Photo: Reuters
Hasidic Jews in Uman (archives)
Photo: Reuters
One of the protester yelling at police
Photo: AP
About 100 were arrested
Photo: AP
Photo: Reuters
Pilgrims in Uman (Archives)
Photo: Reuters

Ukrainians protest Jewish pilgrimage

Some 300 supporters of country's nationalist party demand that Hasidic Jews not be allowed to gather in town of Uman this week

Police have detained about 100 activists of Ukraine's nationalist party on Sunday who protested the annual pilgrimage of Hasidic Jews in southern Ukraine.


About 300 supporters of the nationalist party Svoboda, or Liberty, demanded that Hasidic Jews not be allowed to gather in the town of Uman, about 125 miles (200 kilometers) south of the capital. The protesters at the rally shouted "Ukraine for Ukrainians." 


A court ordered the activists ahead of time not to stage the demonstration.


"המשטרה השתמשה בסמכותה לרעה". ההפגנה באומן (צילום: AP)

Police and protesters at Sunday's rally (Photo: AP)


"The protesters used fragmentation grenades, slingshots and other assault equipment," Ukrainian Interior Ministry spokesman Victoria Kushnir was quoted as saying by the news agency UNIAN. The activists also wielded signs bearing anti-Semitic messages.


According a statement released by Svoboda, Uman residents have complained that the pilgrims treat them disrespectfully.


"To say that they had fragmentation grenade and slingshots is a provocation," the party said. "The police abused its power against peace-seeking people."


The right-wing party also claimed that the police attacked the protesters with no prior warning, hitting women, children and the elderly. Moreover, those arrested were not allowed to see a doctor or a lawyer.


Close to 30,000 Hasidic Jews from around the world are expected in Uman this week to celebrate Rosh Hashana at the grave of Rabbi Nachman of Bratslav, who died in 1810.



פרסום ראשון: 09.26.11, 08:20
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