Parents Win Right to Use Dead Soldier's Frozen Sperm

For first time, court allows impregnation of woman who was not soldier's wife; 'designated mother' selected from field of 40.

Nir Hasson
Nir Hasson
Nir Hasson
Nir Hasson

The Ramat Gan Family Court has given the parents of an Israel Defense Forces soldier who was killed in the Gaza Strip permission to use his sperm to create a child. The ruling marks the first time that the court is allowing a woman who did not know the deceased to be impregnated in such a case.

The parents of the soldier, identified as K., told the court the impregnation would be the fulfillment of their son's wish and the realization of their right to become grandparents. According to the petition filed by attorney Irit Rosenblum, the founder and chairwoman of the family advocacy group New Family, K. used to speak to his parents about his desire to become a father.

K. was killed by a Palestinian sniper in August 2002. After his death, his mother went to the media to find women interested in having a baby with his sperm, which has been preserved at Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer. One of 40 candidates was chosen, and is identified in the petition as the "designated mother." She had been planning to become pregnant through a sperm donation in any case.

K.'s parents and the designated mother asked the hospital to use the sperm to get the woman pregnant, but the hospital - on the order of the attorney general - requested permission from family court. Attorney General Menachem Mazuz decided not to oppose the request, even though he had decided three years ago that the parents of a dead child do not have standing in such cases.

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