Bill forbidding minors to marry passes hurdle

Ministerial panel approves legislation that would raise legal marriage age by one year to 18.

By
March 4, 2012 13:08
1 minute read.
Illustrative image

Rabbi preforming wedding in Jerusalem 311. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later

The legal age for marriage could be raised to 18, according to a bill approved for government support by the Ministerial Committee for Legislation on Sunday.

The initiative, proposed by MK Yariv Levin (Likud) and Deputy Minister Gila Gamliel (Likud), would raise the current legal marriage age by one year, if it passes a preliminary vote and three readings in the Knesset.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


MK Haneen Zoabi (Balad) proposed an almost identical bill, which was not discussed by the Ministerial Committee on Sunday, as it had rejected it last year. Zoabi attempted to resubmit the legislation to the committee, but it refused to accept it again.

Both Zoabi’s and Levin’s proposals will be brought to a preliminary vote in the Knesset on Tuesday. Zoabi said she hopes the two bills will be combined.

The current minimum age for marriage, 17, was legislated in 1950 and has since remained unchanged due to opposition by haredi and Arab parties.

According to Levin, in tribal and traditional societies, such as Beduin tribes, young women are forced to get married and are seen as property passed from father to groom.

Such young brides are often unable to finish high school or continue their education, which limits their career options and ability to escape poverty.

JPOST VIDEOS THAT MIGHT INTEREST YOU:


“This is a historic step that will fix an injustice done to minors, mostly females, who marry young,” Levin said. “Should the bill pass, it will save thousands of young women from being forced into marriage, poverty and domestic violence and give them an equal opportunity to start their lives as they wish.”

Zoabi’s bill was sent to the Ministerial Committee along with a letter of support from 26 women’s organizations, representing many sectors of society, including Israeli Arabs and national-religious Jews.

According to the letter, 17,447 girls under age 18 were married from 2000 to 2008. Of those girls, 2,042 were under age 17.

Last week, the Belz hassidic sect held a party with thousands of revelers for the oldest grandson of Rabbi Yissaschar Dov Rokeach, the Belz rebbe, who was engaged at age 17.

MK Yisrael Eichler (United Torah Judaism), the representative of the Belz hassidic sect in the Knesset, had no comment as to how the legislation would affect the impending nuptials in the rabbinic dynasty.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Riot
August 31, 2014
Rioting resumes throughout east Jerusalem Saturday night

By DANIEL K. EISENBUD