Israel: Minister quashes proposed gay surrogacy law

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The Israeli housing minister has appealed against a bill which would have allowed gay couples access to surrogacy, stopping it in its tracks.

Uri Ariel, minister for Housing and Construction, said the bill creates “moral and ethical” questions about “what a family in Israel should look like”.

The bill, first announced in January, would have stopped the need for gay Israeli couples to go abroad to adopt.

Health Minister Yael German, who proposed the law, said today: “I felt they had stuck a knife in my back and heart when I heard about the appeal filed by Uri Ariel, the Housing Minister, against [my] surrogacy law.”

Ariel is a member of the Jewish Home party, which is part of a broad coalition government with German’s Yesh Atid and two others.

Tthe bill had narrowly gained approval from the Ministerial Committee for Legislation, which means coalition members were obligated to vote for it, if Ariel had not appealed.

According to Haaretz, German said Ariel was attempting to “bury” the law by appealing against it in cabinet, as controversial bills without agreement are rarely discussed a second time.

However, she will not be deterred, saying: “I’m going to do everything that democracy and law allow to pass it.”

Minister Uri Orbach, also of the Jewish Home party, said: “This bill is dangerous. Members of heterosexual couples will be hurt. Gay couples have a better chance of obtaining the necessary money and competing because they are two men and they earn more.”