NEW YORK, N.Y. (Oct. 3)
At a reception given him here by the Synagogue Council of America, Archbishop George Hakim, head of the Greek Catholic Church in Israel, stated that there can not be any peace in the Middle East “until the Arabs — my own people, whom I love — recognize Israel’s right to exist.” At the same time, he said that Israel, “the country I love, must recognize that she is a Middle Eastern state.”
Francis Cardinal Spellman, Archbishop of the New York Archdiocese, also spoke at the reception. He commended the Synagogue Council’s welcome of Archbishop Hakim as an example of the Jewish community’s desire to encourage a friendship with the Arab peoples that will lead to peaceful co-existence in the Middle East.
Archbishop Hakim was welcomed by Rabbi Jacob P. Runbin, president of the Synagogue Council. Rabbi Rubin noted that the Archbishop is the leading spokesman for Israel’s Christian Arabs and has played a central role in reconciling Israeli Arabs and Jews. The reception was attended by Jewish religious and lay leaders, and by representatives of Catholic and Protestant church organizations.