Jerusalem’s Ultra-Orthodox Jews demonstrate against cinema operating on Shabbat

Capital’s ultra-Orthodox Jews throw stones at police & smash windows, protesting opening of new multiplex movie theater that operates on Shabbat.

By i24news


Hundreds of Israeli ultra-Orthodox Jews took to the streets of Jerusalem on Friday evening to protest the opening of a new cinema multiplex that will be open on the Jewish Sabbath.

Hundreds of ultra-Orthodox Jews demonstrate in Jerusalem against cinema opening on Shabbat, Friday August 14

The demonstrators threw stones at police and smashed windows to protest the opening of the “Yes Planet” multiplex cinema complex.

Ultra-Orthodox Jews in Jerusalem and throughout Israel often protest against businesses or roads being open during the Jewish Sabbath in their areas as they see this as a desecration of the holy day.

The two separate protests on Friday evening occurred in neighborhoods far away from the new theater and after police were able to control the demonstrators, quiet was restored and they left the area.

The new complex built in conjunction with the Gabriel Sherover Foundation will be 28,500 square meters large, and feature 16 movie theaters.

After the official opening of the theater earlier, Moshe Greidinger, CEO of Yes Planet’s parent company Cineworld PLC, said he was aware of the possibility that haredi groups might protest.

“I believe in live and let live, anytime it doesn’t hurt someone else,” said Greidinger, according to Ynet. “I grew up with the Jerusalem ‘Shabbat wars’ – in the end you reach a status quo and I believe it will be that way this time as well.”

“We’ll take care of Jerusalem residents’ cultural, entertainment, and leisure needs, as well as those of guests from around the world,” Greidinger added.


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