The Co-Chairs and Vice-Chairs of the Inter Faith Network for the UK issued the following statement today (24 May):
We learned with deep shock and great sadness of the murder of a young member of the armed forces in Woolwich yesterday afternoon. Such acts of violence and terror have no place in our society.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the victim’s family.
The attackers linked their actions with the religion of Islam. Statements from major national Muslim bodies have, in the ensuing hours, condemned the act in the strongest terms and stressed its lack of connection to – and complete contradiction of – teachings of Islam. Even so, there have been attacks on two mosques over the course of the last 24 hours and concerns expressed about the possibility of further attack.
Our thoughts and prayers are also with any whose places of worship or personal safety are affected.
In the wake of this terrible attack, all who share a commitment to a peaceful, safe and just society have a vital role to play in strengthening community bonds and working for greater understanding and mutual support at times of difficulty.
Dr Manazir Ahsan MBE (Co-Chair)
The Revd Bob Fyffe (Co-Chair)
Dr Girdari Lal Bhan (Vice-Chair)
Mr Mohinder Singh Chana (Vice-Chair)
Mr Dorab Mistry (Vice-Chair)
Mr Vivian Wineman (Vice-Chair)
The Inter Faith Network for the UK was founded in 1987 and links 200 member bodies including: national representative bodies of the Baha'i, Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Jain, Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, and Zoroastrian faiths; national, regional, local and other inter faith bodies; and academic institutions and educational bodies concerned with inter faith issues. It works with members and other agencies to promote good inter faith relations in the UK.