Netanyahu working toward IDF conversion compromise (JERUSALEM POST) By GIL HOFFMAN 12/14/10)
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Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu met with all sides in the
conversion controversy Monday ahead of a key vote on the issue in the
Knesset on Wednesday, when a bill upholding IDF conversions is due
for a preliminary reading.
Netanyahu, his bureau chief Natan Eshel, and coalition chairman Ze’ev
Elkin each conducted several meetings in an effort to bridge the gaps
between Israel Beiteinu on one side and Shas and United Torah Judaism
on the other.
“We owe it to these soldiers who sacrifice themselves for the state
to ensure that they will have the recognized conversions that they
seek,” Netanyahu told the Likud faction Monday. “We are working on a
compromise but if one cannot be reached by Wednesday, we will enable
the bill to pass.”
Israel Beiteinu called a press conference for Tuesday, in which party
chairman Avigdor Lieberman is expected to vent his anger at Netanyahu
and issue new threats to the coalition.
Chief Rabbi Shlomo Amar is expected to present a last-minute
compromise proposal when he returns from abroad Wednesday.
One possible solution is to form a committee of religious court
judges that would immediately begin issuing conversions under less
Renegade Shas MK Haim Amsalem told Channel 10 on Monday that he will
once again defy his party’s mentor, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, by voting in
“Shas should have embraced the soldiers rather than make things
harder for them,” he told religious affairs correspondent Avishai Ben-
“These soldiers sacrifice their lives, and only in their merit are
the yeshiva students are able to learn Torah,” Amsalem said. (© 1995 -
2010 The Jerusalem Post. 12/14/10)
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