Police scuffle with Haredim protesting light rail construction in Jerusalem

Officers seen shoving, grappling ultra-Orthodox demonstrators to the ground for arrest; at least 1 person treated for injury

Ultra-Orthodox Jewish men clash with police during a protest against the construction work for the Jerusalem light rail, in Jerusalem, June 7, 2023. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Illustrative: Police clash with ultra-Orthodox Jews protesting against a cellphone shop in Jerusalem's Geula neighborhood on January 16, 2023. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Police officers clashed with Haredi protesters opposed to the construction of a light rail line in Jerusalem on Wednesday night.

One of the officers was seen on video lightly slapping one of the protesters in what appeared to be an unprovoked assault.

Another video showed an officer grappling a demonstrator to the ground to forcefully arrest him. It wasn’t clear what preceded the incident.

The demonstrators see the construction as a secular encroachment into their neighborhood.

The protests against the light rail by extremist Haredi groups had subsided in recent months, but picked back up over the last several days.

Wednesday’s protest was the third day in a row of demonstrations.

Dozens of the demonstrators went out to the capital’s Bar Ilan Street to attempt to disrupt the light rail construction.

First responders treated at least one protester who had been shoved into a wall and fell down, the Ynet news site reported.

The construction has been going on for several years under the approval of the Jerusalem municipality.

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