Protests, mostly by members of the Gerrer Hasidic sect and members and supporters of the hard-line Sikrikim group, have been going on for weeks, with residents burning tires and garbage bins, and throwing rocks and other objects at police. But over the past few days police responded in force – much to the surprise of many protesters, witnesses said.
Among the tactics used by police was the deployment of undercover police dressed in hareidi garb who circulated among the protesters. When some protesters began throwing rocks at police, these “hareidim” quickly arrested them. Police have been using this tactic for several nights, and have managed to arrest dozens of protesters in this manner – a wave of arrests that has not taken place for many years, neighborhood veterans say.