New York bans big Satmar wedding

The member state blocked a ceremony at which 10,000 guests were expected.

Tensions between Charedim and New York authorities persist. On Friday, the member state banned the wedding of a grandson of Zalman Teitelbaum, one of the two (antagonistic) chief rabbis of the Satmar sect, which was planned for Monday yesterday. 10,000 guests were expected, which is unthinkable in view of the rising infection rates among Orthodox. The order met with criticism from the official organizer, the Congregation Yetev Lev D’Satmar in Williamsburg / Brooklyn. The synagogue’s secretary, Chaim Jacobowitz, described the ban as an unfair attack and premature: they have already decided internally to forego a major event and will celebrate the ceremony with close friends and family.

The measure was unusual in that the New York State Secretary of Health, Dr. Howard Zucker, issued this personally and fined $ 10,000 per day. Dr. Zucker allegedly felt compelled to take this drastic step because the usual procedure with the authorities: a written warning, followed by bans and fines – in this case lasted too long and would not have prevented a major party on Friday. According to the “New York Times”, invited guests from the wider region were already on their way to the celebration when Dr. Sugar issued the ban.

A protest church service against the emergency measures of the city and state of New York is to take place in the Charedim district of Borough Park / Brooklyn this Tuesday. Many members of the community see this as unfair, if not anti-Semitic – Governor Andrew Cuomo wants to make an example of Jews (Link).

The situation remains complex, however. While the mood against Cuomo in Borough Park becomes increasingly hostile, he meets sympathy in Williamsburg and Kiryas Joel. The Satmar sect resides there. On Sunday, the governor held a conference call with leading figures from Satmar which was reported to have been friendly. Cuomo recalled the relationships between the Cuomo family and Satmar and other orthodox communities, which went back to the youth of his father Mario Cuomo: the future senator and governor of New York was a “Shabbes Goy” among the devout as a boy and always had only deep sympathy felt for these communities (Link).

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