Former Jerusalem Mayor Uri Lupolianski on Sunday returned to his home in the capital's Sanhedria neighborhood, where he will remain under house arrest for the next 10 days.
Lupolianski, who is suspected of receiving a bribe in the Holyland affair, was greeted by dozens of ultra-Orthodox. They carried the former mayor on their shoulders and chanted, "Uri, there is no one like you in the world" and "Who is it? It's the next prime minister."
Lupolianski remained silent, but was visibly pleased by the warm reception.
After entering his home, Lupolianski waved to the crowd from a balcony. The young haredim responded with chants of "Uri Lupolianski the king. We are not going anywhere."
Warm welcome (Photo: Gil Yohanan)
Moshe, one of the supporters, told Ynet, "He's innocent. They have no proof. It's all a bunch of nonsense; that's why he was released."
Some of the photographers covering Lupolianski's return home were attacked by the haredim.
Lupolianski will not be allowed to leave the country, but received permission to leave his Jerusalem home for medical examinations only. He has been forbidden to contact municipal offices, as well as Yad Sarah, the medical equipment volunteer organization he founded and into which he allegedly funneled bribe funds he received from the Holyland construction companies.
Internal Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch said Sunday that Holyland-type affairs were only the "tip of the iceberg in terms of the magnitude of the corruption epidemic."
The minister added, "We cannot bury our heads in the sand; we cannot ignore it. This case (Holyland) reeks of corruption."