeli security guards dead and led to the in- stallation of metal detectors at Muslim entrances to the holy site. Muslims have been killed in clashes with Israeli police over the installation of the security devices. Israeli tank fires on Hamas post in Gaza in retaliatory strike JERUSALEM (JTA)--An Israeli army tank attacked a Hamas post in the southern Gaza Strip in response to rockets fired on southern Israel. JTA on page 14A