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New York, NY; August 11, 2016 -- Rabbi Rick Jacobs, President of the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ), sent the following letter today in response to reports of Israel's plans for the destruction of the Palestinian village of Susya:
Ambassador Ron Dermer
Embassy of Israel
3514 International Dr NW
Washington, DC 20008
Dear Ambassador Dermer:
I am writing on behalf of the Union for Reform Judaism with concern about and opposition to reports of plans for the destruction of the Palestinian village of Susya.
As you well know, the people of Susya have spent decades living with displacement and uncertainty. Dwelling places have been demolished and residents have been forcibly moved to adjacent areas. Now, after lengthy talks between village leaders and Civil Administration officials have broken down, it appears that yet again, the village’s existence - in whole or in part - is threatened.
We respect the authority of the High Court, which in August ordered Defense Minister Lieberman to submit a plan for Susya by August 15. We urge you to share with him our strong support for a solution to this impasse that recognizes the interests of Susya residents and does not lead to the community’s destruction.
We encourage the adoption of building plans that respect the human rights of Palestinians. Generating more Palestinian enmity and anger will undermine the long term, essential goal of ensuring a stable and secure two state solution to the underlying conflict.
We ask you to share this letter with Prime Minister Netanyahu and Defense Minister Lieberman and join us in urging them to achieve a lasting, wise, and humane solution that protects the village of Susya from destruction.
Rabbi Rick Jacobs
President, Union for Reform Judaism
About the Union for Reform Judaism
The Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) builds community at every level—from the way we collaborate with congregations, organizations, and individuals to how we make connections across North America to advance contemporary and inclusive Jewish life. Providing vision and voice to transform the way people connect to Judaism, we help congregations stay relevant and innovative, motivate more young Jews to embrace Jewish living, agitate for a more progressive society, and foster meaningful connections to Israel.
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