Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein in a Galei Tzahal (Army Radio) on Wednesday, 4 Tammuz, expressed opposition to the chareidi parties and their vision for state giyur. He also opposes private batei din for giyur.
In the interview with Galei Tzahal, he began by questioning why a state-appointed rav of a city or community is not qualified to perform giyur. He feels these rabbonim may know the individuals involved and their methodology would result in a more favorable process that is friendlier to the convert. He sees no reason why a private beis din cannot convert a person and why this must be exclusively in the hands of the Chief Rabbinate.
Edelstein addressed the matter in response to recent statement from Rishon L’Tzion Rabbi Yitzchak Yosef Shlita, l who met with dayanim and expressed his concerns vis-à-vis giyur and Reform and Conservative Judaism. Rav Yosef calls for an unrelenting war to prevent any non-frum stream of Judaism from obtaining a foothold in Eretz Yisrael.
Edelstein expressed his support for private batei din, and is therefore against the State Giyur Bill which is supported by the chareidi parties.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)