JERUSALEM (Aug. 3)
A special ministerial committee has decided that there is no way to prevent the completion of the Mormon Brigham Young University center now being built on Mt. Scopus in Jerusalem. Israel Radio announced the committee’s decision Sunday.
Chaired by Religious Affairs Minister of the National Religious Party, the committee in effect adopted the legal positions taken by Attorney General Yoseph Harish and his deputy, Yoram Bar-Sela, that the university had satisfied all legal requirements before commencing on the project.
Israel Radio said the committee would submit to the university strict conditions requiring that the center not engage in any missionary or para-missionary activities. The university’s elders, in Utah, have already given assurances to the government and the Jerusalem municipality that this indeed will be the case.
The university project has been the subject of fierce and sustained controversy here, with ultra-Orthodox circles, led by the Hasidic Rebbe of Gur, mounting incessant protests against the building, and the university’s Israel program, for its part, seeking to persuade moderate opinion that the center does not plan missionary activities.