A teenage girl was attacked by a group of young yeshiva students at Ganey Tikva, a suburb of Tel Aviv.
The teen, who prefers to remain unnamed, told Yediot Aharonot daily that she was attacked on Sunday (30 December 2012) because of her ‘lesbian look’.
The 17 year old was walking down the street, a route routinely taken by her in the past two years, when she was mobbed and assaulted.
She said: ‘It was the middle of the afternoon.
‘I was wearing my headphones and I passed a bus stop for yeshiva boys.
‘There was a small group there. I passed them by and a few seconds later I started hearing yelling.
‘I took my headphones off and turned around, and realized that they were shouting at me.
‘They were yelling “lesbian” and “is it a boy or a girl?” and then they started throwing rocks at me.
‘Once they saw I was hurt they ran away. I didn’t chase them – I just got out of there.
‘I was shocked. I never thought something like this could happen.
‘I pass through this neighborhood every day. I did nothing provocative – it’s not like I was wearing the rainbow flag on my back. I was minding my own business. I wasn’t bothering anyone.
‘Why did they mob me? They were judging me based on my appearance – and they were right, the way I look isn’t misleading – but the fact that a woman has a short hairdo doesn’t mean anything.
‘I’m not active anywhere, they couldn’t have recognized me from anywhere. It was all about the way I look’.
The stones hit the teen’s face and bruised her.
She along with her mother filed a complaint with the Israeli police.
‘My mother is livid. She insisted that we file a complaint with the police and make this incident public. She’s right. This is 2013 – these things shouldn’t happen’.
The teen said that despite the attack she will not be intimidated: ‘I’m a little scared but I’ll walk through there again. I see no reason not to. They shouldn’t affect my life in any way’.
The police confirmed that a complaint was filed, saying that the matter was under investigation.
Rabbi Dr. Aharon Lichtenstein, a leading Orthodox scholar in Israel, recently called for more tolerance towards LGBT people.
Discriminating on the ground of sexuality is prohibited according to Israeli law.