Over 700,000 mourn influential Israeli rabbi
JERUSALEM (AFP) - More than 700,000 people took to Jerusalem's streets on Monday to mourn the spiritual leader of Israel's Sephardic Jews, in an unprecedented procession for an influential figure who died after surgery.
Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, 93, wielded enormous influence among Israeli Jews of Middle Eastern and North African ancestry but courted controversy with his outspoken views.
He had been in and out of hospital for months and undergone heart surgery, before dying in hospital on Monday.
The mourners, mostly ultra-Orthodox Jews and with men separated from women, gathered outside Yosef's seminary, before heading to his burial in Jerusalem's conservative Sanhedria district.