Senior liberal rabbis call on Liberman to stand by promises on conversion

May 24, 2016 20:23


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Leading rabbis in the liberal wing of the national-religious community have called on Yisrael Beytenu chairman Avigdor Liberman to “stand by his electorate” and oppose any government attempt to weaken the standing of private Orthodox conversions should he join the coalition.

A ruling by the High Court of Justice in March gave de facto state recognition to independent Orthodox conversion courts, which the United Torah Judaism Party immediately promised to revoke through legislation. 

Last year, Liberman blasted the coalition for repealing reforms to the conversion system adopted by the previous government, and gave strong public backing to a new, independent network of Orthodox conversions courts, Giyur Kahalacha, when it was launched back in August 2015. 

Rabbi Shlomo Riskin, municipal chief rabbi of Efrat and one of the Giyur Kahalacha founders, noted on Tuesday that Liberman had been a strong advocate of boosting immigration from the former Soviet Union and said that he would be abandoning his electorate if he allowed the High Court’s ruling to be circumvented.

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