Israel: Scores of ultra-Orthodox Jews arrested at military draft law protest

Hundreds of ultra-Orthodox Jews blocked an intersection near the entrance to Jerusalem on Thursday, in protest against the arrest of a religious student who refused to enlist in the IDF. Demonstrators were seen sitting in the middle of the street and shouting «We will die but not join the army.» Scuffles broke out, as police tried to clear the area. Forty six demonstrators were reportedly... Еще detained. Footage from the scene shows riot police dragging demonstrators and deploying water cannons to disperse the crowd. According to Israeli law, ultra-Orthodox Jews are exempted from compulsory military service while they are study religion. However, they are required to appear at an enlistment office and present evidence of their studies and sign a deferral. At the beginning of July, a bill setting military enlistment quotas for yeshiva students passed its initial reading in the Knesset. The proposed legislation mandates that a minimum number of students enlist in the IDF, otherwise the government will reduce the annual budget for religious students.

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