In 11th hour U-turn, gov’t asks High Court for extension to prevent mandated Haredi draft

Jeremy Sharon is The Times of Israel’s legal affairs and settlements reporter

In a last-minute U-turn, the government requests a half-day extension to the High Court’s deadline for filing a response to petitions demanding that the state immediately start conscripting ultra-Orthodox yeshiva students.

The Attorney General’s Office had filed a draft response asserting that the state would be obliged to begin conscription for such men on April 1 after a government resolution postponing drafting procedures expired but sent out the deadline extension request shortly afterward.

The government was supposed to have drafted an outline proposal for a law that would lead to an increase in ultra-Orthodox enlistment and pass it as a government resolution by Wednesday, but failed to arrive at a consensus over the explosive issue within the coalition.

The state’s request for an extension until 2 p.m. tomorrow afternoon appears to indicate that there will be a last-gasp effort to formulate some kind of realistic proposal to show the court by that time.

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