Scholars from Israel, the United Kingdom, and Ukraine discuss a landmark case, ‘believed to be the first time the criminal justice system in the UK has been used on behalf of an agunah – a “chained” woman left unable to remarry according to Jewish law because her husband denies her a religious divorce.’*
Evoked in this case are issues not only of Jewish and British law, but of family law, religious autonomy, and women’s rights, with ”wide implications within the Orthodox Jewish community and potentially in other communities, when religious laws are abused . . . .’**
Background for the issue:
- * Landmark case sees woman obtain get after launching private prosecution against husband for coercive control: ‘For the first time in the UK, a private prosecution was successfully commenced against a get refuser.’
- **Legal first as jail threat makes man grant ‘get’: New laws against ‘controlling behaviour’ forces Jewish man to agree to religious divorce in UK legal first.
- Jewish women are being erased: ‘When a woman is not seen, her voice is not heard, and her needs are not met. She is simply less than a full person.
- Beth Din “names and shames” man who refuses his wife a get.
The creation of a new Orthodox Church of Ukraine in January 2019 provoked turmoil in the Global Orthodoxy and even impacted U.S.-Russian relations. In a new Talk About Conversation marking the first anniversary of this event, Elizabeth Clark introduces posts by Dmytro Vovk, Andriy Fert, Catherine Wanner and Tetiana Kalynychenko, Andrii Krawchuk, Robert Blitt, and Stanislav Panin.
As background for this series, see, for example:
- The Future of Orthodox Christianity in Ukraine – Berkley Forum Dicussion (Georgetown University) | December 2018
- Law and Religion Headlines, including the following from the Religion Information Service of Ukraine (RISU)
- Ukrainian autocephaly. After one year | 13 September 2019
- ROC breaks off the communion with Patriarch of Alexandria because of their recognition of OCU – the decision of the Synod | 26 December 2019
- Ecumenical Patriarch: The most important moment for the Patriarchate in 2019 was the granting of the Autocephaly to the Church of Ukraine | 26 December 2019
- Ukrainian Orthodox Church 2019 – results of the year | 2 January 2020
- U.S. congratulates OCU on anniversary of receiving Tomos | 9 January 2020
Two Conversations on Religious Freedom and Security
‘On September 19, 2019 the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe’s Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (OSCE/ODIHR) released its Freedom of Religion or Belief Policy Guidance. Based on the OSCE comprehensive concept of security, the policy guidance provides guiding principles and a number of recommendations to address a number of notable issues at the intersection of freedom of religion or belief and security in the OSCE region. Based on the OSCE comprehensive concept of security, the policy guidance provides guiding principles and a number of recommendations to address a number of notable issues at the intersection of freedom of religion or belief and security in the OSCE region.’The primary audience for this report is policymakers concerned with security and with religion, but religious communities, civil society organizations, and media will also find the analysis and practical guidance useful.’
— Dmytro Vovk, Talk About blog editor and member of the OSCE/ODIHR Expert Panel.