Israel Begins Human Trials for Coronavirus Vaccine; Gantz, Bennett Meet About Triggering New Elections; Anti-Netanyahu Protests Continue

Israel has begun human trials on its own vaccine for the coronavirus. Two groups of volunteers at two separate hospitals have started. Another 80 volunteers are set to join it these first volunteers remain in good health. Reported by Fox News. Read more…

Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz and Yamina Party leader Naftali Bennett reportedly met to discuss the possibility of triggering early elections. Reports suggest one reason for the meeting was Gantz’s belief that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would not honor his promise to cede the premiership to Gantz in November 2021. Gantz is reportedly frustrated by delays in finalizing a state budget for this year and the next. Reported by The Times of Israel. Read more…

Meanwhile, protests in Israel against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu continue, now with added chants of “Trump’s out and Bibi’s next.” However, demonstrations in Jerusalem had lower turnout than usual. Many of the protesters were celebrating Trump’s perceived loss in the election. One protester, Shani Weissman, said that “I feel that to truly make progress with the peace and negotiation with the Palestinians, which is the most important path of peace, we need a United States that’s more neutral, that’s more a bridge between us and the Palestinians.” Reported by The Times of Israel. Read more… And Facebook reported that it had removed a network of Facebook and Instagram accounts involved in a deception campaign targeting Israelis. The posts included “anti-Prime Minister Netanyahu protests in Israel, criticism of his policies and response to the pandemic” material and were tied to individuals associated with EITRC, a Tehran-based IT company. Reported by The Times of Israel. Read more…