This is a notice written in 1954 by the mayor of Jerusalem, Yitzhak Kariv, calling for an end to the riots regarding Shabbat observance in the city. The letter informs residents that a committee will be appointed to examine the issue and restore peace to Jerusalem. The notice is directed at all residents of Jerusalem from all sectors, requesting them to respect the city’s sanctity and refrain from any actions which cause tension. At the end of the letter, the mayor notes the holiness and centrality of Jerusalem for all Israelis.
Both before and since the establishment of the state of Israel, demonstrations have been organised by the ultra-Orthodox Jewish community, protesting the desecration of Shabbat. The demonstrations in Jerusalem have always been especially large, vocal, and sometimes violent due to its large ultra-Orthodox population and special status as a holy city.
The JTA (Jewish Telegraph Agency) reported the clashes that took place in Jerusalem on November 23, 1954:
Premier Moshe Sharett will personally investigate the recent clashes in Jerusalem arising from attempts by ultra-Orthodox elements to prevent the movement of traffic on the Sabbath, he told the Cabinet.
Mr. Sharett’s intervention came after a clash here Saturday when a group of young men from towns in the Jerusalem area came into town in trucks and clashed with religious groups attempting to block traffic.
Minister for Religion Moshe Shapiro, who raised the issue at the Cabinet meeting, said that the settlement youth had invaded several synagogues but had been thrust out by the worshippers. He said it was “intolerable” that anybody but the police should deal with the religious demonstrators.
Yitzhak Kariv, a member of the religious-Zionist Mizrachi party, served as the mayor of Jerusalem from 1952 to 1955.