Minister of the Interior Aryeh Deri has set a plan in motion to render the status of young men coming to study in Yeshivas in Israel equal to the status of those coming to universities, so that they will be able to get official "student" status in their home countries.
In the past, Israeli consulates throughout the world would bestow student status only upon those coming to study in Israeli universities, but not to those coming to study yeshivas. Thus, yeshiva students arrived as tourists and needed to settle their status in immigration and population offices in Israel.
Yeshiva students will now be able to avoid this process, which is often time-consuming, and continue their studies uninterrupted. It should be noted that until now it was absolutely necessary for yeshiva students to get their official student status in order to be able to extend their stay in the country.
Deri approached the Foreign Ministry, encouraging it to extend to yeshiva students the same benefits enjoyed by students studying in academic institutions. His efforts have borne fruit, and now young men will be able to go to the consulate in their home country, present documentation of their acceptance to yeshivas in Israel, and get their student status prior to their arrival in Israel.
Deri praised the change, saying, "Making the status of yeshiva students equal to that of university students has value in principle, not only in practice. We can't allow a situation where the status of someone coming to study Torah in Israel is lower than that of someone coming to university.
"The new arrangement gives justice to thousands of Jews, will make their lives a lot easier, and will free up much more time for Torah study, and this is especially important as we near the new Elul term," added the Minister of the Interior.