Controversial leader prays at one of Judaism's holiest sites, expresses interest in returning with family
The Western Wall, also known as the Wailing Wall and the Kotel HaMa'aravi or Kotel in Hebrew, is the section of the western supporting wall of the Temple Mount, and is considered the sole remnant of the Second Temple following its destruction in 70 C.E.
Located in the Old City of Jerusalem, the Western Wall, built around 19 BCE by Herod the Great, has become the most sacred spot in the Jewish religion. It was returned to Jewish control during the 1967 Six-Day War, when Israeli troops captured the Old City from Jordan. A large plaza in front of the wall where Jews and visitors could congregate and pray was immediately paved.
Over the decades the wall has been visited by millions of tourists and pilgrims and is often on the itinerary of foreign heads of state who visit Israel. One of the customary traditions for visitors to the Western Wall is to place a small written prayer into one of the cracks in the Wall. It is also where many new IDF conscripts pledge their allegiance to the army and to Israel.
The Western Wall's religious and historic importance to the Jewish people combined with its extreme proximity to Muslim holy sites on the Temple Mount, primarily the Al-Aqsa mosque and the Dome of the Rock, has been the trigger for many outbreaks of violence since 1967.
In a Knesset debate on the egalitarian prayer space in the Western Wall, Lawmaker Yinon Azoulay suggests Reform Jews take the money they invest in Israel and 'build a Kotel in the U.S.'
In the process of two ministers fleeing the panel overseeing plans to extend a mixed-gender prayer space, the secular right wing gives an additional stamp of approval to Orthodox hegemony
Prof. Dan Bahat, the man who excavated the Western Wall tunnels, has petitioned against widening the Robinson's Arch section which he says would cause irreversible damage to the site.
Likud minister agrees to replace Justice Minister Shaked, who quit ■ Israel's culture minister: 'I've met Reform Jews in Argentina. They were very nice, but here in Israel they should behave'
Dan Bahat, who heads the group, supports the existence of an egalitarian prayer area for Reform Jews, but fears damage to the site
Noting that Regev had voted in favor of the original plan to create an egalitarian prayer space at the Western Wall, they accuse her of hypocrisy and capitulation to narrow political interests
‘This is something that is very personal for him, I’m sure – to visit his family in such a holy place,’ says his guide, Father Roman
Miri Regev, who heads the committee in charge of approving plan to construct a site for egalitarian prayer, announced she's resigning from the council
The model Marisa Papen was previously detained in Egypt after posing naked in front of religious site