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  • Israeli right-wing protesters outside a military court for the soldier who shot an unarmed Palestinian.

    Israeli right-wing protesters outside a military court for the soldier who shot an unarmed Palestinian. | Photo: Reuters

Published 5 May 2016

An Israeli requested that God be ordered to keep his distance. Perhaps not as crazy as it sounds, as Israeli courts are both secular and religious.

An Israeli citizen has asked a court to grant him a restraining order against God, Israeli website NRG reported Thursday.

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The man, identified as David Shoshan, told the court that God had treated him cruelly in past years, though court documents did not go into detail about the all-knowing Lord's behavior towards the Israeli citizen.

Shoshan claimed that he requested the restraining order from the local police, but they had only sent a patrol car to his home on multiple occasions.

Presiding Judge Ahsan Canaan denied the request, which he deemed "ludicrous," saying that Shoshan needed help from other institutions, not the court.

The plaintiff's motivations are not without reason. The Israeli court system is a strange mix of secular and religious courts. Civil courts oversee most criminal issues, while civil matters are divided between the secular and religious institutions.

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Israel has four recognized religious communities: Jewish, Christian, Muslim, and Druze, a small community that branched off of mainstream Shia Islam. The judges for Muslim and Druze courts are elected by the Knesset, Israel's lawmaking body.

Jewish religious courts oversee issues like marriage, divorce, and deciding if converts or children of mixed marriages qualify as Jews. In Jewish law, only a child born to a Jewish woman is automatically considered to be Jewish.

Due to the religious nature of Israel's judicial system, progressive policies such as marriage equality are not possible, as all major Abrahamic religions forbid homosexuality as sin.

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