Huldai: There will be buses in Tel Aviv on Shabbat (JERUSALEM POST) By BEN HARTMAN AND JPOST.COM STAFF 02/22/12)
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Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai on Wednesday stood by a Tel Aviv Municipal
Council decision to seek permission from the Transportation Ministry
to operate buses in the city on Shabbat.
Despite criticism, there will be public transport in Tel Aviv on
Shabbat, Huldai told Army Radio.
On Tuesday, Yisrael Meir Lau, chief rabbi of Tel Aviv, several
religious MKs and the Tzohar national-religious rabbinical
association called on the municipality to reverse the decision.
“A feeling of deep disappointment and pain filled me when I heard
about this decision,” Lau wrote. “[It] would be a serious injury to
the sanctity of Shabbat – which is a reminder of the creation of the
universe, a reminder of the Exodus from Egypt, a day of rest for all
workers and a day of spiritual elevation and family togetherness.”
A Transportation Ministry spokesman indicated Tuesday that the
ministry would not approve Tel Aviv´s request. The Transportation
Ministry will "not infringe [upon] the status quo which has been in
place for decades regarding all aspects of public transport on
Shabbat,” the spokesman said.
Nevertheless, Huldai on Wednesday vowed to continue the mission to
bring buses to Tel Aviv on Shabbat. "We must determine if we want to
live in a democratic, Jewish state or a solely Jewish state - which
will be similar to Iran," Huldai told Army Radio. "The citizens have
the right to visit their relatives on Shabbat or go out for a trip,"
The Tel Aviv mayor cited Brooklyn as an example of a place where
Orthodox Jews practice their religion while public transportation
operates everyday of the week. Jeremy Sharon contributed to this
report. (© 1995-2011, The Jerusalem Post 02/22/12)
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