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2020 Israel Religion & State Index

2020 Israel Religion & State Index

We are proud to present you with Hiddush’s twelfth annual Israel Religion & State Index. This Index is published during a turbulent time in Israel’s history, in which the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and its severe impact upon the economy and society are interlaced with the strife-laden and unstable political system.


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Messing with the Law of Return again

Messing with the Law of Return again

MK Smotrich's bill seeks to limit the horizons of Judaism and close the gates of conversion to the largest Jewish denominations of the Diaspora

Minister Yankelevich, what about religious freedom for Israelis?

Minister Yankelevich, what about religious freedom for Israelis?

Speaking about the growing efforts at restricting kosher slaughter and circumcision rites in Europe, as well as litigation initiated at the European Court of Justice in Luxemburg, brought by Orthodox leadership to challenge the legality of such restrictive legislation, Minister Yankelevich spoke last week at the Knesset.

Religion and State issues not pushed under the rug

Religion and State issues not pushed under the rug

It is critically important to understand that despite the sense of urgency regarding Israel’s political, security and health concerns, issues of religion and state have not been pushed under the rug. They continue to be at the forefront of political controversy and in the headlines.

Israelis turn away from marrying in the Rabbinate

Israelis turn away from marrying in the Rabbinate

Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) recent release shows that while the Jewish population in Israel grows, the number of couples that marry under the auspices of the Chief Rabbinate is significantly and consistently dropping!

Hiddush takes on enlistment and the IDF

Hiddush takes on enlistment and the IDF

In recent weeks, Hiddush has been dealing intensively with a number of issues related to enlistment and the army, some of which have already matured to the point of filing lawsuits, some of which are follow-ups on Hiddush’s past litigation, and in some cases we are going through the legal pre-litigatory steps that will allow us to pursue litigation in the future if necessary.

Hiddush standing up in defense of Chabad

Hiddush standing up in defense of Chabad

Following demands by Or Yehudah municipal inspectors to local residents to remove a Chabad "Messiah Flag" from their home windows, threatening them with fines if not removed, Hiddush demanded that the municipality retract the illegal demand and ensure that similar measures be avoided in the future.

High Court override bill swatted down in Knesset - why?

High Court override bill swatted down in Knesset - why?

Lawmakers overwhelmingly voted down a bill Wednesday that would have limited the High Court of Justice’s power to strike down laws, after MKs from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party abstained from voting on the opposition measure.

Hiddush fighting for pluralism in Jerusalem

Hiddush fighting for pluralism in Jerusalem

The Jerusalem Municipality deleted the list of synagogues in the city from the municipality's website in order to avoid publicizing non-Orthodox synagogues and non-Jewish houses of worship.

What’s mine is mine, and what’s yours is mine

What’s mine is mine, and what’s yours is mine

Banning public transportation on the Sabbath is part of an existential confrontation over the soul of the State of Israel.

The “Who is a Jew” War is Back!

The “Who is a Jew” War is Back!

Join us for two upcoming webinars on the “Who is a Jew” saga, which is returning to center political and legal stage.

Shas CEO cannot simultaneously be CEO of state-funded educational network

Shas CEO cannot simultaneously be CEO of state-funded educational network

Responding to Hiddush’s demand – Israel’s Attorney General instructs Shas that the party’s CEO, Haim Biton, cannot simultaneously direct the State-funded vast educational network it founded

The Imminent Political/Legal Explosion

The Imminent Political/Legal Explosion

The ultra-Orthodox parties have pushed hard on the Prime Minister in their coalition negotiations. The amendment to the Draft Law is the only issue of religion and state relations that is spelled out in detail, not only in the agreements of the ultra-Orthodox parties with the Likud, but also in the Likud's agreement with Blue & White.

Let Marriage Freedom Ring!

Let Marriage Freedom Ring!

Today, Hiddush began a new campaign to allow marriage freedom in Israel. This is a collaboration between Hiddush and the School of the Arts in Musrara, Jerusalem.

On the legal front

On the legal front

Hiddush's activism in the legal arena has continued in the face of the Covid-19 crisis, as Israel's new government has been settling in. There will be much to do in the face of the ultra-Orthodox party's stranglehold over Israel's religion-and-state arena!

Civil Burial in Israel – If You Will It, It Is No Dream

Civil Burial in Israel – If You Will It, It Is No Dream

In a petition heard in the Supreme Court last week, Hiddush - For Religious Freedom and Equality demanded that the Ministry of Religious Services and the Israel Lands Authority allow an immediately available option for civil burial to the public, in agricultural localities (kibbutzim and moshavim), at least temporarily, until a full and permanent solution is provided.

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