Contact: Lauren Theodore at 212-650-4154
New York, NY; January 28, 2020 - In response to today's presentation by President Trump and Prime Minister Netanyahu outlining a proposal for Middle East peace, Rabbi Rick Jacobs, Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) President, issued the following statement:
An opportunity to make peace is a holy act, one that must be considered and weighed with the deepest seriousness and attention. We laud all efforts to bring peace and firmly believe that a secure Israel side by side with a viable Palestinian state is in the best interest of American foreign policy and, of course, for the future of Israel as a Jewish and democratic state. We also believe that peace must be negotiated directly by the parties, with American support.
Prime Minister Netanyahu and Leader of the Opposition Benny Gantz have both lauded the new Trump administration plan. We expect the Israeli public to debate this plan during its election season and trust that no final agreements will be implemented prior to the Israeli election. In this regard, we are especially concerned about Prime Minister Netanyahu’s statement at the White House saying that he will establish, unilaterally, Israeli law over all of those West Bank settlements and the Jordan Valley proposed for final status under the Trump plan. We believe that this move toward annexation is dangerous for Israel’s future and for stability and peace of the region overall.
As these efforts toward peace evolve, we will continue to advocate for and work toward a day of peace and security for the people of Israel and for the Palestinians.
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.
Founded in 1873, URJ has grown into the largest and most powerful force in North American Jewish life, with nearly 850 member congregations and work that inspires, connects, and educates millions of people. Our legacy, reach, leadership, and vision mean that we can unite thousands of years of tradition with a modern, evolving Judaism to strengthen Jewish communities today and for future generations.
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