A statement signed recently by Rabbi Shlomo Amar (left), Archbishop Rowan Williams and Rabbi Yona Metzger emphasizes their ‘profound concern’ about the rise in anti-Semitism around the world.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, and Israel’s two chief rabbis, Shlomo Amar and Yona Metzger, have signed an agreement mapping out their future dialogue.
“What we’ve agreed today will provide a framework within which both practical and sometimes challenging issues can be discussed on the basis of mutual trust and respect,” said Archbishop Williams, the leader of the global Anglican Communion, after signing the agreement with Rabbi Amar, the chief Sephardi rabbi, and Rabbi Metzger who represents Ashkenazi Jews, who mostly come from Europe.
The Sept. 5 joint statement coincided with celebrations by British Jews of the 350th anniversary of their resettlement in Britain after centuries of exile.
“Amongst our profound concerns is the rise of anti-Semitism in Britain and the rest of Europe, in the Middle East and across the world at the present time,” the statement said.
The signatories called for the greatest possible response to the need for reconstruction and rebuilding both of the physical infrastructure and of the emotional and psychological relations of Christians, Jews and Muslims in the Middle East region.
The agreement reaffirms the right of the state of Israel to live within recognized and secure borders and to defend itself by all legal means against all who threaten its peace and security. It notes that some governments and political and religious movements deny the right to existence of the State of Israel, and that there is no agreement on the rights of the Palestinian people.