Ben Gurion Airport
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A new law has been passed in Israel barring entry to men who refuse to grant their wives a Get, or traditional Jewish divorce document.

Over the last few months, the bill was drafted and has since been passed through various Committee stages. Now, the Knesset has passed the bill, which will be enshrined in Israeli law.

The legislation was passed on the recommendation of the Conference of European Rabbis (CER).

The CER had previously urged the Knesset to pass an amendment to Israel’s divorce law, with the hope of alleviating the plight of Agunot, or “bound women” who are unable to remarry until they receive the necessary divorce document (the “get”) from their husbands.

Under the new law, a man who has been identified by a Diaspora Rabbinical court as a recalcitrant husband may be detained upon arrival in Israel. The amendment strengthens the power of Israeli law to force recalcitrant husbands to comply with the decisions of Diaspora Rabbinical courts and attend divorce proceedings. Detainment upon entrance to Israel acts as a deterrent to these men and will help to prevent divorce-refusal.

Reflecting on the new law, Chief Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt, President of the Conference of European Rabbis, said: “This is a huge step and we are incredibly proud that this idea has now been enshrined in law.”

“It is my fervent prayer that the new law will pave the way to hope for women who seek to live their life free of the shackles of an unwanted and dysfunctional marriage. Get -refusal is a form of domestic violence and the global Jewish community must act to protect its women. Israel is the only country whose Rabbinical courts have the power to pressure recalcitrant husbands and the new law will ensure that all men, regardless of their citizenship, feel the force of disgust from the global Jewish community.”

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