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      Mass Visit to Joseph’s Tomb

      More than 2,000 Jews from across the religious spectrum visit Joseph’s Tomb for nighttime prayers.
      By Maayana Miskin
      First Publish: 7/18/2012, 9:43 AM

      Jews worhip at Kever Yosef
      Jews worhip at Kever Yosef
      Samaria Regional Council

      More than 2,000 Jews from across the religious spectrum visited Joseph’s Tomb (Kever Yosef) in Samaria (Shomron) late Tuesday night.

      The visit was permitted in honor of the first of the Hebrew month of Av, which begins Thursday night. It was organized by the Samaria Regional Council and Shechem Echa, and IDF soldiers provided security.

      Among the worshippers were leaders of the Slonim and Apta Chassidic sects and the Kabbalist rabbi Rabbi Deutsch. Soldiers and Border Police officers joined the prayers as well.

      Samaria Regional Council head Gershon Mesika took part, and called to restore the holy site to Israeli hands full-time, not just on special occasions.

      “No healthy nation would agree to have such a central and holy historic site be under the control of its enemies, who desecrate it,” he argued. “The Israeli government needs to wake up and return to Joseph’s Tomb completely.”

      “If Shechem is so quiet thanks to IDF activity, so much so that the state helps the city when it comes to commerce, then the Jewish presence in Joseph’s Tomb can also be renewed, and included in the national program to bolster Israeli heritage sites,” he added.

      Mesika thanked IDF commanders for providing security for the event.