Inter-Religious Campaign Joins the Islamic Society of North America in Condemning the Brutal Attacks on Religious Minorities in Iraq; Calls for Inter-Religious Solidarity

On Press Release

Washington, D.C.

August 19, 2014

 

The Shoulder to Shoulder Campaign, which is composed of 29 national religious and inter-religious organizations, joins its voice to that of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) in condemning the recent attacks by ISIS on Yazidis, Christians, Kurds, Turkmen, and other religious and ethnic minorities in Iraq, as well as on Shia Muslims. In a recent statement, ISNA President Imam Mohamed Magid affirmed that the actions of ISIS violate the fundamental teachings of Islam. Shoulder to Shoulder, which was formed in 2010 to take an inter-religious stance against incitement and discrimination against Muslims in the U.S., commends the sustained efforts by ISNA, the oldest and largest Muslim-American umbrella group in the U.S., to combat extremism in the Muslim world.

We denounce the widespread and horrific violations of human rights taking place in Iraq at present and the use of religious language to perpetrate and justify violence against religious minorities. We affirm our solidarity and shared humanity with those experiencing persecution. Campaign Director Catherine Orsborn stated that, “At this perilous moment for members of minority faith communities in Iraq, it is important that concerned persons of all faith backgrounds join with and amplify the countless Muslim voices denouncing the heinous actions against innocents of diverse faiths being perpetrated by ISIS. We will be stronger and more effective in condemning and ultimately ending the violence now taking place if we speak with a unified voice of conscience. ”

Shoulder to Shoulder coalition members are committed to working in various ways to address this issue and to help those impacted by this violence. Our inter-religious partnerships here in the US make us stronger and more effective allies to hard-pressed faith communities in Iraq and around the world who need support at this time.

Read more about the Shoulder to Shoulder Campaign and its interfaith efforts to end anti-Muslim sentiment in the US here, and about ISNA’s ongoing work to advance the protection of religious minorities in Muslim-majority countries herehere, and here.

You can also view some of our community members’ statements and efforts on this issue here and here. Additionally, Steering Committee Member Rev. Richard Cizik, President of the New Evangelical Partnership for the Common Good, was a participant in the “Interfaith Prayer Service for Peace in the Middle East” held at the Saint John Paul II National Shrine, August 15, 2014, in Washington, D.C. (Cizik joined Cardinal Wuerl, and four others, by reading Scriptural passages on prayer and suffering in the Psalms and II Peter).

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