European Rabbis Propose ‘Ground-Breaking’ Law To Hlp Agunos


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aguThe Knesset is considering ground-breaking new legislation proposed by the Conference of European Rabbis (CER) at their meeting in Berlin in 2013. The legislation will help innumerable women across Europe who are currently Agunos.

Although all Batei Din already have powers against men who withhold a get, previously the laws of Agunos have left many women around the world stranded when their husbands have ignored Rabbinic instructions. The CER has proposed that Israeli Batei Din should have civil powers to place sanctions on offenders no matter where they are in the world, which would be acted upon if they were to travel to Israel. It is hoped that this would act as a deterrent against the shameful practice of refusing to give a get to one’s wife.

In practice this would mean that civil sanctions, including a jail term, could be issued against the husband. If he were ever travel to Israel, police would have the power to arrest him upon his arrival.

CER is urging all those with an interest in this topic to support the bill through the Knesset.

Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt, President of the Conference of European Rabbis: “In an ideal world this kind of legislation would never be necessary yet we believe that this legislation is a tremendously important step forward in safeguarding Jewish women and hope that it goes some way to overcoming the problem of Agunos around the world.”

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  1. #1: It is exactly that. The get isn’t worth the paper its written on.

    The Israelis already tried this 15 years ago. An American named Seymour Klagsbrun who didn’t give his American wife a Get in America went to visit Israel. Israel refused to let him leave the country unless he gave her a Get. In response the U.S. State Department issued a travel warning against Israel and successfully pressured Israel to let the American return the to the U.S. without forcing him to give any religious divorce.

  2. I recommend that all interested parties obtain a copy of Rav Tzvi Gartner’s sefer entitled, Kaffiyeh B’Get (no it wasn’t written by Yassir Arafat after he converted and earned smicha). It is the “last word” on this question. Rav Gartner sits on the bais din of Rav Asher Weiss in Ramot.

    By the way, in the same jail as the mean-spirited rasha get-withholders, let’s put the mean-spirited rashanta women who refuse to accept a get to prevent their husbands from remarrying. Don’t tell me it never happens because it happened to my relative. In the third wing of the jail, let’s put all custodial parents who deny court-ordered visitation to their ex-spouses.

    Hashem yerachaim. Shalom al Yisrael.

  3. Ujm:shavua tov.No one is claiming that a get should be issued at will( (even if this would be halachacally correct). My point is that you cannot claim “me-useh” every time a recalcitrant husband is “induced” to give a get.There obviously are many cases when some convincing can be done,

  4. There’s many sides to get fights. Can’t always call the husband a rasha. A lot if times it’s the wife’s fault or the parents fault. Unfortunately these are the worst fights and the issue bring out the worst in all sides.