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When divorce refused, Orthodox Jewish society acts
Orthodox Jewish societies use range of tactics to pressure wayward husbands to grant divorces
By The Associated Press

LAKEWOOD, N.J. (AP) ' Yisrael (YIS'-ra-ehl) Briskman's wife in Israel wanted a divorce.

But Briskman refused and fled to the United States, where the FBI says an Orthodox Jewish rabbi lured him to his Lakewood, N.J., home, kidnapped him and said he'd bury him alive if he didn't give the divorce.

Situations like this are extremely rare. But it's not uncommon for religious communities to use coercive tactics to pressure husbands into granting their wives a religious divorce.

The idea is to make life as uncomfortable for a husband who keeps his wife from getting remarried by refusing to grant a divorce.

Tactics include denying the husband access to the synagogue or telling friends to shun the spouse.

Others have sued for infliction of emotional distress or held public protests outside the spouse's home.

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