SIMON WIESENTHAL CENTER: WHILE UCC VOTES DOWN VILE ANTI-ISRAEL LANGUAGE, IT ENDORSES 'AMMAN CALL' FOR PALESTINIAN RIGHT OF RETURN AND ENCOURAGES LOCAL GROUPS TO CONSIDER BOYCOTT OF ISRAEL

August 14, 2009

SIMON WIESENTHAL CENTER: WHILE UCC VOTES DOWN VILE ANTI-ISRAEL LANGUAGE, IT ENDORSES 'AMMAN CALL' FOR PALESTINIAN RIGHT OF RETURN AND ENCOURAGES LOCAL GROUPS TO CONSIDER BOYCOTT OF ISRAEL

“More challenges to Israel's legitimacy will be presented at Lutheran conclave next week,” cautions Rabbi Abraham Cooper, Associate Dean of the Wiesenthal Center.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center commended the constituents of Canada's largest Protestant denomination, the United Church of Canada, for voting down anti-Israel resolutions at their 40th General Council this week. "Language accusing Israel of ethnic cleansing and apartheid should never have been allowed in the first place,” said Rabbi Cooper. “That is why 10,000 online activists joined the Wiesenthal Center’s protest to the UCC leadership," he added.

However, the Center expressed deep disappointment that the UCC, while voting down a national boycott, simultaneously encouraged local groups to, in the statement released by Bruce Gregersen, General Council Officer of Programs, “undertake their own initiatives, which may include economic boycotts as a means to ending the occupation [of Palestine].”
Cooper also expressed deep concern over the UCC’s endorsement of the World Council of Churches’ “Amman Call” that endorses the right of return of Palestinians to what is today the State of Israel.

"Gratuitous attacks on the Jewish State--dating back to the infamous United Nations’ 2001 Conference against Racism held in Durban --have made Denominational gatherings a flashpoint over the Middle East. Added Rabbi Cooper. “In a few days, Lutherans will have a national convention where at least one proposed resolution repeats the Apartheid slander.”

Cooper concluded: “The Simon Wiesenthal Center will continue to be on the frontlines of this struggle to safeguard Israel's rights, combat anti-Semitism and work with people of good faith toward the common good,’ he concluded.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400,000 member families in the United States. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the OAS, the Council of Europe and the Latin American Parliament (Parlatino).

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