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Israeli president Shimon Peres endorses same-sex marriage

Tuesday, December 3, 2013
APShimon Peres

AP
Shimon Peres

Israeli President Shimon Peres on Sunday endorsed same-sex marriage, saying “we must allow everyone to live as is natural to them.”

Peres’ remarks, reported in an interview with Ynet News, comes at a time when two bills aimed at legalizing same-sex unions make their way through Knesset (the Israeli legislature).

Peres said that “even a person who is a homosexual is a human being, and he has rights. We have no power to take away (their) rights.”

“We cannot take away someone’s rights because they are different. We cannot take away their right to breathe, right to eat or right to start a family. We must allow everyone to live as is natural to them,” he said.

Peres’ comments came in response to a new bill being promoted by the Justice Ministry called “Living together,” which attempts to regulate some form of a civil partnership between same-sex couples.

An additional bill aims to secure equal marriage rights to same-sex couples.

Peres, 90, made the statements in Guadalajara during a state visit to Mexico.

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84 more reader comments:

  1. Mazal tov!!! <3

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:41am
  2. Kol HaKavod Shimon Peres, good for you President Peres

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:41am
  3. du

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:42am
  4. h

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:42am
  5. Go!..go!..go!..

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:42am
  6. I like him even more.

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:42am
  7. Yes!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:43am
  8. Thank you Jesus!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:44am
  9. Jesus had nothing at all to do with it, that is YOUR religion, not ours.

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 10:10am
  10. Mary, Mary. I'm not saying Christianity is your religion. I however believe Jesus is/was God's physical form. I believe God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit are separate but one. So by me saying Jesus I was essentially referring to God. So if it makes you feel better: THANK YOU GOD FOR YOUR HAND OF JUSTICE AND EQUALITY!

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 6:31pm
  11. Shalom!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:44am
  12. Bravo pour celle autre belle victoire pour l’égalité pour tous!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:45am
  13. Я не живу там, но спасибо Израиль!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:45am
  14. Amazing! ANOTHER victory to our rights! Congrats!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:45am
  15. Put a smile on my face :3

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:46am
  16. How wonderful!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:46am
  17. Omg

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:48am
  18. I’m for equal marriage and all, but am I the only one who thinks it’s fucked up that marriage is apparently more important than the lives of millions of Palestinians? I’m Jewish and while marriage is an important thing in Judaism, it’s definitely not more important than the lives of millions of human beings…

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:50am
  19. throw the LGBT community a bone and they'll put the blinders on to (actual) human suffering

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 7:55am
  20. You are a sell out Artemis. Go to Israel and see how the Palestinians live and you'll shut your big yap fast.

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 10:06am
  21. ^Mary-Lou, i have comrades in Israel that are Palestinian, and they all have told me with even a few giving pics that they deal with racism from Jewish Israelis on a daily basis, along with a few of them actually being beat on.

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 11:30pm
  22. Yaaay

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:50am
  23. Niceeee

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:51am
  24. What! !!!!!!!!!! Yesssssssss. This made my night

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:51am
  25. this guy as is all israel is a piece of shit!!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:52am
  26. Wow such ignorance.

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 11:55am
  27. what is he doing to all the african refugees? look at what he has done to the people of palestine? you are the ignorant one my friend!! but with your name i would expect nothing less!!

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 1:50pm
  28. Da fuq William short?!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:53am
  29. Pay attention Mr Abbot (Prime Minister of Australia) this is how you do it!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:55am
  30. Mazel Tov’ it is attitudes like this that made the State of Isreal a role model for all for minorities and their rights.

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:56am
  31. HAHAHHAHAHAHAHHAHAH, they deport people who arent israeli jews (such as blacks and what not) and oppress palestinians, but hey keep on trying

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 7:54am
  32. Israel a role model for minority rights. Pull the other one.

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 8:28am
  33. Kamran actually Israel imported thousands of Ethopian Jews. But there is lots of prejudice against black people in some Arab countries.

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 11:52am
  34. And let’s keep this about marriage equality, not The rights of Palestinians, that is a separate battle..

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:57am
  35. agreed! :D

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 10:26am
  36. why?

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 1:50pm
  37. It's all human rights in my opinion, so it's actually the same battle. But I will applaud him in this step.

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 7:40pm
  38. the rights of Palestinians are just as important, no one is any less human, and to focus entirely on the rights of gays is selfishness at its best. all people no matter of race, religion, sexual orientation, etc. deserve equal rights. focus on human rights before you focus on the rights of yourself.

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 11:17pm
  39. shalom and this is why I must move and live in israel.

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 5:59am
  40. everyone but palestinians…

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 6:00am
  41. isn’t it still illegal for israeli to marry palastinian? what if it were a gay israeli/palastinian couple?

