JERUSALEM (AFP) – The Israeli government on Sunday approved a draft law which will spell the end of a system which has seen tens of thousands of ultra-Orthodox exempt from military service.
The draft bill, which passed in the cabinet and later in the day in the ministerial committee for legislation, still faces a series of votes in parliament before becoming law.
It stipulates that ultra-Orthodox Jewish men must either join the army or perform civilian service, and if passed it will be implemented over the next four years.
The new law seeks to amend the current situation in which ultra-Orthodox men receive exemptions if they are studying in religious seminaries.
Military service is compulsory in Israel, with men serving three years and women two.
But tens of thousands of ultra-Orthodox currently avoid army service by virtue of being enrolled in yeshivas or seminaries.
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