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Berlin - A body of 22-year-old Israeli found with signs of severe violence

According to a report in the German newspaper "Bild", the young man's body, among his things is an Israeli passport, was found by passers by, near an abandoned church. Due to the state of the body, It was not possible to determine with certainty the identity of the victim. Israeli Foreign Ministry checks the report.

Source involved in the details of the investigation said that "the victim's face is severely damaged, it has not yet been possible to establish identity with certainty. It is not possible make a match between him and the image shown in the passport." The body was discovered by passers by on Sunday, near the abandoned Franciscan church near the Alexanderplatz square.

New Study on the Israeli-American Community: 17% of the Children of Israelis in America for Over a Decade are Intermarried

The first study of its kind released by the Israeli American Council (IAC) surveyed almost 1,600 across 40 states.

New York, NY,  17% of the children of Israeli Jews who have lived in the United States for over a decade have married non-Jews. The number is higher than their parents’ generation, which has an intermarriage rate of 8%, according to a new study released today by the Israeli-American Council (IAC). The overall intermarriage rate of American Jews is at 58%.

The first of its kind survey on the Israeli-American community “Israelis and Israeli-Americans Living in the United States; Perceptions, Attitudes and Behavior” surveyed almost 1,660 Israelis in 40 states. It divided them into two groups: those who have lived in the United States for less than ten years and those who have lived here for over a decade in an effort to measure changes in attitudes and lifestyle over time. It was conducted by Midgam, a leading polling company in Israel, with the help of Israel’s Ministry of Aliyah and Immigrant Absorption (immigration ministry), the IAC, and several other Israeli-American organizations.

The study also finds that among those in both groups who attend synagogue (around half of the Israeli-American community surveyed) about 44% go to Orthodox synagogues. But among others that attend non-Orthodox synagogues, 24% of those who have lived here less than ten years attend Conservative synagogues and 22% attend Reform congregations. For those who have lived in the U.S. over ten years and attend a synagogue, 33% go to Conservative synagogues and 17% attend Reform.

According to the survey, about 51% of Israelis living in the U.S. for less than ten years socialize mostly with other Israelis who live here, while for those who have been living in the U.S. over ten years the number drops to 33%, indicating greater integration with the American society the longer they live in the U.S.

The Israeli American Council (IAC) commissioned the survey to examine how Israeli residents of the United States feel in terms of their connection to Judaism and Israel and how those bonds and accompanying behaviors might shift over time.

“The purpose of the survey was to deepen our understanding of the landscape of today’s Israeli-American communities so that we can better provide services they need to fulfill our mission of strengthening the Jewish identity of the next generation and building bridges to the Jewish American community. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first survey of the Israeli-American community nationwide that has ever been conducted,” said Shawn Evenhaim, Chairman of the Israeli-American Council.

When asked about the enrollment of their children in Jewish day schools, 53% of those polled in both groups responded that they do not send any of their children to Jewish day schools or preschools. 29% of those who have been here for less than ten years do so for all their children; as do 32% percent of those who have lived in the U.S. for over a decade.

Demographics of the Israeli-American community were also measured in the survey. It found that on average about 20% of Israelis in the U.S. surveyed are between the ages of 16 and 34, 44% are between 35 and 44, 15% are between the ages of 45-64, and 11% are above the age of 65.

According to Midgam, before this survey there was no significant data on Israelis who live in the U.S. The study is not conclusively representative, but because it surveyed a significant number of Israeli-Americans, it does give a good sense of community norms and trends.

“It is the first significant step to learn about tendencies of the community as a whole,” said Dr. Mina Tzemach, Migdam’s lead pollster. “The bottom line is that the results might not be perfect, but the survey presents for the first time a picture of this community.”


Netanyahu: Peace Talks with Palestinians Will Be Tough


U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Friday that some details were still being worked out but that if all goes well, Palestinian and Israeli officials would travel to Washington for initial talks

VOA News

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has assured his Cabinet that any results from resumed negotiations with the Palestinians will be put to a national referendum.

His comment Sunday follows a U.S. brokered agreement to restart long-stalled peace talks between the two sides. Netanyahu told his ministers the process will not be easy, but that Israel's approach will be sincere. He said he hopes the talks will be handled responsibly and practically.

The last direct talks collapsed in 2010. Borders, refugees, security, Jewish settlements and Jerusalem are among the difficult issues that have not been resolved.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Friday that some details were still being worked out but that if all goes well, Palestinian and Israeli officials would travel to Washington for initial talks within the next week or two.

