Photo: EPA
רפי פרץ ישיבת ממשלה
Photo: EPA
LGBTQ demonstrate calling for resignation of education minister
Rabbi Rafi Peretz told Israeli news show he supports conversion treatment of homosexuals prompting condemnations from politicians, social activists, teachers and even the prime minister who distanced himself from those views

Hundreds demonstrated in Tel Aviv calling for the dismissal of Education Minister Rabbi Rafi Peretz and urging Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to remove him from his ministerial post.




Earlier Netanyahu wrote on Twitter that Rafi Peretz's statements are unacceptable and "do not represent my government's position."


Benjamin Netanyahu at weekly cabinet meeting (Photo: EPA)
Benjamin Netanyahu at weekly cabinet meeting (Photo: EPA)

In a televised interview over the weekend, Peretz said he supports conversation therapy and has performed it. Health officials have said the technique is scientifically dubious and possibly even dangerous.


Minister of Education and leader of the Jewish Home Party Rafi Peretz (Photo: AFP)
Minister of Education and leader of the Jewish Home Party Rafi Peretz (Photo: AFP)


Peretz, who leads a nationalist religious party, drew wide condemnation Sunday for his comments.


Justice Minister Amir Ohana, who is openly gay, said "sexual orientation does not require therapy nor conversion. Preconceived notions and ignorance require therapy and conversion."


The remarks by Peretz sparked furor in Israel’s center-left opposition, which ahead of a September election has sought to cast Netanyahu as enabling Orthodox indoctrination in a country whose majority Jews mostly identify as secular or of less stringent religious observance.


The Mayor of Tel Aviv said Sunday that Peretz should be educated himself before being allowed to educate Israel's children criticizing the prime minister for appointing Peretz to the sensitive role of Education minister.


Israeli teachers from the LGBTQ community on Sunday sent a letter to the education minister, voicing their strong disapproval of his support for so-called gay “conversion therapy" and were to hold a demonstration calling for him to be fired.


LGBTQ teachers protest education minister    (Photo: Courtesy)
LGBTQ teachers protest education minister


Peretz himself reacted to the public outrage defending his position by claiming he himself did not administer conversion therapy and only referred people to "professionals" adding he knows it works. He pushed back at the criticism by saying his entire sector of the nationalist religious community is being attacked.


Rabbi Peretz is being supported by Rabbinical figures including members of the orthodox rabbinical council and non-profits promoting traditional families who call him to continue to speak his mind undeterred.


In the same interview which aired Saturday, Peretz said he would like to see the West Bank annexed by Israel but without granting its Palestinian residents any civil rights.




Peretz also stirred controversy last week when he compared intermarriage between Jews and non-Jews to a "second Holocaust."


פרסום ראשון: 07.14.19, 17:59
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