Israel Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz announced that, starting next week, same-sex couples, single men and transgender people will be able to parent children through surrogacy, an option that was previously banned for them in the country, The Times of Israel reported.
The new rules, which come into effect Tuesday, Jan. 11, were issued by a directive formed by the health ministry director-general in line with a High Court of Justice ruling on the matter.
The new development ends an 11-year battle that started when same-sex couple Etai Pinkas Arad and Yoav Arad Pinkas filed a petition on the matter with Israel's top court in 2010.
Horowitz, who is the second openly gay Knesset member, said, "This is an exciting day for me, as a gay minister who is well aware of the exclusion and discrimination against us over the years. It's my personal struggle, too."
Health Ministry Director-General Nachman Ash said officials valued the principle of equality.