Minister of Religious Services (Shas) David Azoulai is now trying to circumvent the Chief Rabbinate of Israel, hoping to speed up elections for city rabbis in cities around the country, a move that is met with opposition by the Chief Rabbinate of Israel Council. Azoulai seems motivated by his desire to bring persons close to him and Shas into these prestigious civil service positions. The minister justifies his move however, explaining 2018 is an election year in Knesset and if the appointments are not made now, they will be significantly delayed, most likely until following Knesset elections and this would deprive the cities of required religious services.
After the Chief Rabbinate Council announced it does not share his desire for expedited elections for the posts, the minister signaled his willingness to take the Council out of the election equation.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)