Statement of Jewish and Muslim participants on peaceful coexistence

The following declaration is the result of an exchange between Jewish and Muslim participants in our project „meet2respect“. They developed this declaration between December 2015 and May 2016. The adoption of the declaration took place on May 25, 2016. The declaration has since acted as a shared basis for the encounters organized by meet2respect.

Declaration of principles: Violence – not in our name

We work to ensure that no one in Germany is being discriminated against because of his or her religious identity and we confront each form of radicalization, all ideologies of inequalities, and social exclusion. We consider violence neither justifiable nor acceptable as a tool to enforce political goals and we distance ourselves from individuals and organizations that relativize or justify the use of violence or even use violence themselves.
We are convinced that unresolved conflicts in other parts of the world, notably the Arab-Israeli conflict, should and may not disturb the peaceful coexistence of Jews and Muslims in Germany.

Disregarding different stances on the Arab-Israeli-conflict, we agree in the following:
We recognize both the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination as a nation in peace and freedom and Israel’s right to exist as a state in internationally recognized secure borders. We accept that there are different opinions on the specification of borders. We distance ourselves from all both Islamic and Jewish organizations that call to violence and/or do not distance themselves from the use of violence.

The declaration is supported by the following Jewish representatives:

– Aaron Hammel, Rabbi Head of the Institute for Jewish Dialog of Religions (IJDR)
– Prof. Dr. Andreas Nachama, , Rabbi for the Synagogue Hüttenweg/Sukkat Schalom in Berlin-Charlottenburg, Director of the foundation „Stiftung Topografie des Terrors“ and Jewish President of the „German Coordinating Council for Societies of Christian-Jewish Cooperation“ (Deutscher Koordinierungsrat der Gesellschaften für Christlich-Jüdische Zusammenarbeit)
– Daniel Alter, Rabbi
– Elias Dray , Rabbi, Jewish Community Amberg
– Gesa S. Ederberg, , Rabbi for the „New Synagogue“ belonging to the Jewish Community Berlin, founding member of the „General Conference of Rabbis“ (Allgemeine Rabbinerkonferenz) of the Central Council of Jews in Germany and coordinator for religious education in non-Jewish schools
– Jakob Haimann, Rabbi
– Jonah Sievers, Rabbi, Jewish Community Berlin, Pestalozzistraße Berlin Synagogue
– Dr. Walter Rothschild, Rabbi of Schleswig-Holstein, Rabbi for Gescher LaMassoret in Cologne and Gescher in Freiburg
– Vernen Liebermann

The declaration is supported by the following Muslim representatives:
– Ender Cetin, Muslim scholar and former head of Sehitlik Mosque Berlin
– Ferid Heider, Imam
– Imran Sagir, CEO of the Muslim Telephone Counselling (Muslimisches Seelsorge-Telefon)
– M. Taha Sabri, Imam and head of Dar-as-Salam Mosque Berlin*
– Abdel Aziz Khoudari, Imam*
– Khedr Ibrahim, Imam*
– Khaled Sedeeq, Imam*
– Murat Gül, Imam and head of Islamic Federation Berlin*
– Islamische Föderation Berlin e.V.*
– Deutschsprachiger Muslimkreis e.V.*
– Initiative Berliner Muslime e.V.*
– Rat Berliner Muslime e.V.*
– Insann e.V.*
– Arresalah Moschee, Gesellschaft zu Förderung des Koran und Arabisch Unterricht e.V.*
– Islamisches Erziehungs- und Kulturzentrum e.V.*
– Islamisches Jugendzentrum e.V.*
– Teiba Kulturzentrum e.V.*
– Islamisches Erziehungs- und Kulturzentrum e.V.*
– Neuköllner Begegnungsstätte e.V.*

*Marked individuals and organizations are not participants of meet2respect, but did condemn antisemitic attacks in the context of an incident at Friedenauer Gemeinschaftsschule in the spring of 2017 in Berlin. They expressed their support for the aforementioned declaration in a public letter.

Representatives of Jewish and Muslim organizations, especially Rabbis and Imams, are invited to express their support for this declaration and have their names put in this list. Please contact bernhard.heider (at) leadership-berlin.de in case of interest.