Israel Police on Monday afternoon canceled the planned Jerusalem flag march that was scheduled for this Thursday following a meeting between the event organizers and the police.
The police refused to accept any compromise to allow the parade to take place, even a plan to limit the march to west Jerusalem, Arutz Sheva reported.
Hamas responded to the cancellation of the march by stating: “The cancellation of the march is a new breach of Israel’s principles and the beginning of a new equation in which Jerusalem is a red line.”
Defense Minister Benny Gantz on Motzei Shabbos demanded that the march be canceled following a security assessment, and Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi sent a letter to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu warning of the current “international sensitivity” regarding Jerusalem.
Betzalel Smotrich, chairman of the Religious Zionist Party, slammed the decision, saying it is a shameful surrender to terrorism and Hamas’ threats.
“The police commissioner is unable to protect marchers with Israeli flags on the streets of Jerusalem and is unable to protect the Jewish residents of Lod, Ramle and Akko,” he said. “Now he is also turning Yahya Sinwar into the one who runs Jerusalem.”
Otzma Yehudit chairman Itamar Ben-Gvir said: “I don’t intend to give in and I will walk the full route around the Old City of Jerusalem this Thursday. I call on Knesset members to join me and exercise our immunity and the sovereignty of the State of Israel in Jerusalem.”
The parade is held every year on Jerusalem Day but was canceled this year due to a barrage of rockets launched by Hamas on Jerusalem that day, which initiated Operation Guardian of the Walls.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)