Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.
Breaking News

‘Racist’ Jerusalem Day March Through Muslim Quarter Gets Green Light From Judge

JERUSALEM — A controversial annual Jerusalem Day march that passes through the Old City’s Muslim Quarter will not be rerouted, Israel’s Supreme Court ruled.

The court issued its decision on Sunday morning, hours before the scheduled start of the march. The ruling came in response to a petition filed late last week by Ir Amim, a left-wing organization that monitors the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in Jerusalem. The organization called on the court to cancel the march, citing the possible start of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan on Sunday evening, which would bring thousands of Muslims to the Old City as well.

Ramadan is set to begin on either Sunday evening or Monday evening, after a determination after sundown on Sunday whether the crescent moon has officially appeared.

March organizers agreed Sunday to begin the march at least 15 minutes early, following an agreement last week to start an hour earlier. According to the court ruling, the last marcher will be allowed to enter the Old City via the Damascus gate at 6:15 and all marchers will be out of the Muslim Quarter by 7 p.m. The start of Ramadan will not be declared until at least 7:43.

In previous years some Jewish marchers have shouted racist and nationalist slogans at Muslim onlookers, and have committed acts of vandalism in the Muslim areas.

Police this year have threatened to crack down on marchers and have “zero tolerance” for violence and racism.

Palestinian leaders denounced the march as a “racist” provocation that would lead to violence and set back the cause of peace.

Over 30,000 marchers are expected to take part in the “flag dance” parade, which begins at Sacher Park in the center of Jerusalem and ends at the Western Wall, according to Israel Police. Thousands took part in morning prayer services Sunday at the Western Wall, Israel Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said.

Thousands of people pray at western wall, part of celebrations taking part in Jerusalem today. Police securing area. pic.twitter.com/J2AwREbrGC

— Micky Rosenfeld (@MickyRosenfeld) June 5, 2016

I hope you appreciated this article. Before you go, I’d like to ask you to please support the Forward’s award-winning, nonprofit journalism during this critical time.

Now more than ever, American Jews need independent news they can trust, with reporting driven by truth, not ideology. We serve you, not any ideological agenda.

At a time when other newsrooms are closing or cutting back, the Forward has removed its paywall and invested additional resources to report on the ground from Israel and around the U.S. on the impact of the war, rising antisemitism and the protests on college campuses.

Readers like you make it all possible. Support our work by becoming a Forward Member and connect with our journalism and your community.

Make a gift of any size and become a Forward member today. You’ll support our mission to tell the American Jewish story fully and fairly. 

— Rachel Fishman Feddersen, Publisher and CEO

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.