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  • News Brief

    Rabbi Gad Navon, 55. was appointed Monday chief army rabbi. He replaced Mordechai Piron, who took a post in the National Security College. Navon, who was born in Morocco, is the first Sephardi rabbi in this position. He helped find the halachic solutions for allowing “agunot” (war widows), whose husbands’ bodies had not been found,… More ▸

  • Civil Marriage, Divorce Bill Kayoed

    A bill to establish civil marriage and divorce in Israel was struck from the Knesset’s agenda yesterday. Justice Minister Haim Zadok said the bill could not be considered because the government is bound by a status quo on religious matters. Meir Payil, of Moked, who introduced the bill, said that a recent survey by the… More ▸

  • RA Defeats Move to Replace Jewish Law and Standards Committee

    The 76th annual convention of the Rabbinical Assembly overwhelmingly rejected yesterday a resolution that would have “dissolved and replaced the Committee on Jewish Law and Standards with a new committee to function on an advisory basis.” The decision, made after a heated debate, was precipitated by recent rulings on the status of women in the… More ▸

  • Supreme Court May Review Controversial Ruling on Divorce Decree

    The Israeli Supreme Court indicated today that it might review a controversial ruling by one of it members which Deputy Attorney General Michael Cheshin claims is an infringement on the authority of Israel’s rabbinical courts. Dr. Shimon Agranat, president of the Supreme Court, said he would announce his decision within two weeks. Because of the… More ▸

  • Agunot May Be Free to Re-marry

    Hundreds of Jewish women whose husbands are missing since the Yom Kippur War, who are “agunot” in Jewish religious law, may be free to re-marry as a result of a special rabbinical court which decides in what cases an aguna may be considered a widow. Under religious law, an aguna may re-marry only if a… More ▸

  • Chief Rabbis Renew Hassle

    The smoldering differences between Israel’s Sephardic and Ashkenazic chief rabbis flared anew here last night when Sephardic Chief Rabbi Ovadia Yosef accused his Ashkenazic counterpart, Rabbi Shlomo Goren, of bias and discrimination in the appointment of rabbinical court judges and other appointments. Rabbi Yosef addressed a meeting of Sephardic rabbis and judges at which a… More ▸

  • Rabbi Yosef Hopes War Will Not Leave Any ‘agunot’

    Sephardic Chief Rabbi Ovadia Yosef said he hoped the Yom Kippur War would leave no ‘agunot’–women whose husbands are missing and may therefore not remarry under Jewish religious law. The Chief Rabbi disclosed that two months ago he initiated the establishment of a special rabbinic court to deal with war agunot. He heads the bet… More ▸

  • Women Urge Eased Halacha Rules

    Jewish women have petitioned rabbinical authorities to ease the hard-ships imposed on women by the present interpretations of halacha. Mrs. Alfred Rubens, past president of the international Council of Jewish Women, told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency today that petitions on behalf of 500,000 Jewish women throughout the world have been sent to rabbinical courts, rabbinical… More ▸