Transportation Ministry cancels dozens of bus lines that had been operating on Shabbat

A policy of many years of 'looking away' from dozens of lines that operated on Shabbat has ended . Lapid fumes: 'We won't give in.'

Sara Rubenstein ,

Egged bus (illustrative)
Egged bus (illustrative)
Meir Sela

Israel's Transportation Ministry recently canceled dozens of bus lines that began operating before Shabbat ended and brought forward the starting times of bus lines that had been embarking on their routes shortly before Shabbat, Ynet revealed on Thursday night.

The Transportation Ministry has apparently had a policy for many years of "looking away" from the fact that hundreds of bus lines began their route before Shabbat ended or began their routes shortly before the onset of Shabbat.

"We have chosen to consider the religious public in places where it's possible without compromising the routine of the secular public," an official said. "People need to understand that we're implementing government policy."

Transportation Minister Bezalel Smotrich responded on Twitter to the report: "The National Public Transport Authority is acting professionally and with a hand on the pulse of Israeli citizens. There is a status quo on the issue of Shabbat and it's not changing. To all the haters of religion who are striving to create spins and storms, breathe deeply. There is someone who truly cares about public transportation."

Blue and White chairman Benny Gantz responded by saying: "The State of Israel is a Jewish state and not a state of Jewish law. We'll win and take care of this - everyone will be able to live the way they want.

Blue and White number two MK Yair Lapid said: "There will be a different government and a different status quo. We won't give in to them."