Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Charedi World

24 Cheshvan 5760 - November 3, 1999 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly








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Late News in Brief

by Yated Ne'eman Staff

Barak Suspends Permit for Terrorist

Prime Minister Ehud Barak has suspended the permission given just last week to Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP) leader Nayef Hawatmeh to enter the Palestinian-controlled areas.

Barak's decision came following an interview Hawatmeh gave to Qatar's al-Jazeera television, in which he declared that the "armed struggle is legitimate" as long as settlers remain on Arab land.

He also imposed conditions for his return, saying he insisted he be allowed to move freely throughout the territories and from the Palestinian areas abroad, and that his aides be allowed to travel with him.

Speaking to Reuters after he heard of the suspension, Hawatmeh both criticized Barak's decision and backtracked somewhat regarding his comments on armed struggle.

Citibank Comes to Israel

Citibank's first branch in Israel will open in Tel Aviv in the second quarter of next year, and provide banking services to business customers with a special emphasis on high tech companies.

The first branch will employ some 20 staff, and will be located in the vicinity of Salomon Smith Barney's office in Tel Aviv. The branch will offer the full range of banking services for business customers: deposits, credit and asset management. Salomon Smith Barney is a Citigroup subsidiary.

Citibank leaders assessed that other foreign banks would take their cue from them and open branches in Israel. "The more profitable we are here, the more banks will want to open branches here," a bank spokesman said. The spokesman added that the bank had not come under pressure from Arab countries against setting up a branch in Israel.

Citigroup has over 100 million customers all over the world and is the largest financial company.

Yaakov Frenkel, head of the Bank of Israel, said that the opening of a Citibank branch shows that the reforms in Israel's financial markets adopted over the past few years are on the right track.

Handicapped on Strike

The Histadrut Labor Union struck the national economy for one hour on Sunday noon, in solidarity with physically handicapped protesters. The strike included Bezeq, the Klalit Health Fund, the Ports Authority, the Electric Company, and others.

Negotiations between disabled persons representatives and Finance Ministry officials to end the three-week long protest of the handicapped resumed on Sunday afternoon.

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