Hospital (illustrative)
Hospital (illustrative)iStock

Sephardic Chief Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef sent a letter to Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit, requesting that he act to delay the implementation of a ruling which would force Israeli hospitals to allow hametz (leavened products) to be brought in over Passover.

In his letter, Rabbi Yosef requested to delay the implementation of the ruling by ten months, so as to allow the Knesset to enact legislation that will prevent offense to the Passover-observant public.

"Following the ruling, and with your approval, the Chief Rabbinate has submitted to the court, independently, a request to hold an additional hearing on this ruling, which later received your support," Rabbi Yosef wrote. "This is the place to thank you for standing at the Chief Rabbinate's site, and especially at the side of the Jewish public which wishes to observe Passover according to Jewish law - and this is the silent majority in the State of Israel."

"Unfortunately, in her decision...the Chief Justice decided to reject this request. I am therefore turning to you with a request that, as the Prosecutor, you turn to the court with a request to delay the implementation of this law, in a way in which it will not apply to this coming Passover, in 2021."

He added that due to the pandemic, the Knesset and Health Ministry had not had time to properly address the ruling.

"Following our submission of a request to hold another hearing, we hoped that the ruling - which has very problematic consequences for those who keep kosher and which would cause harm to those patients who will be prevented from spending Passover in the hospital due to the prohibition against hametz - would be changed, but as stated, our hopes were in vain," he added, requesting Mandelblit's approval to submit an urgent request to the court to delay the implementation of the ruling by ten months, "in a way that will allow the management of the new situation which was created because of it, including by way of legislation on the issue."