2,000 join Jerusalem Pride

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Around 2,000 people joined a largely peaceful pride march in Jerusalem yesterday.

The march has attracted violence in the past and 1,000 police officers were on the streets.

There was some disruption and one man, said to be an ultra-orthodox Jew, was arrested for throwing bags of “foul smelling liquid” at gay marchers.

A small number of anti-gay protesters held placards condemning homosexuality as the march passed.

Some attempted to bring donkeys to illustrate their view of gay sex as a “beastly act”, AFP reported.

Protest organiser Barukh Marzel told Reuters: “The march of the donkeys today in Jerusalem symbols the humiliation and disgracing of the holiness of Jerusalem by the leftist liberal organisations and the supreme court in Israel, that lets the homosexuals and other diseases to come and march in Israel.”

Openly gay MP Nitzan Horowitz spoke at the march, calling it “a symbol of the struggle for freedom in Jerusalem.”.

Many marchers held placards referring to Israel’s housing crisis and other protests on the issue were held across the country.

Six years ago, an ultra-Orthodox Jew stabbed and injured three marchers at Jerusalem Pride.

Eighteen people were arrested for trying to disrupt last year’s parade. In December, Michael Naky, 35, was given a six-month community sentence for attempting to set off a makeshift bomb.

The event is always far smaller than Tel Aviv Pride, which is the Middle East’s largest and most significant gay rights event.