Chief Rabbi calls on Muslim religious leaders in SA to issue joint call for tolerance over Gaza conflict
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Cape Town – The chief rabbi of the Union of Orthodox Synagogues of South Africa has urged Muslim leaders to ensure tolerance is shown regarding opposing views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
In a statement on Friday, Chief Rabbi Warren Goldstein hoped the Muslim and Jewish religious leadership could issue a joint, unified call to their respective communities ’’not to verbally or physically threaten or harm each other because we disagree about the rights and wrongs of the bitter conflict in the Middle East’’.
’’I call on the Muslim Judicial Council and the Jamiatul Ulama South Africa to join me in imploring our communities to be tolerant of each other’s vastly differing political and religious views regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict,’’
’’Freedom of opinion and conscience is protected by our Constitution, especially for the times when we disagree vehemently in times like this.
’’Let us jointly call on our communities not to intimidate or threaten one another because we disagree about the rights and wrongs of the bitter conflict in the Middle East.
’’We can vigorously and publicly debate the issues with each other. We can make our voices heard. We can protest.
’’But we cannot intimidate or harm one another. We can agree to disagree. That is the South African dream – unity in diversity.
’’Let us, as the Muslim and Jewish religious leadership, issue a joint unified call to our communities not to verbally or physically threaten or harm each other. Let us call for mutual respect and tolerance.
’’Let us make the unified call for our congregants to behave in such a way that every citizen of this country feels safe to attend mosque or synagogue and to practise our faiths and hold our beliefs and opinions as our conscience demands.’’