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Australians hold inter-faith discussions on Israel

SYDNEY (WJC)– Jewish and Christian leaders have met to heal the wounds caused by the National Council of Churches’ call last month for a boycott of Israeli goods made in the West Bank. The church council called for Australians to consider the boycott at the request of Middle Eastern churches.

The president of the Executive Council of Australian Jewry, Robert Goot, wrote to the council saying the resolution was a “most unpleasant surprise” and added: “We feel that we have been badly let down by people we have long thought of as our friends”.

Last week, Goot met in Sydney with the leaders of the Catholic and Anglican churches, archbishops Philip Wilson of Adelaide and Phillip Aspinall of Brisbane. On Monday, both councils said in a joint statement that a “serious exchange of views” had helped Christian leaders better understand Jewish concerns and Jewish leaders better understand why the resolution was adopted.

The general-secretary of the National Council of Churches, Tara Curlewis, said the statement showed the depth of the relationship between the groups. They would meet again to work on a “more comprehensive” statement. In the meantime, the boycott resolution remained in place.

Preceding provided by World Jewish Congress

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