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 6:01am
  42. Never been to Israel :/ mother Russia is good enough for me

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 6:01am
  43. hope you don't mind but i pray for your safety always if you are living in russia. Because i've heard that gay discrimination there is worst. I pray for your safety my friend. :)

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 6:35pm
  44. Irit Batsry

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 6:03am
  45. That’s nice, but he’s still a war criminal.

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 6:05am
  46. I’m israelí And i’m so proud to rrad that he backs same sex marriage

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 6:06am
  47. yes….every country but us.

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 6:26am
  48. Is LBGTQ safe in Israel?
    Just an honest question
    Peace

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 6:27am
  49. i'm not sure because i haven't been there. But i watched a documentary about israel,and they say that israel is a gay welcoming country in the middle east,some call it "gay oasis" but that is specifically in israeli's territory,it's not the same in the palestinian territory.

    Replied on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 6:31pm
  50. Even between an Arab & an Israeli or between an observant Jew & a Jewish Atheistic ?

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 7:17am
  51. I’m actually proud to be Jewish. My temple accepts everyone and I’m happy. :)

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 7:24am
  52. Well I would hope so, it’s already legal there isn’t it?

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 7:29am
  53. Beautiful

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 7:31am
  54. I do like his emphasis on “natural”.

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 7:45am
  55. HELL YES

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 7:49am
  56. ARE THE ZIONISTS ON OUR SIDE NOW

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 7:50am
  57. israel is still a war crime virus state stealing land from the palestinians and committing war crimes

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 7:53am
  58. Always liked Simon Peres

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 7:56am
  59. Thank you President Shimon Peres שמעון פרס!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 8:14am
  60. I lived in Israel with my gay Israeli gay partner. I’m not Jewish and was never been so welcomed in a foreign country as I was in Israel. Even had a gay wedding where all the family came and not an eye lid flicked!!! Israel has its troubles and faults but it’s not as half bad as it is portrayed. It is more of a democracy than any ‘western’ country.

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 8:15am
  61. Thank you Mr. Shimon Peres for your support….!!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 8:59am
  62. :D Yay!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 9:14am
  63. yay! o/ i keep telling everyone israelis are awesome

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 9:20am
  64. Good Man God Bless him

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 10:28am
  65. …one of the last people on Earth with an opinion I give a shit about…

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 11:34am
  66. I love Israel :) good job

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 11:48am
  67. here is the thing, same-sex marriage is a non-issue in Israel… the real issue there is CIVIL MARRIAGE and that is the reason why they can’t push for same-sex marriage because of the backlash from hetero-couples who have different religions and can’t marry because israel refuses to allow civil marriage…

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 12:47pm
  68. Mazaltov Shimon Peres!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 1:21pm
  69. You should have been the first ones to have done this.

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 1:33pm
  70. :)

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 2:18pm
  71. I could give a fuck less if he supports us. Stop the war with the Palestinians.

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 2:25pm
  72. Thank you!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 2:53pm
  73. Kudos to him!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 3:08pm
  74. very smart

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 3:30pm
  75. BUT the USA still can’t accept us!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 4:23pm
  76. Good to hear!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 4:29pm
  77. I like how his choice of words ..

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 4:46pm
  78. amen! israel have been a gay welcoming country in the middle east,i should specify in the israeli’s territory..coz i watched in the news before that gays in palestinian territory are being discriminated so hard,so that’s why some of them are moving to israeli’s territory but still they are scared,scared not of being discriminated as gay but being caught by the cops bcoz their stay there is illegal.

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 6:21pm
  79. Amen!!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 7:23pm
  80. Religious superstition is dictating medical policy at Catholic hospitals, and placing women’s lives at risk. Doctors working at these hospitals are forced to follow policy set by Catholic bishops, even if that policy results in substandard medical care.

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 9:44pm
  81. I hope that people noted what the President said, “we must allow everyone to live AS IS NATURAL FOR THEM.” For the foaming at the mouth religionists: stop trying to force others into your warped notion of what is natural!

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 9:57pm
  82. Great, now if they could only stop illegally claiming Palestinian land…

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 10:04pm
  83. Israel will get my respect on the subject of supporting gay rights and endorsing same-sex marriage. but a more important issue and more pressing issue is that of the war on Palestine, Israel is built off of the stolen land that was taken from Palestine and is ethnically cleansing the Arabs in the area. it has been proven that Palestine has decreased in numbers and in land because of the terrorist acts of Israel. the bulldozing of Palestine houses, the bombs that are dropped in Gaza, the killing of Palestinian children, and so on. all war crimes and overlooked by the west and by the UN. i support equal rights, that goes for all no matter of their sexual orientation or their race or even their religion. when a person says they support equal rights it should not only be for gay people but for all people, even the innocent who die by the hands of war mongers.

    Posted on Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at 11:26pm