New York (Jul. 30)
Three major Jewish agencies — the American Jewish Committee, American Jewish Congress and the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith– issued a joint statement today expressing satisfaction at the retention in its present form of Israel’s Law of Return and urging Israel’s leaders to continue to reject all demands for its revision. The three community relations agencies, in their statement, said:
“… We are naturally concerned over any issue causing fundamental division or dissension within the Jewish community and especially anything that would weaken the bond of solidarity between Israel and the Jewish communities in the diaspora. We believe that recent efforts to reopen the issue of ‘Who is a Jew’ would have introduced such a division and dissension at a time when maximum unity is imperative among the Jewish people.
“We therefore welcome the news that the Council of Torah Sages has decided not to make its demand for a change in the Law of Return an ultimatum for Agudat Israel’s support of a new government; we hope that the National Religious Party will make a similar decision.
“We strongly urge the citizens of Israel and its leaders in the government and Knesset to continue to recognize the reality and importance of religious diversity and pluralism among our people, and therefore to reject all demands for revision of the Law of Return.”