Dozens of haredim attack Barkat's car

Police reinforcements called in to escort mayor from Ezrat Torah neighborhood after meeting with rabbi.

barkat naughty boy 248.88 (photo credit: AP)
barkat naughty boy 248.88
(photo credit: AP)
Dozens of haredim surrounded Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat's car on Rehov Chana on Sunday evening, several of them hurling stones, cursing him, and trying to block the road. Police escorted Barkat as he left the Ezrat Torah neighborhood after a personal meeting with a rabbi. He was unharmed. The mayor said in response to the incident that he would not give in to bullying, adding that "whoever thinks violence and thuggery will achieve anything is mistaken." The Jerusalem Municipality released a statement saying that the mayor's car was damaged and that police officers who were escorting him were forced to call for reinforcements in order to clear a way for his exit from the neighborhood. The municipality's United Torah Judaism faction condemned the attack, saying in a statement that "violence is not the way of the Torah," and that those committing violent acts were "not heeding the words of the great scholars of Israel." Barkat has recently enraged haredim by opening Jerusalem's Carta parking lot on Saturdays, prompting weekly riots in the capital.