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Hate Cannot Hold Us Hostage: A Muslim-Jewish Call to Solidarity

Hate Cannot Hold Us Hostage: A Muslim-Jewish Call to Solidarity

PR Newswire

NEW YORK, Jan. 16, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- The Muslim-Jewish Advisory Council issued the following statement:

As Muslims and Jews committed to our communities and our country, we stand in partnership to condemn the heinous act of targeted violence at the Beth Israel Synagogue in Colleyville, Texas. Four Jews, including the synagogue's rabbi, were held hostage for ten hours until law enforcement secured their release. In the face of this horrifying episode, we commit to redouble our efforts to combat antisemitism in the United States, regardless of its source, and no matter how it is manifest: whether as hateful attitudes, bigoted rhetoric, or targeted violence. 

The Jewish and Islamic traditions both teach that diversity is a sign of the holiness of creation and that our Creator endowed all people with dignity and freedom. 

We denounce any ideology—whether religious or political—that justifies attacks against people based on who they are or how they choose to worship. 

We call on our communities and all people of good will to come together in solidarity. We ask our allies to learn to identify the many sources and manifestations of antisemitism and to show Jewish neighbors and friends solidarity amidst this moment of vulnerability. Likewise, we encourage Jews across the country to maintain pride in their identity and to not shrink from the free expression of their faith for fear of attack. 

Together, we commit to use this incident to achieve greater understanding and to work together to combat all forms of hatred, including antisemitism and Islamophobia. We reject any attempt to use the identity of the attacker to stoke hatred against all Muslims.

We are grateful to federal and local law enforcement for their effective response to ensure that all hostages were freed without physical harm. There is a long road of healing ahead for the members of Beth Israel Synagogue, and Muslims and Jews across the country stand with them and ready to help.

The Muslim-Jewish Advisory Council (MJAC) is a network of hundreds of Muslims and Jews across the country that advocates together on domestic issues of common concern to our communities and to all Americans. Since its founding, MJAC has been at the forefront of advocacy for improved public response to hate crimes and domestic terrorism. MJAC has held several virtual workshops with the U.S. Department of Justice to improve protection for places of worship, and currently hosts the Tackle! Upstander training to help improve local prevention frameworks against targeted violence.

Founded in 2016 by American Jewish Committee with Muslim community partners, MJAC established eleven regional councils, including in Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW MJAC) in 2017, to take shared action for the good of both communities and build intercommunal solidarity. Members of DFW MJAC were among those working with law enforcement in Colleyville and on location to offer support to the Beth Israel Synagogue community amidst the crisis.

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SOURCE The Muslim-Jewish Advisory Council

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