More organisations send condolences

March 17, 2019 by J-Wire Newsdesk
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Messages of condolence have been sent from Jewish organisations to Christchurch’s Muslim community following the shooting in two mosque’s leaving 50 dead.

Al Noor Mosque, Christchurch. Photo: Facebook

Ata Alian, a software engineer from the Abu Dis neighborhood in Jerusalem, was one of the victims in the massacre. He was married and had a two-year-old daughter.  His father, Dr. Muhammad Alian, was also injured in the shooting and is still being treated in an intensive care unit while in serious condition.

“The Wellington Jewish Community extends its deepest condolences to the victims of the mass shooting at two Christchurch mosques”, said Chair of Temple Sinai, Matthew Smith and Chair of the Wellington Jewish Community Centre, Marlene Levine.

“This violent act is deeply disturbing.  For it to be perpetrated on people in a place prayer, adds to what is already incomprehensible.”
“Our prayers and thoughts are with the Muslim community of Christchurch who was the target of this attack.”
“As a community, we must stand together against hate, bigotry and violence. We must be upstanders, not bystanders in the face of discrimination, prejudice and the violation of human rights.”
“An attack on any faith community is an attack on all of us. The Jewish community wish to extend support to our Muslim brothers and sisters at this time, and offer support in any way we can.”
Chairman of the Executive of The Jewish Agency for Israel, Isaac Herzog stated: For the first time in history synagogues in New Zealand are closed on Shabbat following the shocking massacre of Muslims in Christchurch.
“The Jewish Agency for Israel and the New Zealand Jewish Council stand in solidarity with the bereaved families. We are united in fighting violent hatred and racism.‬

World Jewish Congress President Ronald S. Lauder has expressed horror and revulsion.

Lauder said: “I would like to express my horror and revulsion at the terrorist attacks which have targeted people attending two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand today during Friday prayers. I extend my deepest condolences to the family and loved ones of the victims, and to the people of New Zealand. We must redouble efforts to combat hatred and division in our societies, from wherever it emanates.”

The Union of Progressive Judaism and the Rabbinic Council of Australian, New Zealand and Asian Progressive Rabbis were horrified to learn of the attack on Christchurch Mosques. All people of faith, indeed all humanity, are connected one to another, and this attack is an attack on all of us. Our hearts turn to the families of those who were killed, and our prayers of healing to all that were injured. We stand with people of all faiths (and no faith) in condemnation of such murderous violence.

Sadly, we live in a world where Islamophobia, Antisemitism and all forms of bigotry are on the rise, where people are increasingly turning towards hatred and violence. At times like these words and even prayers are insufficient. Instead, together people of all faiths must take up the challenge to change the world to make it a better place for our children and grandchildren. We must never stand silent or fail to act in the face of hatred, bigotry and violence.

Muslims, Christians and Jews pray to the same God, and together we have found peace and acceptance in New Zealand. Today’s attack is a wakeup call not to take our acceptance and security as a given.

We call on people to think of the many action steps that each of us can take to create an environment of understanding and acceptance of diversity. Visiting a mosque to offer support or reaching out in friendship to a family from a different faith are just two steps that can be taken. Attitudes must change. We must learn not to judge people for differing modes of dress, language or tradition but instead value both our common humanity and our shared, though diverse, quests to understand the divine.

The Jewish Community Council of Victoria (JCCV) and the Victorian Jewish community are horrified and saddened by the news of the terrorist attack on worshippers at mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, and stand in solidarity with the Muslim community and the people of New Zealand. This act of terrorism, motivated by hatred and bigotry, is an attack on all of us.

We extend our condolences to the families and communities affected, the wider Muslim community and the people of Christchurch.

The far right, white supremacist ideology which motivated this attack has no place in society, and are contrary to the values of inclusion, diversity and compassion which are its foundation.  In the words of New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinta Ardern “ those values, I can assure you, will not, and cannot, be shaken by this attack”.

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