Israel on Monday swore in its newest member of the Knesset, who is openly gay, marking a record for the country considered a regional pioneer on LGBT+ rights.
Yorai Lahav-Hertzano from the opposition Yesh Atid-Telem alliance became the latest politician to join the 120-seat Knesset, bringing to six the number of openly gay lawmakers.
Israel has the fifth-highest share of LGBT+ MPs globally, with Britain taking the lead at 8%, followed by Liechtenstein, Scotland and New Zealand.
Since a new government took office in May, Israel now has two openly gay ministers, Amir Ohana, Minister for Public Security, and Itzik Shmuli, Welfare Minister.
Mr Lahav-Herzano said on Wednesday he would fight for same-sex marriage and LGBT+ surrogacy rights. Speaking to Reuters, he said: “I’m gay and I’m proud of being gay and I’m very proud to be a gay lawmaker in Israel”.
Same-sex marriages are not illegal in Israel, but they are they not legally recognised. Israel recognises same-sex weddings performed abroad and children adopted overseas by, or born to surrogates for, gay parents.