Haaretz: Gay Couple Petitions Israel's High Court of Justice to Recognize Their Marriage
A homosexual couple filed a petition on Tuesday with the High Court of Justice demanding that the Population Registry, a branch within the Interior Ministry, register them as a married couple.
The couple, attorney Jonathan Herland, a 29-year-old Canadian who immigrated to Israel four years ago, and Ayal Walerauch, 26, have lived together for two years. In July 2005 they wed in a civil ceremony in Toronto. However, the Interior Ministry refuses to recognize their marriage.
In the petition, Herland and Waleroch write, "By refusing to register the petitioners as a married couple, the Population Registry deviates from its authority, behaving with unlawful discrimination against the petitioners and same-sex couples in general."
In March, two homosexual couples petitioned the High Court under similar circumstances. Both couples married in Canada, and had the marriages approved by Israeli consuls there.
In their petitions, submitted by Dan Yakir of the Association for Civil Rights in Israel, the couples argue that when the Population Registry is approached to change a person's marital status, High Court precedent forbids the Registry from making religious considerations as long as the action has been legally recognized abroad.
The petitioners maintained that this principle holds true in spite of the fact that Israel does not recognize same-sex marriages that take place within the state.
The court will hold hearings on these couples' petitions in two weeks.
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