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Security forces raise alertness for Yom Kippur
Police commissioner tells forces to be alert in sensitive areas; Haifa attempts to coordinate overlap with Feast of the Cross; MDA will treat dehydration

The defense establishment completed its set up for the event of Yom Kippur starting Friday. Chief of Police Yohanan Danino told forces to be alert in cities where friction between Arabs and Jews is expected, with an emphasis on Temple Mount.

 

A blockade will be placed on the West Bank starting midnight Thursday and lasting through Saturday.

 

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Fearing riots in Haifa due to an overlap between Yom Kippur and the Christian Feast of the Cross, Archbishop Elias Shakur met with Israel's Chief Rabbi David Lau, along with Israeli Police Commander of the Coastal District, Hagai Dotan, and police commanders from various districts.

 

Traditional Jewish custom Kapparot in Bnei-Brak (Photo: AP) (Photo: AP)
Traditional Jewish custom Kapparot in Bnei-Brak (Photo: AP)

 

Shakur explained that in Haifa, they are worried about riots: "What you do in church is no different from what Jews do at temple. People pray silently and go home." He turned to Dotan, who was sitting beside him, and said, "If God forbid anyone causes riots, or someone outside the congregation wants to use the occasion to create a problem, you'll be there."

 

Rabbi Lau told Ynet that the meeting, which took place at the Archbishop's home, was fruitful. "We agreed we'd be in touch today... and find the way to prevent frictions by postponing parades or celebrating indoors rather than on the street. This dialogue is of utter importance, and I am happy for it," he said.

 

Rabbi Lau and Archbishop Shakur (Photo: Yerach Toker) (Photo: Yerach Toker)
Rabbi Lau and Archbishop Shakur (Photo: Yerach Toker)

 

Jerusalem will deploy police, Border Guard and volunteer forces in east Jerusalem and the Old City to keep order and safety of thousands of Jews who will pray at the Western Wall. Civil Guard volunteers will be armed to secure synagogues in their neighborhood.

 

As it does every year, the Jerusalem police will set blockades in main roads and deploy some 150 police officers in the city in order to prevent Arab resident driving into Jewish neighborhoods. Forces will be deployed in mixed neighborhoods.

 

Follwing an security assessment by the Jerusalem Police, on Friday, access to Temple Mount will be restricted to Israeli men over 45 and women of any age. The police stressed it would act to stop any riots.

 

Magen David Adom Services were also preparing for Yom Kippur, with paramedics and ambulance forces bolstered.

 

MDA services asked the public to allow ambulances to move freely on the roads, and to call emergency services in any event in which signs of dehydration appear, seeing as high temperatures predicted on Yom Kippur.

 

Yaron Kellner, Omri Efraim and Ahiya Raved contributed to this article

 

 

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