British rabbis and imams make Srebrenica trip

British rabbis and imams make Srebrenica trip

Muslim and Jewish leaders attended memorials in Srebrenica to mark 21 years since the genocide

With the ambassador
With the ambassador

Senior rabbis and imams visited Bosnia on a landmark trip to remember those murdered in the Srebrenica genocide.

The group of 11 visited memorials, synagogues and mosques, met survivors and the UK Ambassador to Bosnia.

They recited Jewish and Muslim prayers at a memorial center at Potocari where victims are buried.

The faith leaders, who are all members of the National Council of Imams and Rabbis of the Joseph Interfaith Foundation, had a wreath laid at the memorial by its Chief Executive, Mehri Niknam.

Rabbi Jason Kleiman said he was “humbled by the dignity with which the victims bear their unimaginable loss, and by the positive way that they work to teach other about the lessons of Srebrenica: not by hatred or revenge, but by justice and remembrance and teaching the next generation to be aware of religious hatred and prejudice.”

In addition to visiting sites to remember victims of the genocide, they also went to the oldest Sephardi synagogue in the country, and signed the book of remembrance for those who died in Shoah from Bosnia.

Also attending from the Jewish community, was Rabbi Reuven Silverman, a senior rabbi of the reform synagogue in Manchester and Liberal Judaism’s Rabbi Danny Rich.

Upon visiting the gallery of Tarik Samarah in Sarajevo, who is a survivor and now artist, rabbi Rich said: “The gallery was a moving, radical, and unusual way of expressing the inexpressible”

The British Muslim community was represented by Imam Qari Asim of Leeds Makkah Mosque, the Chief Imam of the East London Mosque, Abdul Qayum, and others.

This is the first time that high level of senior Imams and Rabbis visited  Srebrenica together.

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