Left-wing protestors continue to harass Jews during prayers. Rabbi Leo Dee, whose wife and two daughters were murdered by a Palestinian terrorist in April, was praying in Dizengoff Square in Tel Aviv on Wednesday morning when left-wing protesters arrived with megaphones and attempted to disrupt the prayers. Worshipers spread out a sign that served as a partition and on it was written “Prayer for Unity with Israel”. One of the protesters intentionally pushed Rabbi Dee as he prayed and carried a lulav and etrog.
After the incident, municipal inspectors arrived and dismantled the partition.
Rabbi Dee told Ynet that “there was no violence, there was a lovely and dignified prayer. There were maybe five to ten people who disturbed and made noise, but it was fine and they didn’t disturb me. We prayed for an hour and a half and finished the prayer despite the people who came to interfere, who do not believe in freedom of religion and human rights.”
According to him, he came from his home in Efrat to attend a prayer in Tel Aviv to oppose “what happened in Kippur” and to promote religious freedom.
“There is now an issue of religious freedom in Tel Aviv,” Rabbi Dee said. “There is an order from the mayor that it is forbidden to pray [in a segregated manner] and only allowed in [an unsegregated manner], and this is against human rights and freedom of religion. This prayer was for religious freedom in Tel Aviv. The mayor apparently wants to turn Tel Aviv into Soviet Russia, where there is one religion that is the state and everyone is the same. This is our right to pray with a partition, without a partition, whoever wants and however they want – this is the true freedom of religion.”
Minister of National Security Itamar Ben Gvir, who shared the video, wrote: “The footage in which [Rabbi] Leo Dee is seen being pushed just because he dared to pray in the street of a city is shocking and disturbing. I strongly condemn it. I instructed the police to act decisively against those rioters just as they arrested the [Jews] spitting at the [Christian] pilgrims yesterday.”
MK Boaz Bismut of Likud wrote: “[This is] a wild man who gets up in the morning and decides to do only bad – in front of a man whose world was destroyed three times in a brutal attack, and who decides every morning to get up and do good.”
Public prayers have been held throughout the high holidays. On Yom Kippur, left-wing protesters harassed worshippers at a gender-segregated prayer event held by the Rosh Yehudi outreach organization. The municipality had ruled that gender-segregated prayer events were prohibited in public areas, though this only applies to Jewish events. The worshippers used Israeli flags as a makeshift partition but the left-wing protesters tore it down, verbally and physically harassed the worshippers, and threw prayer books to the ground.
The municipality responded by revoking the permits for activities Rosh Yehudi had planned for the Sukkoth festival.