Two weeks after petitioning the High Court of Justice against yeshiva students' army exemption, members of the Forum for the Promotion of Equal Share in the Burden are taking their campaign one step further.
On Thursday, they plan on marching in the heart of Bnei Brak, the central Israel city with the highest concentration of haredi residents, wearing IDF uniforms and waving the Israeli flag. However, their plans might be in jeopardy as police are refusing to authorize the march, which is slated to take place in the city center.
Police explained that Bnei Brak residents are aware of the upcoming protest and have expressed their concern that it will lead to a violent clash. The officers suggested that the activists hold the march in a different location inside the city which is considered "less haredi."
Roee Lavi, one of the forum's members, is outraged at the decision. "Just as the court ordered the police to approve and provide security for the Jerusalem Pride Parade despite warnings, and as Baruch Marzel and his supporters were allowed to march in Umm al-Fahm, we too have the right to demonstrate against the government, which allows tens of thousands of haredim to dodge national or military service," he told Ynet.
Lavi said that he and other forum members have received confirmation that hundreds of people are planning to participate in the protest.
'They might kills us'
Forum chairwoman Miri Baron also protested the decision and said: "We are law-abiding citizens and are therefore outraged by the suggestion that citizens in the State of Israel cannot enter Bnei Brak in order to convey a message of 'come with us, we need you.'"
Baron noted that "there is fear they will kill us and that is frightening."
Tel Aviv District Police said in response: "The police is responsible of maintaining public order and has therefore offered the protestors alternative routes for the event."
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