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Law of Return (1989)
Adopted at the 100th Annual Convention of the Central Conference of American Rabbis
Policies Headlines
Jun 1, 1989 -- LAW OF RETURN

WHEREAS, in 1988 in Jerusalem the Central Conference of American Rabbis resolved “that all converts to Judaism must be registered upon application as Jews under the Law of Return,” and called upon “the leaders of the Government of Israel to continue to make certain that the laws of the State, and the rulings of its Supreme Court, are duly and faithfully implemented”; and

WHEREAS, there are new cases pending of converts to Judaism who are being denied their rights under the Law of Return; and

WHEREAS, subsequent to the Israeli election of 1988 the need to form a government threatened to compromise the Law of Return as it now stands,


1. the Central Conference of American Rabbis offer its support and appreciation to that broad-based coalition of twenty-six Jewish organizations which formed to express united opposition to the proposed amendment. This coalition was uniquely qualified to speak to the needs of Kelal Yisrael. We urge that this coalition continue to study the issues and to coordinate strategies for the defense of Jewish religious rights in Israel; and

2. the Central Conference of American Rabbis express its outrage with those in the leadership of both major parties in Israel for contemplating an amendment to the Law of Return in exchange for the power to govern. We call upon ARZA, KADIMA and ARZENU to strengthen their efforts to establish working relationships and growing dialogue with a broad spectrum of Israeli leaders. We call upon the CCAR members, their synagogues and organizations throughout North America to articulate this position to Israeli visitors to local communities.

3. the Central Conference of American Rabbis call upon leaders of the Reform Movement to support all moves on the local, national or international levels, to stimulate productive dialogue among Orthodox, Conservative, Reconstructionist and Reform rabbis with regard to questions of personal status, and

4. the Central Conference of American Rabbis commend the UJA/Federation community for its highly effective efforts to defeat moves to amend the Law of Return.

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