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(photo credit: AP)
A group of youngsters putting up posters in Jerusalem condemning the deadly shooting spree in a Tel Aviv gay community center last week was attacked overnight Thursday by haredim in Mea She'arim. After a short chase down the alleyways of the ultra-Orthodox neighborhood, the group and an Army Radio reporter who was with them managed to get away.
The head of the group that was putting up posters all around the capital said they had aimed to raise awareness for the attack in every section of Israeli society.
"The moment it comes to murder, this ceases to be just a haredi society, but part of an entire society that needs to understand that lines have been crossed," he told Army Radio. "Murder is something that needs to be shouted about."
The youngsters said they hadn't anticipated such a response in Mea She'arim.
"We never claimed that the murder was carried out by haredim, we just wanted to promote peace and say that the idea that murder crosses the line is something we all have in common," another member of the group said. "The haredim apparently thought we were blaming them."
"If we had known it would end like this, we wouldn't have put up even one poster," he added.
On Saturday night, marking a week since the shooting that left two people dead and around a dozen wounded, the gay community will hold a solidarity vigil in Tel Aviv's Rabin Square.
President Shimon Peres, Education Minister Gideon Sa'ar, Culture and Sport Minister Limor Livnat and Meretz MK Nitzan Horowitz, who is gay, will all speak at the event.
Several musicians will perform at the gathering, including Rita, Dana International, Ninette Tayeb, Amir Fay Guttman, Keren Peles, Corinne Alal, and Ivri Lider.
The vigil will be led by Gal Uchovsky, a gay film producer and TV personality.