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Ultra-Orthodox Man Stabs Six In Jerusalem Gay Pride Parade

About 5,000 people were marching along an avenue when a man jumped into the crowd and plunged a knife into some of the participants, witnesses said.

Nice to know we're not the only Western country with bigoted religious whackjobs:

An ultra-Orthodox Jewish man stabbed and wounded six participants, two of them seriously, in the annual Gay Pride parade in Jerusalem on Thursday, with police saying the suspect was jailed for a similar attack 10 years ago.

About 5,000 people celebrating the event were marching along an avenue when a man jumped into the crowd, apparently from a supermarket, and plunged a knife into some of the participants, witnesses said.

"We heard people screaming, everyone ran for cover, and there were bloodied people on the ground," Shai Aviyor, a witness interviewed on Israel's Channel 2, said.

It was the worst attack in years on the event in Jerusalem, a divided city where the religious population is more prominent than in other parts of Israel and highlighted the tension nationwide among disparate social groups.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called it "a despicable hate crime", and President Reuven Rivlin warned that social intolerance could spell disaster for Israel.

Police said they arrested the suspected perpetrator, an ultra-Orthodox man. Spokeswoman Luba Samri said he was the same assailant jailed for the stabbing of three marchers at a similar Jerusalem event in 2005. Israeli media said the suspect had been released from prison several weeks ago.

The parade has long been a focus of tension between Israel's predominantly secular majority and the ultra-Orthodox Jewish minority, who object to public displays of homosexuality.

Many devout Jews, Muslims and Christians criticize homosexuality as an abomination of their beliefs. Gay marriages performed inside Israel are not recognized by the authorities.

Police and medics said the attacker wounded six people. Two were taken to hospital in serious condition, including a young woman, said a doctor at Shaarei Tzedek Hospital, where the victims were being treated.


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