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Israel Grants
Adoption Rights to Lesbian Couple

Israel Grants
Adoption Rights to Lesbian Couple

Israel's High Court of Justice has granted adoption rights to a lesbian who lost a case in 1999 to adopt her partner's biological child.

Israel's High Court of Justice has granted adoption rights to a lesbian who lost a case in 1999 to adopt her partner's biological child.

Ruti and Nicole Berner-Kadish have dual citizenship to Israel and the United States, according to the Jerusalem Post. They were living in California when Ruti gave birth to their son, Matan, by artificial insemination. Nicole was certified as Matan's adoptive parent by the state in 1996. The following year, the family with their second child, Neveh, returned temporarily to Israel. When they went to the Interior Ministry to register Nicole as a parent, their request was refused. Representatives of the ministry told them Israeli law defined a couple as consisting of a man and a woman.

Current law recognizes foreign adoptions, marriages, and divorces as long as the certification is authentic, according to the article.

The couple, with the Association for Civil Rights in Israel, petitioned the High Court in 1999, to have Nicole registered as Matan's adoptive mother. The court ruled 2 to 1 that Nicole should be registered, but the state asked the court to hold a second hearing before an expanded panel of justices in hopes of reversing the ruling, the Post reports. The second hearing took place Sunday.

An attorney representing the government said that the Knesset, Israel's parliament, was in the process of passing a law that would nullify the case, allowing Nicole to adopt the children. However, the Post reports, High Court president Dorit Beinisch said the state has the right to argue against such a law. (The Advocate)

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