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 time.

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 protest.

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 violent disturbances.

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.

Deitsch 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 Wall.

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.

“Though 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.”

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