As the crowds at a children’s playground near Israel’s parliament in the capital, Tel Aviv, have dwindled to a trickle, the excitement for the next few days of fireworks is at an all-time high.
“The crowds are so high, the people are so excited,” said Aimee Rabin, a 25-year-old student.
“They want to have fun, but the security guard says no, it’s dangerous.”
Rabin was among a group of kids at the playgrounds during the Israeli prime minister’s visit last week to the area.
The prime minister and the Israeli army’s chief of staff were among the thousands of visitors who were enjoying the fireworks displays.
On Monday, the Prime Minister’s Office announced that fireworks would be banned in all the countrys main amusement parks.
But not for the children.
The prime minister, Avigdor Lieberman, who took over the reins of Israel’s government after Benjamin Netanyahu’s death, is a strong supporter of the country’s fireworks industry, and has made fireworks his mainstay of his office.
“I want the children to have a fun, safe experience, so we will see how they feel, how they react to the new laws, and then we will change it,” Lieberman said at the time.
Lieberman has been vocal about his opposition to the law, which was enacted last week and takes effect this month.
“It is time for the authorities to decide the rules for public amusement parks,” Lieberman told reporters.
“The law is a clear violation of the rights of children, who can’t play with a toy or a firework,” he said.
Lieberman said the government is working on an amendment that would allow the use of firecrackers and other devices, and that fireworks should be allowed only at a designated location in a park.
The ban on firecracker use in public parks has sparked controversy among the country s fire safety experts, who say the practice is a dangerous and unsafe way to recreate and relax during the holiday season.
Rabin and other children at the amusement parks are adamant that they will not be affected by the new law.
“No, no, no,” said Rabin.
“I will play with firecracks because we want to.
We want to be safe.”
The law has also triggered a heated debate among the local Jewish community, which has been pushing for a ban on the use and sale of fireworks in their parks for years.
Israel has long been one of the worlds biggest fireworks markets, but many communities have long resisted restrictions on the sale of the popular toys, including at the parks.
Rabbi Tzvi Blau, president of the local Council of Jewish Communities, said he is in favor of the ban on sale of fireworks at his communities amusement parks, but not for kids.
“We are against the sale at our parks.
We are against selling firecrashes, we are against fireworks, and we are opposed to fireworks,” he told The Associated Press.
“We do not want them to be allowed to play and enjoy, they are not allowed to be a part of the celebrations.”
The prime minster’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Lieberson’s office told the AP that the government will “evaluate the impact” of the new rules on the amusement park industry, but it declined to comment further.
Rabak Hamed, an official at the Israeli Tourism Authority, said the country has seen a spike in the number of visitors to the parks since the ban was passed.
He said the ban is a “significant factor” in the increased numbers.
Hamed said the new ban on fireworks will not change the appeal of the park.
“They will continue to be able to sell firecrackles and other toy fires,” he added.
“But I think it will make them less popular and less safe.”