Haredi man assaulted after asking woman to move to back of bus

JERUSALEM (JTA) — A young man punched a haredi Orthodox man who asked a woman to move to the back of a public bus in Jerusalem.

The incident Thursday afternoon occurred in the haredi neighborhood of Givat Shaul. The bus line is not one of several voluntarily segregated lines run for haredi, or fervently Orthodox, Jews.

The assailant, described by the Israeli news website Ynet as secular, punched the haredi man in the face and pulled his beard before fleeing.

The woman told police that she was asked to move to the back of the bus but did not feel that it was a forceful request, according to Ynet.

The haredi victim filed a complaint against the assailant with police.

The incident comes a week after haredi Orthodox assailants in Beit Shemesh smashed the windows of a public bus after a woman was asked to move to the back and the driver called police.

Israel’s Transportation Ministry maintains a voluntary segregation plan for a number of public buses under which riders may sit separately if they desire, but passengers cannot pressure other passengers to sit separately. The plan was approved by Israel’s Supreme Court.