Israeli minister attacked in Jerusalem

Israeli minister attacked in Jerusalem
# 25 May 2010 02:28 (UTC +04:00)
Baku – APA. Ultra-Orthodox Jewish protesters threw stones at Israeli cabinet minister Eli Yishai and slashed the tires of his vehicle in Jerusalem Monday, but he was whisked away from the scene unharmed, police said, APA reports quoting “Reuters”.
Yishai, who is Israel’s interior minister and an Orthodox Jew himself, was paying a condolence call in the largely religious Meah Shearim neighborhood when he was attacked.
Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said demonstrators "slashed his tires and threw stones, and police arrived at the scene and dispersed them, and removed him safely from the area."
The incident pointed up the tensions among Jewish groups inside Israel, where many ultra-Orthodox Jews have been angered by a government decision last week to remove ancient bones from the site of a planned new hospital emergency room.
Many Orthodox Jews believe moving or building on top of human remains violates religious law.
Israeli media reports said that Yishai managed to take cover inside a building as stones were thrown at him.
Yishai, 47, heads a religious party called Shas, a partner in Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s right-wing governing coalition, whose championing of greater funding for religious institutions often sparks opposition from non-religious Jews.
His refusal to join in a coalition with centrist Kadima leader Tzipi Livni was said to have been pivotal to Netanyahu’s rise to power after a national election last year.
Yishai’s ministry was also accused of publicising a planned housing project for East Jerusalem, which Palestinians seek for a capital, when U.S. Vice President Joe Biden visited in March, which inflamed tensions with Washington at the time.