Haredi rabbi: Don't protest gay parade

Eda Haredit head reportedly tells rabbis to ignore pride rally planned to be held in J'lem next week.

gay parade 224.88 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])
gay parade 224.88
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])
Rabbi Tuvia Weiss, head of the ultra-Orthodox Eda Haredit's Rabbinic Court, has issued a directive to his community to refrain from demonstrating against the Gay Pride Parade planned to be held in Jerusalem next week. According to Israel Radio, Weiss instructed the Eda Haredit rabbis to ignore the parade altogether. Sources in the gay community's Open House told Israel Radio that Weiss's instructions come in light of an agreement they reached with the haredi leaders. However, despite the instructions, posters calling for demonstrations against the parade were put up in Jerusalem's haredi neighborhoods. Eda Haredit sources told the radio station that right-wing groups were apparently using the posters in order to try and incite violence. On Friday, many thousands of people danced, marched and cheered to trance and mixed Israeli dance music in Tel-Aviv's annual Gay Pride Parade. Organizers of the 11th annual parade were delighted with the turnout and boasted that this was the biggest parade yet, with rumors spreading that as many as 30,000 people attended. Last year, several thousand people marched in central Jerusalem to celebrate gay pride while ultra-Orthodox groups stationed nearby mourned the rally's passage through the Holy City. However, the annual parade, plagued by violent protests in previous years, passed without incident, despite right-wing activist Baruch Marzel and a handful of haredi protesters hanging banners in Paris Square and yelling slogans at participants. Ricky Ben-David and Abe Selig contributed to this report