The World Jewish Congress issued a statement this week strongly condemning the “outrageous decision” taken by the United Church of Canada to support a boycott of Israeli communities and for its stated regret for previously calling for Palestinian recognition of Israel’s Jewish character.
ne-sided decision, says the WJC, rather than fostering peace, undermines any efforts at reaching a peace agreement, as it singles out Israel for blame.
Evelyn Sommer, Chair, World Jewish Congress, North America, said, “The appalling decision taken by the United Church of Canada is detrimental not only to the people of Israel, but to the Palestinians employed in these communities. Calling for a boycott of Israeli citizens while purporting to seek peace is disingenuous and counterproductive, and it undermines the possibility of bringing the two parties together for direct negotiations, as mandated by United Nations resolutions.”
“This deplorable move also betrays the will of the grass roots members of the UCC who do not support a policy of destructive boycotts. The leaders in this case have made the poor choice to harm relations between the UCC and the Canadian Jewish community, disregarding years of efforts on the part of many members of both faith groups to develop inter-religious harmony and mutual understanding.”
Sommer added, “The leaders of the UCC have made an unfortunate decision that denies the facts of the Jewish people’s historical presence in their homeland and discourages the chances of a genuine and lasting peace in the Middle East. In doing so, they have lost a precious opportunity to help build bridges and promote peaceful co-existence in a troubled region of the world.”