Chief Rabbi at interfaith iftar: Jews and Muslims are ‘part of the same family’

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Chief Rabbi at interfaith iftar: Jews and Muslims are ‘part of the same family’

Jewish representatives invited to break traditional evening meal to mark the end of the day’s Ramadan fast

Chief Rabbi Mirvis at the Interfaith iftar
Chief Rabbi Mirvis at the Interfaith iftar

The Chief Rabbi said Jews and Muslims are “part of the same family” at an iftar this week, after Jewish representatives were invited to a traditional evening meal to break the day’s Ramadan fast.

Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis spoke of the historic closeness between Jewish and Muslim communities, saying: “Jews and Muslims are part of the same historic family. Our friends here tonight are true and genuine brethren in every sense.”

He was accompanied by the new president of the Board of Deputies, Marie van der Zyl, who called on “all political parties to properly investigate racism in their ranks,” after the Muslim Council of Britain urged an independent investigation into Islamophobia in the Conservative Party.

She referred to Muslim solidarity with the Jewish community earlier this year, when Muslim groups took out full-page newspaper adverts highlighting how insidious anti-Semitism is.

“The response throughout our community was extraordinarily positive, indeed even emotional,” she said. “We had messages on social media from Jews all over the world, who said they had tears in their eyes when they read the text of your advert.”

Fiyaz Mughal, founder of Muslims Against Anti-Semitism and Tell MAMA, spoke of the rise of political anti-Semitism, saying: “It is the duty of us all, including Muslim communities, to stand up and challenge it where we find it.

“Protecting the dignity, integrity and well-being of our Jewish brothers and sisters is the right thing to do and also means protecting the space where other diverse communities can flourish. We stand with them, as Muslims at this time.”

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