Shas leader attacks chief rabbinate candidate

Rabbi Ovadia Yosef calls Rabbi David Stav "an evil man"; comment follows Yosef's move to block Amar bill.

Rabbi Ovadia Yosef 311 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
Rabbi Ovadia Yosef 311
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
Shas spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadiah Yosef issued a fierce attack against candidate for the chief rabbinate Rabbi David Stav Saturday night, calling him "an evil man."
Yosef's comments come just days after the rabbi instructed Shas MKs to block the so called Amar bill which was designed to allow serving Sephardi Chief Rabbi Shlomo Amar to stand again for election.
The terms of the deal were for Amar to support Stav in return for Bayit Yehudi helping pass the legislation to enable Amar's re-election.
"This man is dangerous to Judaism, the Torah and the rabbinate," said Yosef in reference to Stav during his weekly Torah lesson.
"Rabbi Amar is an upright and righteous man by they are using his name to elect an evil man who is unfitting to be anything," Yosef continued.
"Suddenly everyone is shouting that they want Stav [as chief rabbi]; if he was a Talmud Hacham [learned Torah Scholar] they would hate him," the rabbi claimed.
On Sunday, the five members of the oversight committee for the chef rabbinate elections will be presented to the cabinet and are expected to be confirmed.
Once this body had been appointed it will no longer be possible to make any legislative changes to the process for electing chief rabbis. This will kill off once and for all any chance of Amar being able to stand again for chief rabbi.
The oversight committee will include for the first time two women, who have been appointed by Deputy Minister for Religious Affairs Eli Ben-Dahan, who emphasised his work in the past promoting women's advancement in society.
Dahan said that he hoped the process would lead to the appointment of a national religious rabbi.