Reform Movement Condemns Today’s Terrorist Attack in Paris

The World Union for Progressive Judaism issued the following statement today in response to news of a terrorist attack at the Charlie Hebdo magazine in Paris that killed 12:

The World Union for Progressive Judaism expresses our deepest sympathies to the families and friends of the victims murdered on Wednesday January 7, when hooded gunmen stormed the Paris offices of a weekly satirical magazine, killing at least 12 people, including two police officers, in the worst terrorist attack on French soil in decades.

The WUPJ condemns this act of exceptional barbarism. Rabbi Daniel H. Freelander, President of WUPJ states: “We join our French congregations in expressing our horror at the targeted killings in Paris Wednesday morning.  This abhorrent act raises the concern of all who value free speech and religious diversity. Our future ultimately depends on the determination of governments to defend and protect pluralism, and show no tolerance for the descent into this kind of violence.” As an organization founded on and guided by a fervent belief in cultural pluralism and political liberalism, we consider any attack on any symbol of free expression anywhere to be an assault on the pillars of Progressive Judaism: justice and equality, democracy and peace, personal fulfillment and collective obligations.

Our European Union for Progressive Judaism leaders, Leslie Bergman (President) and Miriam Kramer (Chairman), add: “The leadership of the EUPJ deplores the atrocity which took place earlier today in Paris. Free speech is a cornerstone value of our faith and together with the citizens of France we mourn the brutal deaths of those who were assassinated.”

As Paris mourns and the world consoles, we continue to hope that the souls of all humankind will one day be stirred by the heartfelt prayers and commitment to “Choose life, so that you and future generations may live.”

(Deuteronomy 30:19)

Rabbi Daniel H. Freelander, President WUPJ
Michael Grabiner, Chairman WUPJ
Dr. Philip Bliss, WUPJ Advocacy Committee Chair

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From the URJ

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