Israel Police issued an order on Wednesday to cancel the yahrzeit event for the Babi Sali, z’l, next week in Netivot due to safety reasons. The decision was made following talks over the past two weeks with all relevant professionals.
A police statement said that the decision was made due to the fact that “there was no reasonable possibility of compliance with the provisions of the Safety Law by the date of the event and in accordance with the requirements set forth in Clause 8 of the Public Places Safety Law.”
“The police call on the public to obey this instruction and not arrive at the kever compound on the day of the hilula. The police will take the necessary measures in the wake of any violation of the order to prevent the entry of the general public and the holding of a public hilula in the compound of the Baba Sali, z’tl.”
In addition to safety concerns, coronavirus czar Prof. Salman Zarka was worried that the event would contribute to the spread of the Omicron variant. In a meeting on Tuesday with Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and senior Health Ministry officials, Zarka said that “100,000 people in Netivot next week at the height of the outbreak is a ‘mass attack.’ All our discussions about stopping the pandemic versus this type of event – it’s not proportional.”
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)