Tel Aviv-Jaffa Mayor Ron Huldai
announced that the city will allow all cohabiting couples to register
their relationship as married.
Huldai said that the move was in part
to protest the government's refusal to recognize gay and lesbian
“In honor of Pride Week, we decided
to challenge the government and allow couples to register on the
basis of a declaration,” Huldai
said on social media.
“We hope the government will also
enter the 21st century and advance in law the rights of
the [LGBT] community – the right to marry, to equal parenting, to
protection from hate crimes, and workplace bullying and more,” he
In Israel, the state is not involved in
marrying couples. Instead, the Chief Rabbinate marries Jewish
couples. Members of other faiths also must seek a religious wedding.
The Chief Rabbinate has refused to carry out same-sex or interfaith
marriages. Heterosexual couples who do not wish to have a Rabbinate
wedding must marry abroad and register their marriages in Israel.
Tel Aviv has a large LGBT community and
its annual Pride Parade attracts over 200,000 people, the largest in