Reform Movement petitions court against Safed rabbi

Petition asks that attorney-general prosecute Rabbi Shmuel Eliah for incitement against Arabs.

Eliyahu 311 (photo credit: Courtesy)
Eliyahu 311
(photo credit: Courtesy)
The Israeli Reform movement petitioned the High Court on Thursday to instruct the attorney general to charge the chief rabbi on Safed, Rabbi Shmuel Eliahu, with incitement for his religious ruling banning the sale or rental of apartments in the city to Arab Israelis.
"The lack of public officials' interest in the [racial] incitement and against [Israeli Arabs] is strengthening a campaign against the Arab population in Israel.
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The Israeli Reform's movement petition comes on the same day as Or Etzion's Rabbi Haim Druckman on explained the reasoning behind a new rabbinic opinion issued by him and signed by other rabbis, including Safed Chief Rabbi Shmuel Eliahu, generally allowing for the sale or rental of home to Israeli Arabs except in the case of security concerns.
Druckman spoke in particular about how he convinced Rabbi Eliahu to sign the new letter, saying "I related to him the importance of not giving a hand to our enemies [to use against us] to push us from our homes and cities." He continued, however, "If you have no fear due to security reasons, there is no problem [renting homes to Arabs]."