Bill legalizing civil marriage in Israel submitted to Knesset

JERUSALEM (JTA) — A bill that would legalize civil marriages in Israel was submitted to the Knesset.

Under the measure presented Tuesday by the Yesh Atid party, any two people — no matter their religion or sexual orientation — could enter into a civil union with the same legal status as any marriage.

The bill would create a secular, egalitarian marriage track outside the Chief Rabbinate and other religious institutions recognized by the state.

Yesh Atid leaders say the bill does not infringe on the state’s religious establishment.

Education Minister Shai Piron and lawmaker Dov Lipman — two Orthodox rabbis from Yesh Atid — were involved in writing the bill.

The measure is causing friction in the ruling government coalition, with the Jewish Home party already coming out against it and Hatnua party planning to submit its own version.

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