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UK Jews, Muslims issue joint statement for peace

Jewish and Muslim leaders in the United Kingdom issue a joint statement calling for peace in the Middle East and “constructive dialogue” between the two groups in Britain.

“In spite of the situation in the Middle East, we must continue to work hard for good community relations in the UK. We must not import conflict. We must export peace instead,” reads the statement issued Wednesday by the Board of Deputies of British Jews and the Muslim Council of Britain.

This statement is called “unprecedented” by the London-based Jewish Chronicle. However, it also contends that “the targeting of civilians is completely unacceptable and against our religious traditions.” While Hamas has shot its rockets at civilian populations in Israel, Israel has maintained that it did not deliberately target Gazan civilians in its offensive. Israel says the civilian casualties are largely due to Hamas’s use of “human shields” and the terror organization’s practice of working out of and near civilian institutions, such as schools and hospitals.

The statement condemned “any expression of Anti-Semitism, Islamophobia or any form of racism,” including during rallies and on social media.

It also calls for a redoubling of efforts “to work together and get to know one another.”

“We need constructive dialogue to limit our disagreements and identify the widest possible range of areas for cooperation. There are more issues that unite us than divide us,” the message concludes.

Meanwhile, a rally to demand zero tolerance against anti-Semitism in London and throughout the United Kingdom is scheduled to be held Sunday outside the Royal Courts of Justice in London, the Campaign Against Anti-Semitism announces.

JTA

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