J'lem: Hundreds gather supporting W.Bank construction

Right wing activists fill Zion Square at rally saying "Yes to building, no to making concessions"; issue of identity of Jewish state also raised.

December 23, 2010 20:35
1 minute read.
Right wing protestors in Jerusalem

Jerusalem Right Protest 311. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)


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Hundreds of people took part in a demonstration taking place Thursday evening at Zion Square in Jerusalem in support of settlement construction in the West Bank.

Right wing activists, among others, expressed opposition to a renewal of the settlement freeze, under the banner of the event titled "Yes to building, no to making concessions."

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MK Michael Ben-Ari (National Union) delivered a speech, during which he attacked his political opponents and said "there is a frontal attack from the small, poor and dangerous left-wing. The nation dislikes them because they want to change the only state of the Jewish people to a state for all nations except the Jewish people."

"They [the leftists] call us racists, but they say that haredim should live in a place of their own. This is hypocrisy. They attack the rabbis [who signed the letter] and then fight for the identity of this country. I salute these rabbis."

The demonstration in Jerusalem comes just two days after hundreds gathered at the shuk in south Tel Aviv’s Hatikva neighborhood in a raucous demonstration against the large number of African refugees and migrant workers who have made the neighborhood their home in recent years.

Waving Israeli flags and chanting jeers against Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, the Hatikva residents were also joined by protesters from the Shapira and Kiryat Shalom neighborhoods in south Tel Aviv, which have absorbed the majority of the African population in Tel Aviv. At times the protest resembled a soccer game, with the pauses between speakers punctuated by ghetto blasters playing Mizrahi singer Eyal Golan’s hit “Me Shemamin” and Hebrew classic “Ko Haolam Kulo” put to a techno beat.

A look around the crowd revealed that large numbers of the participants had also taken part in a demonstration the night earlier in Bat Yam, held to protest Arab residents of the city and what organizers said is a large-scale attempt by Arab- Israelis to seduce and “defile” Jewish girls across Israel.

Ben Hartman contributed to this report.

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