Jerusalem’s Zion Square to be renamed to honour teen fatally stabbed at gay pride parade

JERUSALEM (JTA) – Zion Square in downtown Jerusalem will be renamed to honour the teenage girl who was stabbed to death last summer at the city’s gay pride parade.

The area will be called Tolerance Square in memory of Shira Banki, 16, who was killed in July by a haredi Orthodox assailant who had just been released from prison for committing a similar attack at the 2005 gay pride march. Five others were injured in the 2015 attack.

Banki, a high school student from Jerusalem, was marching to support her gay friends. Her parents donated her organs.

The Jerusalem municipality earlier this week announced a competition to redesign the site, which is being renovated.

“Zion Square, in the historic heart of downtown Jerusalem – which for many years attracted protests, demonstrations and clashes – will soon become a square to represent tolerance and mutual respect in the spirit of the late Shira Banki, murdered during the Gay Pride Parade,” the municipality said in a statement.

The square is located on Jaffa Road adjacent to the popular Ben Yehuda pedestrian mall.

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