A STATEMENT FOLLOWING THE ATTACK IN WESTMINSTER ON
WEDNESDAY 22ND MARCH 2017
The Birmingham Faith Leaders’ Group joins with the great majority of people across the world in condemning the attack which took place on Westminster Bridge and in the environs of the Palace of Westminster yesterday. Many times in recent years we have, tragically, found it necessary to issue condemnations of such action both in the United Kingdom and abroad. The indiscriminate inflicting of terror, death and serious injury upon innocent people pursuing their everyday lives is indefensible and fundamentally contrary to the teachings of all our major faiths.
We wish to offer our condolences to the families of those whose lives were lost yesterday, and our prayers for them and for all who were caught up in the horrific events. We also pay tribute to the public services which protect us and we recognise with gratitude the dangers their work can sometimes bring, as was so tragically demonstrated yesterday.
It has been disturbing today to learn of the apparent Birmingham connection to this atrocity. We implore people to recognise that such actions are taken by individuals, not by whole communities. We completely reject any attempt to see an opportunity to blame any particular community or faith, or any other community in this city, for the perverted actions of an individual. All the religious communities have demonstrated their strong ethos and tradition of service, as well as their support for the rule of law and democratic values. The cause of those who perpetrate such acts as this will be served if communities start to distrust or turn upon one another. Every day in Birmingham we see examples of creative, productive and supportive relations across the faiths. We should unite in our condemnation and strive to create better, stronger relations with fellow citizens, especially in trying times. We are determined that the murderous actions of the very few will not prevail over the goodness which lies at the basis both of our local communities and the faiths we espouse.
From the Executive Secretary
Jonathan Gurling, 36 St Stephen’s Road, Selly Park, Birmingham B29 7RP
Notes to Editors
· The Birmingham Faith Leaders’ Group was formed in September 2001 as a direct
response to acts of retaliation taken by some against local Muslim and other targets
in the immediate aftermath of 9/11. Across its 15 year of existence the Group has
always worked to strengthen the good relations which exist between different
communities of faith in Birmingham.
· The Group includes the principal leadership figures in the Buddhist, Christian, Hindu,
Jewish, Muslim and Sikh communities in Birmingham.
· The main purpose of the Group is to be a platform for mutual support and
understanding among those exercising leadership in the six major faith communities,
to promote and publicise good relations and to advocate for faith, among the civic,
commercial, public, media and voluntary sectors in the city