Representing Jewish Communities in 100 Countries Across Six Continents
TO: President Guðni Th. Jóhannesson
As a supporter of the World Jewish Congress, the representative body of Jewish communities in more than 100 countries across six continents, I stand with the small Jewish community in Iceland in urging you to veto pending legislation in the Icelandic parliament that would ban the age-old Jewish practice of circumcision of boys.
Circumcision is the essential foundation for local Jewish life, and any ban would effectively make it impossible for Jews in Iceland to live freely as equal citizens of your country. This would be a drastic step that would severely curtail the ability of a Jewish community to exist in Iceland.
As Iceland’s Jewish community looks forward to opening its first synagogue in Reykjavik this year, it would be deeply unfortunate to pass a law that would effectively close the door on their ability to thrive.
Should this legislation pass, your veto will send a powerful message about Iceland’s unshakable commitment to religious tolerance and freedom, precisely at a time of rising anti-Semitism in many countries across Europe.
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