United Arab Emirates Astronaut Brings Israeli Flag to Space
United Arab Emirates (UAE) astronaut Hazzaa al-Mansoori recently revealed that he had brought an Israeli flag to space in 2019. It was not until 2020—when Israel and the United Arab Emirates signed the Abraham Accords—that ties between the two countries were established. Al-Mansoori presented the flag to the Israeli pavilion at the World Expo in Dubai. He said, “I am happy to be here and present this Israeli flag to the people here and the Israeli public. I took this flag with me two years ago on my first mission as an Emirati astronaut and this is my gift to all Israelis.” Al-Mansoori is planning to visit Israel and wants to see the Ilan Ramon space museum in Mitzpe Ramon.
Praise the Lord for the deepening ties between Israel and the United Arab Emirates!
Defense Minister Benny Gantz Meets with Mahmoud Abbas
A senior Israeli leader has met with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas inside
Israel for the first time in more than a decade. Defense Minister Benjamin “Benny” Gantz invited Abbas to his home in Rosh HaAyin, just thirty minutes east of Tel Aviv. The two talked about the Palestinian Authority’s spiraling financial crisis. Gantz agreed that Israel will loan the regime 100 million shekels (32 million dollars).
Israel will also legalize the status of 9,500 undocumented Palestinians and foreigners. The Israeli government led by Prime Minister Bennett wants to help the Palestinian Authority under Abbas’ leadership because the alternative would be an empowered Hamas government leading Gaza and the West Bank. “If the Palestinian Authority is stronger, Hamas will be weaker. When the Palestinian Authority has more ability to enforce order, there will be more security and our hand will be forced less,” Gantz said.
Please pray that the ties and trust between Gantz and Abbas will be strengthened.
Online Fraud Now Israel’s Top Form of Theft
In Israel, online money theft has become more lucrative for thieves than physical theft or drug trafficking. Authorities are having a hard time thwarting it and finding solutions, as the cases have increased tremendously in 2021. Evidence and location of the crime are difficult for the police to determine since it is internet-based. Moreover, much of the theft is done in other countries, but the money is brought to Israel (or vice-versa).
The two most common types of fraud are phishing and bogus forex exchange platforms. Phishing uses an ad, email, or text to trick people to click a link and fill in personal information. This response allows criminals access to their bank accounts, credit cards, or computer files. Foreign exchange (forex) websites, on the other hand, pose as legitimate banking services. They induce people to deposit money for investing, but then disappear with their money.
Please pray for the Israeli police and worldwide authorities to find solutions to online scams involving people’s money and identity.
Painting and Art Classes
On sunny winter days, Chosen People Ministries—Israel can have some outside classes. One of our teammates uses her gift of watercolor painting to gather and teach children how to engage their artistic skills and paint something beautiful. Through the lessons, she has them draw biblical pictures and then shares Bible stories with them. The parents love it, and the community appreciates her paintings as gifts.
Our team that works with Holocaust survivors also use special art projects. This ministry will gather the seniors and get their hands, brains, and hearts involved in learning and creating something they can take home and hang up or use. They love the projects the Chosen People Ministries—Israel team brings for them to do. What a wonderful way to bless the community, help people in practical ways, and learn more about the Lord through it!
Please pray that these groups feel the love of God and share it with their families and friends!