Daily Israel Report

Belgium: Israelis not Allowed to Name Daughter 'Jerusalem'

An Israeli couple in Belgium welcomed a baby girl this week, but were told the name 'Jerusalem' did not make the cut for valid baby names.
By Kochava Rozenbaum
First Publish: 8/21/2013, 11:50 AM

Newborn baby (illustration)
Newborn baby (illustration)
Israel news photo: Flash 90

An Israeli couple was told this week by the Brussels Municipality that they could not name their newborn daughter ‘Jerusalem’ since the name is not on the list of valid names permitted by Belgium, claimed the Daily News.

Elinadav and Hagar Hyman are both Jerusalemites and decided to name their first born, Alma Jerusalem, after the city they grew up in.

The parents were told ‘no’ by the officials in the city when they tried registering the name since Jerusalem is not included on a list of approved names for babies born in Belgium.

The Brussels city hall clerk told them that the name "Alma" passed, and even "Bethlehem" made the cut, but "Jerusalem" is ‘not a valid name for a child’.

The clerk at the municipal offices in Brussels did offer them a compromise. In order to get the name Jerusalem approved with a valid Belgium birth certificate, the couple will need to appeal to the Israeli embassy and have them write a letter confirming that Jerusalem is a valid name.

Until then, the infant will be left without a birth certificate and the parents will be left with frustration.

The family has been living in Brussels for three years; Elinadav works in the European Parliament while his wife works as a security agent with Israel's El Al Airlines. They say they both “miss the city of Jerusalem very much.”

The mother of the baby had noted that a man in line next to her wanted to give his son a name that was 25 letters long.