There was far more hate than love on display outside a wedding in Tel Aviv yesterday as hundreds of right-wing protesters denounced the marriage of Mahmoud Mansour, 26, a Muslim Arab man, to Jewish-born woman Morel Malka, 23. Police had to block the group of at least 200 protesters—some of whom shouted "Death to Arabs" through loudspeaker—from rushing the wedding hall, reports Reuters. A court had rejected Mansour's request for an injunction to ban the protest outside his wedding to Malka, who converted to Islam.
Four protesters were arrested at the demonstration, which was organized by a group called Lehava, an Israeli organization devoted to opposing marriages between Jewish woman and non-Israeli men. Before the wedding, a spokesman for the group denounced interfaith marriage as "worse than what Hitler did." But the couple had support from the wedding hall, which defied threats of boycotts to host the ceremony, and Israeli President Reuven Rivlin joined those condemning the protesters' behavior, Ha'aretz reports. "A red line exists between freedom of speech and protest and incitement," he wrote in a Facebook post. The couple "decided to marry in freedom in a democratic state," he wrote. "The incitement against them is outrageous and disconcerting, regardless of my own stance or the stance of others. Not everyone needs to celebrate alongside Mahmoud and Morel, but we all must show them respect." (Read more Israel stories.)