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Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on January 4th, 2012
by Pincas Jawetz (pj@sustainabilitank.info)

Bahrain king meets with rabbi

December 30, 2011

(JTA) — The king of Bahrain met with a visiting rabbi in his palace.

Rabbi Marc Schneier, vice president of the World Jewish Congress, met in Bahrain Wednesday with King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa. Schneier is also the president of the Foundation for Ethnic Understanding.

Schneier said that he welcomed a suggestion by King Hamad to host a gathering of Jewish and Muslim clerics in Bahrain in 2012.

“Bahrain is a role model in the Arab world for coexistence and tolerance of different faith communities, including a small Jewish community. I am deeply honored to be the first rabbi to be hosted by the King of Bahrain at his palace, and I am excited that he and his government are fully committed to building bridges between our two communities,” Schneier said in a statement.

“I am looking forward to working with King Hamad and his government to bring our two communities closer together,” he also said.

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Rabbi Lauds Bahrain King Despite Abuses

Marc Schneier Calls Gulf State a ‘Model’ for Dialogue

Crackdown King: Rabbi Marc Schneier meets Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa. The Gulf State’s ruler has been criticized for cracking down on opponents but Schneier praises him as a model of interfaith dialogue.

Crackdown King: Rabbi Marc Schneier meets Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa. The Gulf State’s ruler has been criticized for cracking down on opponents but Schneier praises him as a model of interfaith dialogue.

Schneier rejected the notion that the openness demonstrated by the Bahraini monarch could be an attempt to win over the sympathy of American Jews at a time when international support for his action is in decline. The New York rabbi explained that dealing with Bahrain’s internal strife was not part of his mission and that he was focused solely on the issue of Jewish-Muslim dialogue. “I was somewhat myopic in my goals over there,” he conceded.

“This wasn’t a fact-finding mission for me,” he added. “I came with a very focused mission and, thank God, I was able to accomplish it.”

Schneier’s mission was, to a great extent, unprecedented. While Jewish–Muslim dialogue forums are common in the U.S. and Europe, he succeeded in recruiting King Hamed to host such a meeting in a Muslim country. At the end of the 45-minute meeting, which took place in the royal palace in Manama, an agreement was reached to hold a meeting in 2012 in which 10 Jewish and 10 Muslim leaders will convene to discuss relations between the two faiths in Bahrain under the auspices of King Hamed.

“I see this as a natural extension of the journey we’ve been on to strengthen relations between Jews and Muslims,” said Schneier, who also serves as vice president of the World Jewish Congress.

Bahrain has a tiny Jewish community with some 30 members. One of them, Houda Ezra Nonoo, serves as the country’s ambassador to the United States.

Read more: www.forward.com/articles/148887/#ixzz1iXAenrYN

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logo Das jüdische Wochenmagazin
BAHRAIN

König empfängt Vizepräsidenten des Jüdischen Weltkongresses.

29. Dezember 2011
Hamad bin Isa al Khalifa will 2012 in Manama eine Konferenz jüdischer und muslimischer Geistlicher abhalten.
Rabbi Marc Schneier, Vizepräsident des Jüdischen Weltkongresses, ist am Mittwoch in Manama, der Hauptstadt des Golfstaates Bahrain, vom dortigen König Hamad bin Isa al Khalifa empfangen worden.
Während des 45minütigen Gesprächs im Königspalast begrüsste Schneier, der aktiv um die Förderung des muslimisch-jüdischen Dialogs und der Kooperation zwischen den beiden Gruppen bemüht ist, den Vorschlag des Monarchen, 2012 in Bahrain ein Treffen zwischen jüdischen und muslimischen Geistlichen abzuhalten.
Schneier meinte: «Bahrain, das selber über eine kleine jüdische Gemeinde verfügt, ist ein Vorbild in der arabischen Welt für Koexistenz und Toleranz zwischen Gemeinden unterschiedlicher Glaubensbekenntnisse.»
Rabbi Schneier ist als erster Rabbiner überhaupt im Königspalast von Manama empfangen worden und kam auch mit den bahrainischen Ministern für Justiz und islamische Angelegenheiten und Handel und Industrie zusammen. [TA]
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