Dozens of anti-vaxxers staged a protest outside the home of a senior Health Ministry official on Wednesday, with some participants heard calling her the “daughter of the devil” and a “Nazi murderer.”
At least one protester was seen wearing a yellow Star of David on their T-shirt near the home of Sharon Alroy-Preis, the head of the Health Ministry’s public health department.
In footage aired by Channel 12, some participants were heard chanting, “We are against coercion, [we are] not coronavirus deniers. She wants to hurt our children for greed.”
“Sharon you are a disaster,” read one sign, which in Hebrew is a rhyme.
Alroy-Preis has recently come under fire over her support for government action amid rising cases.
An anonymous source bad-mouthed her to the press over what they claim are the public health director’s extreme stances in favor of reimposing significant COVID-19 restrictions and ramping up Israel’s vaccination drive among children.
“She acts like she’s crazy. She’s always screaming and when she’s asked to provide figures, she stammers and is evasive. There is no data behind this hysteria,” Channel 13 quoted the unnamed source as having said on Tuesday.
הפגנה מול ביתה של אלרואי פרייס???? pic.twitter.com/WDi2oCE69D
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Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz both put out statements Wednesday defending Alroy-Preis.
“Dr. Sharon Alroy-Preis is a devoted and professional public servant who works day and night for the health of Israeli citizens and the personal attack on her is inappropriate and unacceptable,” Bennett tweeted.
He added that “there is full backing for her [decisions],” citing Alroy-Preis’s role as a leading official in the government’s pandemic response.
Health Minister Horowitz also tweeted his support of Alroy-Preis, saying she has the full backing of his ministry.
Education Minister Yifat Shasha-Biton, who criticized top Health Ministry officials amid an escalating feud between the ministries over reopening schools, on Wednesday repeatedly declined to disavow or condemn those remarks. “You’ll have to ask whoever said that,” she told the network.