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Rabbis Deny Ordering Dog to Be Stoned

Israeli newspaper apologizes for mistaken report

Israel’s Maariv newspaper has withdrawn a story last week that claimed that a religious court in Jerusalem had sentenced a dog to be stoned to death.

The story was reported in the Israeli and international media.

The original reports said that when a stray dog wandered into the rabbinical court in an ultra-orthodox Jewish neighborhood, this reminded a judge of a curse passed by the court about 20 years ago on a secular attorney who had died, following which the judges instructed his spirit to enter the body of a dog.

According to last week’s story, one of the judges at the court, believing the stray dog to be inhabited by the attorney’s spirit, had asked local children to carry out the death sentence on the stray dog.

The dog was said to have escaped, and an Israeli animal protection group had filed a complaint with the police.

The newspaper has apologized for any offense caused, and quoted a rabbinical statement denying that a dog had been condemned.