Regardless of Rabinowitz’s letter, the plan to create a pluralist prayer space includes an agreement that the central Western Wall plaza will be reserved for Orthodox prayer alone, making the rabbi’s request somewhat obsolete.

It is likely therefore that the rabbi’s letter is intended as a way of distancing himself from the plan, which he reluctantly agreed to during indirect negotiations, via then cabinet secretary Avihai Mandelblit, with WOW.

Although Litzman, Deri and Gafni voted against the plan in the government vote on it in January, they did not demand that it be rejected at the time.

Since then, however, they have come under severe pressure to act against it, and the deal threatens to lead to a full-blown coalition crisis, since both Deri and UTJ have threatened that they may topple the government if the plan is not revoked.