A preliminary Knesset vote on the bill was postponed for the fourth week in a row Wednesday after ongoing rejection from across the political spectrum.
MK Moti Yogev of the far-right Habayit Hayehudi party proposed the bill and stated last week its aim was to “prevent noise from houses of worship was designed to safeguard the sleep of citizens, Jews and Muslims alike.”
An anti-noise law already exists that can and has been used to address loudspeakers playing the call to prayer above state-allotted decibel levels. Reut Mor, spokeswoman for Joint List head MK Ayman Odeh, said the bill was formed with the sole intention to silence mosques, calling the bill “racist” and a “dead letter.”
While Yogev’s initial version applied only to mosques, a revised bill including all houses of worship was later okayed by Israeli ministers for Knesset review, spurring Israel’s Minister of Health, ultra-Orthodox Yaakov Litzman, to appeal the bill out of fear of its potential impact on use of the Shabbat siren.
Litzman unblocked the bill after revisions allowed a loophole for the siren, according to Israeli media.