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Israel to allow surrogacy for same-sex couples

The country's Health Minister says the changes will come into effect on 11 January.

By Alastair James

Words: Alastair James; pictures: Wiki

Israel has lifted restrictions on surrogacy for same-sex couples in what is being held as a “historic day”. 

The change was announced on Tuesday (4 December) and will also allow single men to become parents.

It follows a ruling from the country’s High Court in July which said that the ban was unlawful and should be lifted within six months.

“A historic day”

Reuters reports that Israel’s Health Minister, Nitzan Horowitz, told a press conference: “It is a historic day for the LGBTQ struggle in Israel”. 

On Twitter, he added that the changes will come into effect a week from today, on 11 January, which gave him “great pride and excitement”. 

A petition to allow same-sex couples to use a surrogate was first launched in 2010, 11 years ago.

Etai Pinkas Arad and Yoav Arad Pinkas brought the case to Israel’s top court in 2010. In February 2020 it was ruled that excluding same-sex couples was illegal and the Israeli parliament was given until September to create a new law.

Israel’s new coalition government then asked the court to rule on it resulting in yesterday’s announcement.

The July ruling was met with a fair amount of skepticism with 32-year-old Yaniv Levy telling the Haaretz newspaper there would be bureaucratic challenges ahead that would “make us have conversations with social workers and psychologists just to get a license to be parents.”

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