Shas MK Yigal Guetta resigns amid gay wedding controversy

Interior Minister Aryeh Deri speaks during a Shas party event in Jerusalem

Interior Minister Aryeh Deri speaks during a Shas party event in Jerusalem

An Israeli lawmaker from the Sephardic Orthodox Shas Party resigned from the Knesset after he was criticised for attending a gay wedding.

Guetta's presence at his nephew's marriage ceremony however, was enough to raise the ire of many Rabbinical figures in Israel's Orthodox community.

After announcing his resignation, Shas Chairman Aryeh Deri, conveyed his gratitude to Guetta as well as an openness for him to continue in some other role helping to advance the party's agenda.

Railing against the MK's "public desecration of Heaven", the rabbis demanded that the leaders of the Shas party "remove and fire" MK Yigal Guetta "immediately".

"We went together to the wedding, me my wife and my children, even though in general I don't tell my children where to go, but this time I told everyone "attendance is mandatory" and we went and celebrated with them", said Guetta, adding however that he told his children that the wedding was "forbidden according to Jewish law". "I have no leeway on this", he told Army Radio.

Source close to Guetta said the lawmaker had refused to apologise and chose to leave before being requested to do so by the party.

They wrote: "So-and-so told his entire family that they were required to attend the "wedding" of his nephew, which is a bad prohibition, among the most severe in the Torah". During the interview, he said that his nephew called him about two years ago and asked him to be the rabbi at the wedding.

She said: "MK Guetta made a simple human gesture and went to support his nephew at his wedding".

But among the country's conservative ultra-Orthodox community, homosexuality is considered a sin and publicly shunned.

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