Chief Rabbi HaRav Yosef Yitzchak, the Nasi of the Beit Din HaGadol, paskened that several Israelis abducted to Gaza can be declared dead.
HaRav Yitzchak issued the psak after a meeting in his office with senior IDF and security officials, forensic and health officials, Chief Rabbi of the IDF Eyal Karim and other Rabbanim, and the director of the Religious Services Ministry Yehudah Avidan.
The security officials presented their findings and data about the hostages in question to HaRav Yitzchak. The data includes, among other things, footage from surveillance cameras of the October 7th attack and testimony from released hostages.
The p’sak allows the families to sit shiva even without a levaya [as the bodies of the niftarim are being held by Hamas in Gaza] and is mattir the wives of the men who were declared dead to remarry.
Religious Services Minister Michael Malchiali said: “Lengthy and in-depth discussions with the heads of the security system, the members of the Forensic Medicine Institute, the Health Ministry, and the Ministry’s Director-General Yehudah Avidan enabled HaRav Yitzchak Yosef to reach his p’sak, which was carried out with special sensitivity in light of the circumstances and numerous ramifications. All of the employees of the office who acted and are still acting on this painful issue support the dear families at this difficult time and offer condolences for the deaths of their loved ones at the hands of the abominable Hamas murderers.”
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)