2013 -- AJC is deeply concerned about Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu’s candidacy for
Sephardic Chief Rabbi of Israel.
currently Chief Rabbi of the Israeli city of Safed, has in the past called for
the expulsion of Arabs from Safed College, and told Jewish property owners in
Safed that they are "prohibited" from selling or renting apartments
current candidacy for Sephardic Chief Rabbi, controversy surrounding Eliyahu’s
earlier remarks, never repudiated, led Israeli Attorney General Yehuda
Weinstein to question his views regarding Israeli Arabs. "It appears that
your choice to serve at the highest level (Sephardic Chief Rabbi) is likely to
be found unsuitable and to raise legal difficulties," the attorney general
wrote to Rabbi Eliyahu.
AJC normally does not comment on internal Israeli elections, including for
Chief Rabbi, Rabbi Eliyahu’s intolerant statements compel us to speak out. We
join with those in Israel who have cautioned that his election to one of the
two top rabbinic positions in the country could prove disastrous,” said AJC
Executive Director David Harris.
who aspire to hold the office of Chief Rabbi ought to be asked whether they, in
fact, identify with the Jewish and democratic values cherished by the
overwhelming majority of Israeli society and world Jewry,” Harris continued.
“Tragically, Rabbi Eliyahu's statements undermine the social fabric of Israeli
society and the core tenets of Judaism.”
election of Israel’s two Chief Rabbis, Ashkenazi and Sephardi, is scheduled to
take place on August 26.
Date: 7/15/2013 12:00:00 AM