Reform worshippers, Haredi Jews and security forces clashed at the Western Wall on Thursday morning after the Israel Movement for Reform and Progressive Judaism attempted to hold a ceremony celebrating the ordination of new rabbis. Director of the Reform Movement in Israel Rabbi Gilad Kariv claimed that the violence is a direct result of the government-backed incitement against the community.
Watch: Clashes at the Western Wall
Jewish Reform worshipers arrived at the Western Wall on Thursday morning for a ceremonial prayer that resulted in clashes with Haredi worshipers and security forces. The Reform group was stopped by security forces at the entrance of the site as they were attempting to bring a Torah scroll into the complex.
Rabbi Gilad Kariv, the executive director of the Israel Movement for Reform and Progressive Judaism (IMPJ), claimed that the violence his movement experienced is a direct result of incitement that is being led by ultra-Orthodox leaders and backed by the Israeli government, which, according to Kariv, supports the Haredi establishment.
Clashes at the Western Wall, Jerusalem Photo Credit: Channel 2 News
“The prime minister may think that pretty words will fix the rift with the Jewish diaspora – but the millions of Reform Jews in the world do not intend to give up their right to pray at the Western Wall or anywhere else,” said Kariv. “We are calling on the prime minister to wake up before an irreversible chasm with the Jewish world is created.”