In the second such attack in two days, on Thursday evening a uniformed soldier
was assaulted in the capital by fellow haredim opposed to ultra- Orthodox army
According to Police spokesman Micky
Rosenfeld, around 6:30 p.m., while the soldier was walking alone on Shmuel
Hanavi Street, the assailants drove up and began cursing him and throwing
objects at him without provocation.
“The man took shelter in a nearby
building and police units arrived shortly thereafter to protect him and secure
the scene,” said Rosenfeld. “He was uninjured and has since filed a
Rosenfeld said no arrests had been made, but that police were
actively searching for the vehicle.
A similar incident occurred in the
capital on Tuesday evening, when dozens of haredi men attacked another uniformed
haredi soldier in the ultra- Orthodox neighborhood of Mea She’arim.
approximately 7:30 p.m., that soldier was surrounded and threatened by nearly
100 haredi men on Gimzo Street, he but managed to flee to a nearby building and
Several police units were called to the scene, including
border police and riot officers, who forcibly broke through the crowd of haredi
men and safely extracting the soldier.
Rosenfeld said the unidentified
soldier was “shaken up” but not wounded, adding that the crowd threw stones at
A low-level riot continued after the soldier was extricated,
with more haredi men joining the crowd, until the police dispersed it.
least four arrests were made on charges of disturbing the peace.
Minister Binyamin Netanyahu promptly condemned the attack, vowing to “take a
strong stand against those who attempt to strike fear in citizens fulfilling
their duty to the state.”
There have been at least two other assaults
against ultra-Orthodox soldiers by haredim in recent weeks, following a campaign
to delegitimize and stigmatize men who choose to serve in the IDF as “betraying”
The campaign includes the dissemination of flyers,
posters and information about the “danger” these soldiers pose to the
In a Knesset committee hearing last week, Brig.-Gen. Gadi
Agmon, of the IDF Manpower Directorate, noted that the army has received 80
complaints of physical violence and verbal abuse against haredi soldiers by
members of their community.
Complaints include having their tires
slashed, graffiti sprayed on their homes, being been spat on and having stones
thrown at them.
Science, Technology and Space Minister Yaakov Peri, who
headed a committee that drew up legislation for drafting haredi men into the
army, strongly condemned the ongoing harassment.
“Any attempt to
physically harm or [damage] the morale of soldiers will be answered immediately
and uncompromisingly by the state,” Peri said shortly after Tuesday’s
Jerusalem Post staff contributed to this report.
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