Gunmen attack Haniyeh convoy
Palestinian gunmen on Friday opened fire on Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh’s convoy, destroying one vehicle in a burst of flames in the latest violence between the rival Fatah and Hamas movements. Nobody was injured.
The attack came shortly after Haniyeh, of Hamas, brushed off threats by President Mahmoud Abbas, of Fatah, to dismiss the Hamas-led Cabinet. Haniyeh travels in a convoy of more than 10 vehicles and was believed to be about a quarter-mile away at the time of the shooting.
Hamas officials accused Fatah-affiliated gunmen of carrying out the attack. Fatah denied involvement.
U.N. suspending Sudan refugee aid
The United Nations refugee agency said Friday it had received reports of at least 38 civilians killed in attacks in southern Sudan and was suspending its operation helping Sudanese refugees return from neighboring Uganda.
Ron Redmond, spokesman for U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres, said the reports indicated “unknown gunmen” had killed the civilians in a string of attacks.
Redmond said the refugee body will monitor the situation closely before resuming the repatriation convoys, which already have helped 14,000 south Sudanese return from neighboring countries since last year’s peace deal ended two decades of civil war.
The south Sudan conflict was separate from the Darfur conflict in western Sudan, where more than 200,000 people have been killed and 2.5 million displaced since 2003.
Jews install Progressive rabbi
A Polish Jewish community installed its first Progressive rabbi since World War II on Friday in a ceremony filled with lively music and solemn remembrance of those who perished in the Holocaust.
The arrival of Rabbi Burt Schuman, a New Yorker with Polish roots, represents another milestone in the revival of the Jewish life nearly extinguished by Adolf Hitler.
The Progressive movement, a major branch of Judaism, is equivalent to the Reform movement in North America. The Progressive community’s members said Schuman would help them revive the branch of Judaism that flourished alongside Orthodox Judaism in Poland before the Holocaust.