Israel’s Minister of Transport has emphatically ruled out the introduction of public transport on Shabbos Kodesh.
Minister of Transport Yisrael Katz (Likud) made clear that he will not permit public transport to operate in Israel on Shabbos. He said that the campaign being waged for the introduction of Shabbos public transport is “led by left-wing activists.”
Katz wrote on his Facebook page, “The Israeli government supports maintaining the status-quo in the matter of public transport on the Sabbath and holidays in line with the principles set by David Ben Gurion, Israel’s first prime minister, and as observed by all Israeli governments. As transport minister I take this position, and I also think it is right from a personal point of view. Israel is a Jewish and democratic state and as such it must protect unique rules connected to its identity, while on a personal level every individual is free to drive as he or she pleases.”
In the past few days, Katz has been involved in Internet altercations with proponents of public transport in Israel on Shabbos.
With Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu striving to form a coalition with Israel’s religious parties, Katz’s stand on public transport helps pave the way to the formation of a new government, following last month’s elections. [Globes]