Originally appeared here in Jewish News (UK) - March 9, 2015

Christians across the UK have been signing a declaration expressing appreciation of Israel, in the wake of growing anti-Semitism and extremism in the Middle East.

The declaration states: “We deeply appreciate that Israel is the only country in the Middle East which extends freedom of worship to all its citizens and where the Christian community is growing.

“We grieve and stand with families in Israel and the wider Middle East, who have lost loved ones and with all who are persecuted by the rise of violent extremism and intolerance in the region.”

It has been endorsed by organizations, Christian Friends of Israel and the International Christian Embassy of Jerusalem, as well as by individual churches and prayer groups.

It calls upon the spiritual leaders and elected representative to work to combat anti-Semitism and extremism across the world and to strengthen co-operation between the UK and Israel.

A meeting was held in the Carriageworks theatre in Leeds on 1 March, attended by over 200 people, including Pastor Kemi Ilori, who leads the Team group of 21 churches in Leeds. He said he was ‘proud’ to sign the Declaration and show public support for both the Jewish community at a time of surging anti-Semitism in the UK and extremism in the Middle East. Read More