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Committee Studies Problem of Personal Status of Karaites in Israel

The first meeting was held here today of the public committee set up by the Government to study the problem of the personal status of the Karaites, a dissident ancient Jewish sect that has survived in Israel and elsewhere after living for centuries apart from the main body of Jewry. While Jewish religious teaching recognizes rabbinic authority, the Karaites follow only the Scriptures.

The public committee was set up after problems arose in connection with possible intermarriage between Jews and Karaites which has been banned by the rabbinic authorities for centuries. In the initial meeting today, the committee, which dealt only with procedural matters, asked Religious Affairs Minister Zorach Warhaftig for information on the Karaite issue.