Women of the Wall to Police: Request that Chief of Police Prevent Male Police from Physical Contact with Women at the Holy Site

February 6, 2013

Anat Hoffman, Chair: This is a serious violation of the women, from a religious standpoint and according to Jewish Law.

Women of the Wall Chair, Anat Hoffman, sent a letter this morning to Chief of the Israel Police Yohanan Danino requesting that he direct the Jerusalem Police Commander to prevent the male officers at the Western Wall from coming into physical contact with the women who pray at the Western Wall. Contact between men and women, especially when forceful, is a serious violation for the religious women.

The request to police was issued after months of consistent physical removal and handling of women at Western Wall, at the security entrance as well as on the women’s side of the holy site, by male police officers. Women of the Wall have complied with police and never resisted arrest or detention. There has never been any need for physically restraining the women who pray at the Kotel, or taking them forcefully. Hoffman added, “If the situation in fact does call for police, then we request that female officers be present, in order to respect the beliefs and honor of these women.”

In the letter, Hoffman requested that the command be passed down through the ranks in time for the fair and respectful treatment of any women praying at the Western Wall with Women of the Wall on first day of the Jewish month of Adar, Monday February 11, 2013 at 7AM.

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