Netanyahu condemns his minister’s remarks on gays

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Rafi Peretz

Israel’s Education Minister Rafi Peretz arrives to attend the weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem, Sunday, July 14, 2019. (Ronen Zvulun/Pool Photo via AP)

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel’s prime minister is condemning remarks by his education minister in favor of “conversion therapy,” a controversial psychotherapy technique that seeks to turn gays into heterosexuals.

Benjamin Netanyahu wrote on Twitter that Rafi Peretz’s statements are unacceptable and “do not represent my government’s position.”

In a televised interview over the weekend, Peretz said he supports conversation therapy and has performed it. Health officials have said the technique is scientifically dubious and possibly even dangerous.

Peretz, who leads small religious party, drew wide condemnation Sunday for his comments. Justice Minister Amir Ohana, who is openly gay, said “sexual orientation does not require therapy nor conversion. Preconceived notions and ignorance require therapy and conversion.”

Peretz also stirred controversy last week when he compared intermarriage between Jews and non-Jews to a “second Holocaust.”

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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