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Monday Evening News Briefs from Eretz Yisrael

The IDF Homefront Command conducted emergency siren testing in southern area municipalities at 4:30pm.

**Addressing an international forum of justices in Jerusalem, former President of the High Court Prof. Aaron Barak praised the court’s decision to open Highway 443 to PA (Palestinian Authority) motorists.

**Rock attacks against a vehicle near Dir Abu Meshal west of Ramallah. No injuries but there were reports of damage to a vehicle.

**Maccabi HMO in Betar Illit continues to cooperate with the city’s Hatzolah volunteers and this past shabbos, a visiting elderly man in his 70s was saved from death due to the efforts of a Maccabi physician who responded, Dr. Moshe Rav-Acha. Together with Hatzolah volunteers, they stabilized the patient, who was transported to Jerusalem’s Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital.

**Noam Shalit met on Monday with Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin, opposition leader Tzipi Livni, Deputy Foreign Minister Ayalon, and other officials as he continues lobbying on behalf of a prisoner exchange deal that will bring his son Gilad home.

**Chefs L’Mehadrin are what some call the new graduates from the Michlelet Ta’amim College, which is running courses for males and females in the chareidi community, certifying them as cooks.

**Two Arab youths were taken into custody at the Machpelah after it was determined they were concealing knives, which they admitted they were planning to use to stab soldiers or “settlers”. It was the second such incident in less than 24 hours.

**The union representing Defense Ministry employees have declared a ‘work dispute’ due to an unresolved labor issue. The declaration starts the countdown timer which permits a strike at the end of the two-week hiatus period.

**As expected, Kadima voted to prohibit MK Eli Aflalo to break away and launch his own party as he hoped to do.

**A firebomb was hurled at border police near Har Adar. No injuries.

**A farming tractor on Sunday afternoon tore through a number of communication cables in the Ganei Aviv area, resulting in serious delays in railway service nationwide.

**Tourism officials report a 33% decrease in the number of Israelis visiting Turkey in 2009.

13:49: A mortar shell fired from Gaza lands near Kerem Shalom. No injuries.

**16:31: Mortar shells fired from Gaza landed near Erez Crossing. No injuries.

**16:50: Mortar shells fired from Gaza landed near Erez Crossing again. No injuries.

**A Bat Yam motorist struck and injured a police volunteer manning a checkpoint in Bnei Brak, a male in his 60s. The driver fled the scene but was apprehended. The police volunteer was injured lightly.

**There was a 4% decline in requests for unemployment benefits in December 2009.

(Yechiel Spira – YWN Israel)

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