News Briefs: Coral Used in Knee Replacement Surgery in Israel, Anti-Semitic Crimes Up in Germany, and More


Academic Organization Opposes BDS, Calls for Requirement Renouncement

The American Association of University Professors said Aug. 8 that it opposes the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement — as well as requirements that call for academics to renounce it, JTA reported.

The AAUP issued a statement that called on public universities to “stop requiring speakers and others to pledge that they do not now, nor will they in the future, endorse a specific political movement known as boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) with regard to Israel.”

“We oppose all academic boycotts, including an academic boycott of Israel, on the grounds that such boycotts violate the principles of academic freedom and the free exchange of ideas for which our organization has stood for over one hundred years,” the statement continued.

At least 17 states have passed legislation banning state-funded entities from doing business with those who boycott Israel. That, in turn, has increased the number of requirements for pledges to renounce BDS.

AAUP has chapters on more than 500 campuses and advocates for academic standards and freedoms.

American Rappers Quit Israeli Music Festival

Citing the “security situation,” American rappers Fat Joe and Tyga canceled their appearance at the Shaka music festival in Rishon Lezion, leading to the scrapping of the entire festival, reported.

The American rappers were slated to headline the festival on July 9 and were to be joined by Israeli hip-hop artists. Last year’s festival drew 15,000 fans.

Unhappy fans responded on social media, with many asking, “What security situation?”

Many musicians have been pressured by the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement to not perform in Israel, but it’s not clear if the cancellations are tied to that.

Coral Used in Knee Replacement Surgery in Israel

Doctors at Hadassah University Medical Center in Israel performed successful knee surgery using a coral-based implant an Israeli startup developed, the Jerusalem Post reported.

CartiHeal, a Kfar Saba-based company, created the implant, which is called Agili-C. The product is undergoing clinical studies and is being tested on patients worldwide.

“The need for an implant that leads to the regrowth of damaged cartilage is genuinely needed in the orthopedic world, and we hope that the [clinical] trail will succeed,” said Adi Friedman, the physician who performed the procedure, “and that the implant will be the breakthrough that we have been waiting for.”

Agili-C is made from aragonite, which is calcium carbonate derived from coral’s exoskeleton.

Anti-Semitic Crimes Up in Germany

Anti-Semitic crimes increased more than 10 percent in Germany in 2018’s first six months compared to a year ago, Politico reported.

Citing government figures, Politico said 401 anti-Semitic crimes were reported, with 12 of them classified as violent crimes and 349 having a far-right motive.

Eighty of those crimes occurred in Berlin.


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