Jerusalem's tent protest movement has united with the GLBT community Thursday, joining the Jerusalem gay pride parade.
The reinforced march began in the capital's Independence Park and continued towards the Knesset, where activists have set up camp
over the past week in protest against the escalating housing prices. Following the parade, a rally was held at the nearby Wohl Rose Park. Various MKs and other public figures spoke at the event.
"We say to Prime Minister Netanyahu, this is not a sectorial struggle, so don't try to divide and conquer us," said MK Zahava Gal-On. "this is a pride parade against a government of shame, a homophobic government. A government that doesn't understand that all of the struggles are common struggles for one social justice."
When one speaker mentioned the fact that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Opposition Chairwoman Tzipi Livni, and Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat did not make the effort to attend the rally, he enthusiastic applause.
"We support everyone fighting for the right to live with dignity," said Marik Shtern, an activist in the housing protest. "All of the different battles join into one."
"I'm straight, but I'm going to march because ultimately, all of these struggles converge into one struggle for social justice and change," another housing activist, Yarden Karni, said.
Large police forces secured the event. The organizers of the parade anticipated thousands of people to take part in the march.
Noam Gal, chairman of the Jerusalem Open House for Pride and Tolerance and an organizer of the parade, said: "The parade's message this year is a message of cooperation between the different battles, and the connection between them. Women, underprivileged people, gays, lesbians, bi- and transsexuals are all fighting the same fight."
As in previous such parades in Jerusalem, some 20 ultra-Orthodox and right-wing activists arrived at the International Convention Center to protest. One of the signs they carried read "Jerusalem is proud of its soldiers, not its sick."
Also Thursday, a mass demonstration
took place in Tel Aviv. Parents rallying against the high costs of raising children were joined by the tent protest movement as well, and marched along Ben Zion Boulevard towards Rothschild Boulevard.