Statement on Terror Attack at Entrance to Temple Mount
We join the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association in expressing our condemnation of today's terror attack at the entrance to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. We mourn the loss of the lives of the two Israeli Border Police officers who were shot and killed, Advanced Staff Sgt. Maj. Hael Sathawi and Advanced Staff Sgt. Maj. Kamil Shanan. May their memories be a blessing and may all who mourn find comfort.
We are concerned about the potential for an attack in such a sensitive place as the Temple Mount area to lead to an explosive fresh cycle of violence, and we hope that all political and religious leaders in the region will do their utmost to counsel against such violence.
This attack comes at the end of a week that has seen both signs of hope and terrible suffering. Israel and the Palestinian Authority reached an important agreement on water sharing, and Israeli and Palestinian firefighters held a joint training exercise. Meanwhile, Gaza's 2 million residents have gone another week with only a few hours of electrical power a day, during a scorching heat wave, as a result of a dispute between PA President Abbas and Hamas, and the Israeli government's decision to agree to Abbas' request that power be reduced.
We call on American officials in the region to offer immediate assistance to help prevent today's attack from sparking a wave of violent reprisals, and to hasten efforts to resolve the growing humanitarian crisis in Gaza.
May all in need of comfort receive it, and may all who work for a more peaceful and just future be strengthened in their efforts.