Tel Aviv / Shas, Likud Overrepresented

Members of an opposition faction at the Tel Aviv municipality said in a petition to the High Court that the city's religious council does not reflect the city council's composition, as required by law.

The petition filed by the head of the Ir Lekulanu (City for All) faction, Aharon Maduel, said factions far smaller than itself - such as those of Shas and Likud - received greater representation on the religious council than it did.

They said Religious Services Minister Yaakov Margi (Shas) originally confirmed that position, but changed his opinion after the Tel Aviv municipality withdrew a petition to the High Court against him for delaying a ruling on the matter.

The petition stated that officials representing Margi applied "unfair pressure on city representatives to enhance the Shas faction's influence in the religious council."

The Tel Aviv municipality said in response, "The composition of the religious council is set by the factional index authorized and certified by the attorney general and religious services minister."

The ministry said it was examining the matter.