Rabbanim Condemn Violence, Officials Work to Restore Calm



As prominent rabbinical figures continued to condemn violence in protests against the government lockdown, civil and police officials have been working on a plan to restore calm.

Chief Sephardi Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef said on Monday: “There is no justification for violent acts and that should stop immediately,” adding that their actions “aren’t in the name of the Torah.”

Shas Council of Sages President Rabbi Shalom Cohen published a letter castigating violence in the streets of a Torah community as a “chilul Hashem.”

Rabbi Cohen issued a “stern warning” to keep yourselves away from these places of conflict.”

On Monday, Bnei Brak Mayor Avraham Rubinstein and Deputy Police Commissioner David Bitan issued a joint statement condemning “anarchy” after a meeting aimed at finding a way to restoring law and order.

They discussed, among other measures, a plan to install cameras in public spaces to locate disturbers of the peace.

“We will definitely not allow marginal factions to tarnish the city and harm our fabric of life,” Rubinstein said.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu‏‏ announced that “everyone who rioted yesterday has been arrested.” Thirteen people were arrested, according to media reports.

“Police dealt with violators of health rules with a heavy hand, as they should, and we will continue to do so,” the premier said.

However, disturbances continued on Monday, with reports of clashes with police in Beit Shemesh and Yerushalayim.

In a rock-throwing incident, police said three officers were injured in Beit Shemesh; and in Meah Shearim, an officer was reported suffering a hand injury as protesters blocked roads and shattered bus windshields.