Today, religious leaders must bring public awareness.

According to the public relations office of the Research Institute for Islamic Culture and Thought, an international symposium on interfaith dialogue and the issue of Gaza was held in Tehran on Tuesday morning, 7th of May 2024. In another part of this symposium, Rabbi Younes Hamami Lalehzar delivered a speech.


The religious leader of the Iranian Jewish community began his speech by stating that in all religions, after the unity and oneness of God (monotheism), the issue of human dignity is addressed. He said: Given this perspective, no one should consider himself superior to others. All humans were created from one Adam, so whoever saves one person is as if they have saved the whole world, and conversely, if someone kills one person, it’s as if they have killed all of humanity.


He added: Unfortunately, in today’s world, even if something valuable like religion exists, colonialists still spread their own views through misuse of advertising tools. Currently, there has been extensive conflict in Gaza for the past seven months, while ethics, morality, and all religious and international laws do not permit targeting hospitals, schools, and non-combatants, yet it seems the goal of this war is to kill individuals and civilians.


Rabbi Hamami Lalehzar said: In the Torah’s Deuteronomy 19-20, even environmental issues are discussed, stating that during war, do not cut down fruit trees. This approach has been raised in our religion. Now, this should also apply to the life of a human being, which has great value.


He added: Judaism, with a historical background of over 3300 years, has interacted with various peoples and religions, and Iran is a prominent example of this. Jews were present in Iran before and after Islam, and especially with the advent of Islam, due to the similarities between the two religions from various aspects, including jurisprudential aspects, they reached solidarity and coexistence with each other.


Rabbi Hamami Lalehzar continued: Zionism has gained power over the past 100 years through a predominantly political movement and seeks to present itself to the world as the representative of Jews, while the first opposition to Zionism came from Jews.

He stated: Unfortunately, in the past seven months, conflicts that have been going on for over 70 years have taken on a new form. Israel suffered a heavy defeat in Gaza, but with the support they receive from the United States and European countries, this war continues and pains the heart of every free human being. Unfortunately, governments have taken no action against this trend, and nothing seems to be happening unless something happens under the influence and pressure of public opinion worldwide, leading to a ceasefire.


Rabbi Hamami Lalehzar said: It is the duty of each religion to have a clearer enlightenment, even in America where the university movement began. Today, public awareness must come from religious leaders, and perhaps under this pressure, we will witness peaceful coexistence among all religions.