Kerry announced the agreement for resuming negotiations after meeting with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas several times during a four-day visit to Jordan.

White House officials said President Barack Obama spoke by phone with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday to ask him to work with Kerry to "resume negotiations with the Palestinians as soon as possible."

Israeli officials said Saturday that they would release a "limited" number of Palestinian prisoners as a gesture for resuming talks, but have not given further details.


Israeli ice device destroys benign breast tumors in minutes

  • Published in Health


Biomedical company IceCure offers women a quick, scar-free and virtually painless option for freezing fibrous breast growths out of existence.


By Avigayil Kadesh
An Israeli product that gives benign breast tumors the cold shoulder is launching in US medical offices and hospitals.
Last December, the US Food and Drug Administration cleared IceSense3, a device made by IceCure Medical to vanquish fibroadenoma tumors by freezing them in a minimally invasive procedure. Two months later, the biomedical firm went public on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, raising $10.5 million in its initial public offering.
CEO Hezi Himelfarb explains that during an ultrasound-guided procedure, the IceSense3 probe penetrates the tumor and then destroys it cryogenically - engulfing it with ice. The entire process takes about five minutes, and the woman won't have scarring or recovery downtime. "She can get right up and go to work," he says.
Headquartered in Caesarea on the Mediterranean coast of Israel, IceCure is opening an office in the US Midwest this spring. The plan is to funnel most of its investment funds into marketing, sales and distribution in the United States, where the device is already in use at several facilities.
An improvement over existing options
"IceSense3 is not the first product in the world for this application," says Himelfarb. A similar device is made by the American company Sanarus. However, the Israeli model offers clear advantages over its competitor, he insists.
The Sanarus needle penetrates beyond the lesion since the active freezing area does not reach its tip. That limits the cases in which it can be used because of the potential for hitting healthy tissue. No such limitations hold back IceSense3, whose advanced needle technology doesn't require reaching past the tumor.
Also, says Himelfarb, the Sanarus needle, handle and tube connecting the device to the operating console all get thrown away after every procedure. With IceSense3, only the needle is disposable. This results in much lower cost and environmental impact. The handle has controls integrated into it, allowing the physician to perform the procedure solo, whereas the Sanarus device requires a second person to operate the touch screen. "Since our system is newer and the graphical user interface is more advanced, we provide the surgeon with flexibility in making decisions before and during the procedure," says Himelfarb.
Why remove a benign tumor?
Himelfarb explains that before the advent of a cryogenic solution, women with fibrous breast tumors - the majority of whom are between 17 and 30 years old - could either keep monitoring them or have them surgically removed.

Why treat it if it's benign? "I don't know any woman who wants to get up every morning and feel a lump in her breast even if she knows it was diagnosed as benign," Himelfarb answers. "It creates anxiety because it might potentially hide other tumors, and it is preferable to get rid of it."
Women can have the cryoablation procedure done in the doctor's office, private clinic or hospital breast center, freeing up operating rooms for more complicated (and profitable) procedures. It is reimbursable for half the amount of surgery, which saves money for insurers.
Best of all for patients, it is virtually painless. A local anesthetic is administered before the needle goes in, but after that the freezing itself numbs the area. "The patient feels no pain and doesn't require post-treatment of any kind," says Himelfarb. The needle is similar to the kind she would already have seen when her tumor was biopsied, he adds.
Graduate of a biotech incubator
IceCure began in 2006 as part of the Naiot Venture Accelerator in Yokneam, an incubator for IT and life science startups. Co-founded by cryogenics expert Dr. Alex Levin and businessman Didier Toubia after many consultations with physicians, IceCure developed its product based on a technology Levin had patented in 2002.
"One of our original investors is the Bridge Fund in Cleveland, Ohio, which is helping us open doors in America," says Himelfarb. The company is concentrating only on the vast US market but will also seek approval from Israel's Ministry of Health. "In the US, there is already existing reimbursement and coverage, while in other countries we'd need to invest more in clinical trials," he says.
Himelfarb is an electronics engineer who came to IceCure after 28 years in the industry with Israeli companies such as Medtronic and Remon Medical Technologies, which was sold three years ago to Boston Scientific. He says that IceCure's research and development activities in Israel are currently focused on a newer generation of IceSense as well as a future device for treating uterine fibroids.

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