Beach Segregation Angers Secular Bathers

A stretch of beach in Ashdod has become a bone of contention between residents of the southern port city in recent weeks after the municipality chose to shut it down, seemingly in order to shield religious bathers from secular ones.

Like most Israeli cities located on the shore of the Mediterranean, Ashdod has a sex segregated beach that caters to religious bathers. But recently a new fence has been installed just 200 meters south of the walled-off area, effectively creating a buffer zone between the restricted beach and the co-ed waterfront frequented by the secular public.

Signs warn beachgoers that the area was closed to the public at the order of the Ashdod Court of Justice.

While the northern boundary of the religious beach remains without such a “safety zone,” municipality workers often ask secular bathers to avoid sitting close to the fence.


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