Aaron's Tomb .
(photo credit: WIKIMEDIA COMMONS / JONEIKIFI)
Jordanian police have reportedly confiscated prayer shawls and tefillin from a group of some 20 haredi men who traveled to the country Sunday to visit the grave site of the biblical figure Aaron.
Members of the group told Walla News that Jordanian police arrived at the hotel they were staying near Petra and searched their rooms for religious items, confiscating several sets of tefillin and prayer shawls from some members of the group.
Some of the group subsequently returned to Israel in the early hours of Monday, while others visited the site of Aaron’s burial, ignoring the tensions and even managing to pray there, including reciting the Priestly Blessing, with one set of tefillin and several prayer shawls that were not discovered by the Jordanian police.
Rabbi Menashe Zlikah, a member of the group, told the Kol Hai radio station that Jordanian Police had forbidden them from praying anywhere in Jordan, including the hotel, and told them that anyone who prayed would be arrested.
The men have been in touch with the Foreign Ministry and Israeli consul in Jordan who advised them to keep a low profile and return to Israel as quickly as possible.
Efforts to help the group have been hampered by severe tension after an Israeli security guard at the country’s embassy compound in Amman shot and killed two Jordanians Sunday after one attacked the guard with a screwdriver, as well as the difficult situation at the embassy itself.
The anniversary of Aaron’s death is the first of the Hebrew month of Av, which fell on Monday and was the reason the group traveled to the site, leaving before the incident in Amman took place.