Marching together for Respect & Unity
The European Jewish Community Centre, the ‘Executif des Musulmans de Belgique’, and the Chapel for Europe – neighbours in the European district organised a Press Conference on May 7th followed by a silent march.
In the short first few months of this year, we have seen rising levels of blind hateful violence in different parts of the world; deadly attacks in a mosque in New Zealand, churches in Sri Lanka, and Synagogues in the US. Contrary to popular belief and to previous centuries, most of these attacks were not driven by inter-religious tensions but by rejection of religious minorities as such by religious radicals and supremacist. These radicals are not interested in who has the ‘right religion’ but who has the right to live in our society.
We, people of all creeds, are deeply concerned; recent elections across the democratic world and polls ahead the upcoming national and European elections, are showing the rise of populism and radicalism on both ends of the political spectrum. This reflects a growing rejection of the idea of an open, tolerant, and inclusive society – one which we cherish deeply. That is when we, as responsible European citizens, are committed to taking action. It is our duty to raise awareness to the danger of extremism. It is our duty to say loud and clear that we Jews, Christians, Muslims, and atheists stand together as guarantors of each other’s beliefs. We stand together in our commitment to diversity.
Rabbis, Imams, priests, and free-thinkers joined by leaders of other religions, and non-confessionals, high EU politicians and representatives will walk hands in hands and express their strong ties, determination, and commitment to mutual respect and attachment for democratic values.
“The world will not be destroyed by those who do evil, but by those who watch them without doing anything” Albert Einstein.