Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : February 7th 2014 Contents A42
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Friday, February 7, 2014
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JERUSALEM---Thousands of ultra-
Orthodox Jews blocked highways
across Israel yesterday and clashed
with security forces to protest gov-
ernment plans to draft them into the
military, police said.
The simultaneous rallies in numer-
ous locations caused large traffic jams,
said police spokesman Micky Rosen-
In Jerusalem, some 400 activists
tried to block the entrance to the city
but were dispersed with water cannons
and 15 were arrested. In the southern
city of Ashdod, the demonstrators
hurled stones at the police, injuring
two policemen. Rosenfeld said eight
protesters were arrested there.
Elsewhere, a major highway in cen-
tral Israel was blocked by about 2,000
protesters. Police on horses beat back
demonstrators with clubs and used to
stun grenades to clear the roads.
The riots follow a Supreme Court
ruling this week ordering funding halt-
ed to ultra-Orthodox seminaries whose
students dodge the draft. Finance Min-
ister Yair Lapid s freezing of the funds
sparked angry warnings from ultra-
Ultra-Orthodox Jews have for years
been exempt from military service,
which is compulsory for Jewish Israelis.
The arrangement has caused wide-
spread resentment among Israel s sec-
ular majority and featured prominently
in last year s election.
A new system that would gradually
reduce the number of exemptions and
require all to register for service awaits
The ultra-Orthodox have been
demonstrating against the plan and
condemned the court decision. They
claim the military will expose their
youth to secularism and undermine
their devout lifestyle.
The issue of army service is at the
core of a cultural war over the place
of ultra-Orthodox Jews in Israeli soci-
ety. The ultra-Orthodox, who make
up about eight per cent of Israel s eight
million citizens, have largely been
allowed to skip compulsory military
service to pursue their religious studies.
Older men often avoid the workforce
and collect welfare stipends while con-
tinuing to study full time. (AP)
Clothing being sold as cashmere
actually contains rat fur, it appears,
as Italian police arrest 14 people and
seize more than a million garments.
The Chinese-born suspects were
arrested in the Italian cities of Livorno
and Rome after a year-long investiga-
tion, and have been cautioned for fraud,
the Italian news agency ANSA reports.
The clothes claiming to be made of
cashmere contained a mixture of acrylic
and viscose, as well as "fur from rats
and other animals", judicial sources say.
Bogus merino wool, silk and pashmina
garments were also seized.
Counterfeiting is widespread in
China, in domestic and export markets,
leading Beijing to step up its efforts to
crack down on the practice.
Taiwan s Want China Times says
fake goods are a "way of life" in many
rural areas, with people having "no
choice but to accept counterfeit and
China s reputation for peddling fake
goods may be hurting its legitimate
industries elsewhere in the world.
According to the Arab News, Saudi
consumers may be put off by the "Made
in China" label, even on popular brands,
because they re worried the goods
might be fake. (BBC)
Israeli police officers on horses disperse a crowd of ultra-Orthodox Jewish men during a demonstration in
Jerusalem, yesterday. AP PHOTO
Ultra-Orthodox Jews protest
pending Israeli draft
found to contain rat fur
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