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Will the Knesset silence call to prayer?

Israeli legislators are advancing a bill to ban calls to prayer at mosques via loudspeakers.
The four minarets of a new mosque are seen in the Israeli-Arab village of Abu Ghosh, near Jerusalem November 22, 2013.In a Holy Land rich with religious sites, the new Abu Ghosh mosque is rare - as is the hilly village from which it rises. Bankrolled largely by Chechnya and named after its former leader Akhmad Kadyrov, who was slain by Islamist militants in 2004, the glimmering shrine tells of this small Israeli Arab community's historical ties to the restive Russian province. Picture taken November 22, 201

On Nov. 13, the Knesset's Ministerial Committee on Legislation will debate a proposed bill banning muezzins from using public address (PA) systems, that is, loudspeakers, to call the faithful to prayers. The legislation was proposed by Knesset member Moti Yogev of HaBayit HaYehudi and co-sponsored by Merav Ben-Ari of Kulanu and Miki Zohar and Nurit Koren, both from Likud.

Anastassia Michaeli of Yisrael Beitenu had proposed a similar bill five years ago. At the time, she claimed that the law was not directed at Muslims, but was simply intended to preserve the quality of life of Jews living near mosques and therefore disturbed by muezzins’ early morning calls to prayer.

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