Conference of Presidents Leaders Laud Opening of Police Station on Har Hazeisim


har-hazeisimRichard Stone, Chairman, and Malcolm Hoenlein, Executive Vice Chairman, of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, lauded the opening of a police sub-station on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem.

“We welcome the announcement today of the opening of the police station on the Mount of Olives, which we hope will stem the continuing acts of violence and desecration and add to the security of the residents and visitors from around the world who come to visit graves of the luminaries of Jewish history interned there. In particular, those with loved ones buried on the mountain will hopefully be able to visit without fear and will not have to face the daunting and often expensive task of reconstructing graves after multiple acts of destruction,” said the Jewish leaders.

“The Mount of Olives has for 3,000 years served as a Jewish burial place. From the First Temple period to today, those interned on the holy site span from the Prophets Haggai, Zechariah and Malachiā€Ž to Prime Minister Menachem Begin, Hadassah founder Henrietta Szold, many great rabbis, and as many as 150,000 others.

“We visited just a few weeks ago together with Congressmembers Elliot Engel and Jerald Nadler and we were all shocked by the wanton acts of desecration and vandalism. While there, a delegation of the Conference of Presidents was subjected to an attack in which large rocks were thrown at the Conference delegation. It was a stark reminder of the situation that has developed there and which resulted in the injury of numerous people as well as damage to cars, including several serious attacks in the last few days. Even a bridegroom visiting the grave of his recently departed mother on the day of his wedding was severely injured.

“The government has also installed 125 cameras and has a team working to monitor them, which should enable the police to respond in a timely fashion and apprehend those responsible for these crimes. It is important for the government to support legislation that will impede acts of vandalism in the future by holding the perpetrators, even if they are minors or their parents, accountable.

“We commend Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and members of his staff for their leadership in this effort, as well as Minister of Public Security Yitzchak Aharonovich, and all those, including the Mayor of the City of Jerusalem, Nir Barkat, who have made extensive efforts to end the violence and enhance this historic site with its great significance. This is an obligation that we bear to protect the dignity of the departed and sanctity of this 3,000 year old holy place for future generations,” said Stone and Hoenlein.

{Noam Newscenter}