Half of Israelis Back Women of the Wall

Poll Reveals Surprising Support for Egalitarian Prayer at Kotel

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By Judy Maltz (Haaretz)

Published May 12, 2013.

More Israelis support Women of the Wall in their quest to win the right to pray at the Kotel, compared to those who don’t, a poll by the Israel Democracy Institute shows.

The poll, conducted among a representative sample of 600 Israelis ages 18 and above, found that 48 percent support the right of Women of the Wall to pray as they see fit, wearing a prayer shawl and phylacteries and reciting their prayers out loud, whereas 38 percent said they did not support this right.

Rather surprisingly, the poll found that men are more inclined to support the women’s prayer group than are women.

According to the poll, conducted a week before last Friday’s violent clashes at the Western Wall, when ultra-Orthodox teens hurled stones, chairs and water bottles at Women of the Wall supporters and activists as they held their monthly prayer service there, this support has grown stronger since the Jerusalem District Court ruled two weeks ago that it is not a violation of “local custom” for women to wear prayer shawls and phylacteries at the holy site.

For more, go to Haaretz



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