Thousands of haredi high school girls are expected to arrive at the Western Wall
Monday morning to protest the Women of the Wall prayer-rights activist group
which will be holding its monthly prayer service at the site at the same
Jerusalem Deputy Mayor Yossi Deitsch, of the haredi Degel Hatorah
Party and along with several other party members, has been coordinating with the
senior haredi rabbinic leadership to get approval for the
Deitsch’s office said on Sunday that buses have been arranged
for the 7,000 haredi high-school girls in Jerusalem to transport them to the
Western Wall on Monday morning.
The buses will leave haredi neighborhoods
at 5:30 a.m. to arrive at the site ahead of the Women of the Wall, who
have scheduled their prayer service for 7:00 a.m.
Several hundred haredi
men are expected to attend the protest as well, but only married men have been
asked to go in order to prevent the more excitable haredi youth from causing
Deitsch’s office noted that as well as getting
approval for the protest from Rabbi Aharon Leib Shteinman – the most senior
Ashkenazi haredi rabbi – approval has also been received from leading hassidic
rabbis and from Shas spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef.
described the Women of the Wall as “a small handful of women who are just
interested in causing a provocation.
“The real women of the wall are
those righteous women who go every day to pray sincerely at the Western
What the so-called Women of the Wall are doing is a debasement of
the Western Wall.”
In response to the protest being arranged, Women of
the Wall said that it welcomed the arrival of the haredi girls.
this may be intended to intimidate and overpower Women of the Wall, we truly
welcome the young women and their prayers,” the organization said in a statement
on its website. “This act just proves what we have always said: There is enough
room at the Kotel for all women from all backgrounds and traditions to pray
side-by-side. Women can share the space at the Kotel.”