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Photo: Gil Yohanan
Uri Lupolianski (Archive photo)
Photo: Gil Yohanan
Photo: Zoom 77
Called for intensified protests. Rabbi Elyashiv
Photo: Zoom 77
Haredim attack J’lem mayor
Crowd protesting upcoming gay parade hurls stones during Lupolianski's visit to event hall in ultra-Orthodox Me’a Shearim neighborhood; police officers rescue mayor, his deputy from building unharmed
Jerusalem Mayor Uri Lupolianski was pelted with stones Tuesday evening during his visit to the ultra-Orthodox Me’a Shearim neighborhood in the city.

 

Haredim hurled rocks at a function hall in Mea Shearim while Lupolianski and his deputy were inside in protest of the plans to hold the Gay Pride Parade in the city on Friday.

 

Police forces arrived and rescued the two from the building. Nobody was injured.

 

The mayor arrived at the Bnot-Yerushalayim hall to celebrate a “Seven Blessings” with Rabbi Yosef Shalom Elyashiv, head of the Lithuanian sect and one of the most prominent Ashkenazi figures in Israel.

Despite the fact that Lupolianski has called out against holding the parade in the city, many in the haredi community hold him directly responsible.

 

Word spread quickly of the “Zionist” mayor’s visit to the heart of Me’a Shearim, prompting dozens of haredim to make their way to the hall and stone the structure.

 

It should be noted that Rabbi Elyashiv has called in recent days to intensify the anti-parade protest.

 

Gaydamak to resolve dispute?

The dramatic event occurred on what was a relatively calm evening in the capital, with only a few disturbances reported in ultra-Orthodox neighborhoods. Police did however detain seven haredim.

 

At Hashabbat Square youths torched garbage cans and damaged street signs; police dispersed the crowd; a nearby road was closed off after protesters poured oil on it.

 

Earlier police forces have pushed back 150 haredim who had been blocking traffic along a road near the city of Modi’in; after firefighters had washed the road of the flammable liquids poured onto it by the protesters the route was opened for traffic. 

 

Meanwhile, business mogul Arcadi Gaydamak met with representatives of the Open House organization in an effort to convince them to relocate the Gay Pride Parade from Jerusalem and hold it in a different location.

 

Gaydamak also met with haredi Knesset members to discuss the possibility that he would fund the parade if it were to be held outside the capital.

 

Efrat Weiss contributed to the report

 

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