Secular Israelis protest at ultra-Orthodox views

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Secular Israelis protest at ultra-Orthodox views

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Several hundred Israelis have taken to the streets of Jerusalem in protest against a campaign by ultra- Orthodox Jews to shutter all businesses in the city on the Jewish Sabbath.

The march highlighted the deep divisions between the inhabitants of the Israeli capital. One resident said: “I’ve come to protest for the freedom of Jerusalem, that Jerusalem is for everybody not only just the ultra-Orthodox, the religious or the secular. It’s for everybody and no one must dictate to us how to run the city.” The ultra-Orthodox community has been mobilised recently against the computer chip maker INTEL whose Jerusalem factory works on the Sabbath. They also want car parks to be closed in order to restrict travel. But they lost influence on the running of the city in last year’s hotly contested municipal elections.