Tuesday, September 22nd 2020   |

International

Robert Lefkowitz shares in Nobel Prize

JTA) — Robert Lefkowitz, a Jewish physician and biochemist, won the Nobel Prize in chemistry with Brian Kobilka, a Stanford University researcher. Lefkowitz, 61, and Kobilka, 57, won for “groundbreaking discoveries that reveal the inner workings of an important family … of receptors: G-protein-coupled receptors,” a posting Wednesday on the website of the Nobel Prize stated.

Understanding how these receptors function helped further explain how cells could sense their environment,...

German cabinet backs measure on circumcision

BERLIN (JTA) — Germany’s cabinet approved a proposed law on circumcision that is welcomed by Jewish and Muslim groups.The law, which is subject to parliamentary debate, introduces restrictions on the practice of non-medical circumcision on male children with the aim of protecting religious freedom in light of recent attacks on the practice. A vote in the parliament, or Bundestag, is expected in the fall. The cabinet discussed the amendment on...

Limmud appoints new executive director, chair

(JTA) — Limmud, the international network of Jewish learning conferences, appointed a new director and a new chairman. Shelley Marsh, currently the director of informal education for the United Kingdom’s United Jewish Israel Appeal, will become Limmud’s executive director following Succot, according to a Limmud news release. Marsh succeeds Raymond Simonson, who ran Limmud for six years and is the CEO designate of the London Jewish Community Center.

Limmud is...

Finnish party plans new bill to ban circumcision

(JTA) — Finland’s third largest party, True Finns, has demanded a ban on the ritual circumcision of minors. In a debate held Sept. 26 at the Finnish parliament in Helsinki, Vesa-Matti Saarakkala, a lawmaker for True Finns, reiterated his calls in March to outlaw the practice in Finland.

Saarakkala, 28, said he would submit a bill proposing to criminalize ritual circumcision in boys younger than 15 years of age, according to...

At U.N. General Assembly, Iran is on the mind – again

By NEIL RUBIN

WASHINGTON (JTA) — At this year’s U.N. General Assembly, Iran’s push for nuclear weapons is the overwhelming international diplomacy priority for American Jewish groups — but it’s not the only one. The body’s 67th session, which opened Sept. 18, provides the opportunity for Jewish groups to meet with the retinue of presidents, foreign ministers and other policymakers who arrive in New York City for its opening session.

“Obviously...

Egypt charges eight over anti-Islam movie made in California

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Egypt charged seven Egyptian-born Coptic Christians living in the United States and an American pastor with insulting Islam. A public prosecutor in Cairo on Tuesday announced the charges over an anti-Muslim film made in California that insults the Prophet Muhammad, according to reports. A 14-minute trailer dubbed into Arabic surfaced last week on YouTube, sparking unrest throughout the Arab world and in Arab communities in other countries. The...

French Jewish communities condemns Muhammad cartoons

(JTA) — The president of the representative body of France’s Jewish communities condemned the new publication of caricatures of the Muslim Prophet Muhammad. The publication Wednesday of the caricatures in the French weekly Charlie Hebdo “in the current context” is “irresponsible,” Dr. Richard Prasquier, the president of the Jewish umbrella body CRIF, said in a statement.

The weekly published the caricatures in a defiant move that it said was meant to...

Grenade thrown in suburban Paris kosher market injures shopper

(JTA) — An explosion at a kosher grocery shop near Paris, reportedly caused by a grenade, damaged the store and injured a shopper, French police said. Police have not linked Wednesday afternoon’s attack to the release of caricatures hours earlier by a Paris weekly depicting the Muslim Prophet Muhammad, including one featuring a haredi Orthodox Jew and a religious Muslim.

The store in the Paris suburb of Sarcelles reportedly was...

In anti-Islam movie furor, fears that a filmmaker’s lies have legs

By JTA STAFF

NEW YORK (JTA) — There was no Israeli-American real estate developer named Sam Bacile, and the 100 Jews he claimed had financed his anti-Islam film were fictitious as well. Both fabrications were offered to the media apparently to hide the true identity of the Egyptian Christian from Southern California who has since been fingered as the main figure behind the film that sparked violence across the Muslim world.

...

Key figure in anti-Muslim movie taken in for questioning

(JTA) — An Egyptian Christian man who police say is one of the key figure behind the anti-Islam film “Innocence of Muslims” was taken in for questioning. Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, 55, was questioned near Los Angeles after being brought in Saturday morning by federal probation officers, The New York Times reported, but he was not placed under arrest.

Police reportedly may be investigating whether Nakoula uploaded the 14-minute movie trailer,...