Riot over Hasidic arrest

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The Independent Online

Ultra-Orthodox Jews clashed with police who tried using horses and water cannon to control the crowd in Jerusalem yesterday during a third day of rioting over the arrest of a mentally ill Hasidic woman who authorities say was starving her child.

Tensions are rising between authorities – who allege the woman starved her three-year-old son for years – and the insular ultra-Orthodox community that often resents outside interference in its affairs. The child is in hospital.

Tensions between authorities and ultra-Orthodox Jews, who make up a third of Jerusalem's residents, have been high since voters replaced an ultra-Orthodox mayor with a secular candidate last November.

In the wake of this week's disturbances, City Hall has cut off municipal services to some ultra-Orthodox areas, saying it cannot guarantee the safety of its workers. Police said 28 protesters were arrested and one officer was slightly hurt. The protesters burnt dozens of rubbish bins and garbage was strewn across the city's streets.

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