Jerusalem - Mayor's Choice of Woman Deputy Could Clash with Orthodox Coalition
Jerusalem - Mayor Nir Barkat is facing a crisis with his Haredi (ultra-Orthodox ) coalition partners because he wants to appoint a female deputy mayor from the secular camp.
Over the last few days, the threats and counter-threats being hurled by both sides have been escalating. According to city council members, Barkat said he would fire any existing deputy mayor who votes against the appointment. The Haredim, for their part, have threatened to dismantle the municipal coalition.
At the heart of the storm is Rachel Azaria, a representative of the Wake Up Jerusalem movement, which comprises both secular and religious activists.
To make the situation even more absurd, she herself is a religious, Sabbath-observant Jew. But sources in the municipality said this fact has actually exacerbated Haredi anger.
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