Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister has backed a bill limiting the number of calls to prayer from mosques.
Netanyahu, who spoke as a ministerial committee was to discuss the draft bill, said that he would support a move labeled by some as unnecessarily divisive, reports the Dawn.
“I cannot count the times – they are simply too numerous – that citizens have turned to me from all parts of Israeli society, from all religions, with complaints about the noise and suffering caused to them by the excessive noise coming to them from the public address systems of houses of prayer,” the prime minister said.
Israeli media reported that the bill would stop the use of public address systems for calls to prayer.
However, the government watchdogs have called the proposal a threat to religious freedom.
The draft bill applies to all houses of worship.
Israel’s population is roughly 17.5% Arab, most of them Muslims, and they accuse the Jewish majority of discriminating against them.
East Jerusalem is also mainly Palestinian and traditional calls to prayer by muezzins through public address systems can be heard in the city.