Praying in Uman
Praying in Uman Yaakov Naumi/Flash 90

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu will hold another Knesset meeting regarding flights from Israel to Uman, Ukraine, ahead of Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish New Year).

During the meeting, Netanyahu will decide whether to allow travel to Uman this year.

Meanwhile, the haredi parties are pressuring Netanyahu to reach agreements with Breslov hasidim, and not to accept the recommendation of coronavirus czar Professor Ronni Gamzu to completely ban all flights.

Kikar Hashabbat quoted Interior Minister Aryeh Deri (Shas) who on Monday night said that "there are Breslov hasidim who have made enormous sacrifices during much more difficult periods in order to visit the grave of Rabbi Nachman. We need to reach an agreement which will allow those people the option of returning from Uman while adhering to the guidelines."

Also on Monday evening, Gamzu emphasized that Ukraine is a "red" country, where coronavirus infection rates are high. "I know people won't like my decision with regards to Uman, but they hired me to protect health. That's my job. We need to prevent the flights to Uman and we need, this year, to adapt our lives. It may be infuriating but I'm doing it only in order to save lives."

"Uman already has 2,000 people and there are those who will fly via other routes. But huge numbers of people flying endangers the people and the worshipers." He added, "It's not just about one person and himself, it's each person versus his friends and family."

Apologizing for calling Uman a "party," Gamzu said, "I shouldn't have used the word 'party.' It could be that in the letter I sent to the Ukrainian president there were a few sentences which should not have been written. But it's my obligation to come with the truth to all those who are making decisions."

"Let's admit the truth: It's impossible to keep the guidelines in Uman. We know the pictures from every other year. This situation will cause a mass infection. I don't understand, how are Breslov ignoring this?"

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