Vienna, 6rd January 2019
On Monday, the 1st of January 2019, in the Flemish section of Belgium the banning of cattle and poultry slaughter without pre-stunning came into force. This discriminating measure affects the large Muslim and Jewish communities in this country.
That provinces within Belgium, with its lawmaking capital of Europe Brussels, have passed such anti-religious law is an affront to European values which are said to be treasured so dearly by its European member states. The declaration made by many European leaders and politicians, again and again, that there is “no Europe without Jews” becomes an empty phrase unless the members states of the European Community come out now with a forceful statement that there is no room for such discriminating acts against any part of our citizens and this law should be abolished instantly.
It is not only the Muslim and Jewish segments of our European community which are at the losing end of such anti-religious measures. Since freedom of religion is one of the pillars on which the fabric of the European post-war society is based, such infringement of religious practices severely damages the entire community right across our continent. The Muslim and Jewish communities will not change their religious commitment. The outside world will just increase their loss of respect for religious conviction, for philosophy of life in general, for diversity and for the minority communities within their midst.
Such situation has proved in the past to be far from desirable.
The European Muslim Jewish Leadership Council (MJLC) prays to the Lord Above to be able to strengthen our respective communities in their struggle of maintaining their religious practices in a free and united Europe as a blessing for our own communities and far beyond.
Vienna, the 6th of January 2019/ 28 Rabi’ath-Thani 1440/ 29 Tevet 5779
The European Muslim Jewish Leadership Council (MJLC)
Mufti Nedzad Grabus, co-chairman, Ljubljana
Chief Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt, co-chairman, Moscow
Rabbi Lody B. van de Kamp, coordinator, Amsterdam
Imam Yahya Pallavicini, coordinator, Rome