The city of Tiberias ordered, this week, the closing of a Kinneret/Sea of Galilee beach with separate bathing facilities for men and women designed for the modesty needs of the religious community. During its 15 years of operation, the beach bustled with activity as a popular spot for religious and hareidi families to come to from all over the country.
Mayor Zohar Oved said the decision came after Knesset Interior and Environmental Protection Committee instructed the city not to charge an admission fee, making the operation of the beach a budgetary impossibility. Sources in the city say the Interior Committee's instruction grew out of a complaint by a member of the local religious council about the charging of admission. Religious-council member Pinchas Vaknin said it was illegal for the city to charge admission so he could not understand what the real reason was.