יום חמישי 18 יוני 2015
The Israel Reform Movement to the Prime Minister –
Please express your public reservation from MK Azulai’s statement that “Reform Jews are a disaster to the nation of Israel.”
These remarks strongly and gravely upset the feelings of millions of Jews in Israel and the diaspora and seriously endangers the relationship of the Jewish community in the diaspora with the State of Israel
Today (Wednesday, June 17), the Israel Reform Movement leadership sent an urgent letter to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, asking him to publicly and unequivocally express his reservation from the statement made by MK David Azulai, as it was presented in the “Yisrael HaYom” newspaper. According to the report, MK Azulai, member of the Shas party, who serves as the Minister of Religious Affairs, said in a meeting with Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked that “Reform Jews are a disaster to the nation of Israel.”
In the letter sent to the Prime Minister, the Israel Reform Movement leadership wrote that “this type of statement from a member of the Knesset strongly and gravely upsets the feelings of millions of Jews in Israel and the diaspora and seriously endangers the relationship of the Jewish community in the diaspora with the State of Israel. A statement such as the one made by MK Azulai towards any other sector, circle and group in the Jewish world or in Israeli society would be strongly condemned, and so should this one. The fact that this statement is made by the Minister of Religious Affairs who is in charge of the provision of religious services to all Jewish Israeli citizens, casts a dark cloud on whether he is fit to serve in this position in a way which gives proper respect to the basic democratic values of the State of Israel and of its being the national homeland for Jewish people of all sects, communities and streams. In addition, this statement seriously damages the solidarity of many Jewish communities around the world with the State of Israel, especially during days when a sense of solidary has an important added value.”
The Israel Reform Movement leaders turned to the Prime Minister with a clear and sharp request:
In light of the severity of this statement and knowing that you are personally committed to nurturing the relationship with diaspora Jewry, we turn to ask that you make a public reservation from the statement made by the Minister of Religious Affairs and repeat the commitment of your government to productive, empowering and respectful dialogue with all circles in the Jewish world.