Seven haredim arrested in Jerusalem Shabbat violence to be indicted
by Abigail Radoszkowicz
July 7, 2003
Jerusalem police on Sunday recommended that seven haredi suspects arrested during Shabbat violence on Jerusalem's busy Bar-Ilan thoroughfare be charged with incitement and disturbing the peace.
Four of the suspects were remanded Sunday at the Jerusalem Magistrate's Court for an additional 48 hours, while the other three were conditionally released on bail.
All seven, including one who is a minor, will be indicted, police said.
The community's leading rabbis did not come in person to disperse the Bar-Ilan protesters because they believed they would have no influence, explained a member of the circle around Rabbi Shalom Yosef Eliyashiv, Jerusalem Mayor Uri Lupolianski's spiritual mentor.
"People who don't adhere to the Shulhan Aruch [the code of religious law] which forbids moving stones on Shabbat as well as endangering life are not going to listen to rabbis, "says Ma'alot Dafna chief rabbi Rabbi Nahum Eisenstein.
Why have protests suddenly erupted in the wake of Lupolianski's election, breaking the quiet that had reigned since the 1998 agreement which closed off the road during prayer times?
"These are forbrechers [negative people] who want to undermine Lupolianski, because they don't think a religious man should be allowed to be a mayor of Jerusalem," he said.
However, Eisenstein blames police tactics for the continuation of the disturbances. "Most of the troublemakers are children with nothing to do on long Shabbat afternoons.
Only when the police show up do they start to act up, since kids like to play cops and robbers. It's their entertainment. If the police would just ignore them, I guarantee you that in three weeks both the inciters and the children would be gone."
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