Statement regarding Gaza by CRIHL Convener
Jerusalem, 7 Jan 2009
As Convener of the Council of Religious Institutions of the Holy Land, I am deeply concerned about the situation in and around Gaza. Throughout January 5-7, I have had extensive conversations with the religious leaders who meet in the Council.
While they, at this point in time, have not come out with a joint statement; I can say, without reservations, that they are all deeply concerned about the immense loss of human lives, especially of all the innocent and non-combatant victims before and during this war. They are concerned about all the wounded people and all the suffering which accompanies the violence.
They wish an end to the use of violence, a cease-fire, and a political arrangement which can lead to a lasting just peace and security for all.
The religious leaders of the Holy Land Muslims, Jews, and Christians are part of their own peoples. They share the perspectives of their own peoples as well as their own suffering. However, they also converge in the deep, religious respect for the dignity of every human being. In this situation, we have again agreed upon the need to emphasizet this teaching and value precisely in the middle of conflict, as crucial for a future where the cycle of violence can be broken and banished.