The Greater Hartford Jewish community is horrified by the senseless killings that have taken place over the last two weeks in Israel. We are deeply concerned and pained by the escalating violence which has taken the lives of so many innocent people and we pray that calm will be restored as quickly as possible.
This morning we learned that Richard Lakin, a former member of our community who made Aliyah many years ago, was one of the victims of yesterday's attacks. He was shot and stabbed and is now in the hospital being treated for his wounds. Our thoughts and prayers go out to him, his wife Karen and his family, and hope for a Refuah Shlemah, a full and speedy recovery.
Along with our national partners, the Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford stands alert to monitor the situation so we can will keep our community informed about any developments on the ground and any actions we can take to help bring comfort to the families whose loved ones have been killed.
Federations have invested for decades to help Israel respond in crises like these. Thanks to our support the Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI) established the Fund for the Victims of Terror, which is a standing resource that provides immediate and direct assistance to many of those directly affected by terrorist attacks.
Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA) will host a conference call with Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat TOMORROW at 12:30 PM ET. He will brief us about events in Jerusalem and steps being taken to address the situation. You can call in using this number: 18003990118. No ID is required. The call is a resource for you to learn first-hand what is happening on the ground in Israel.
Yesterday, JFNA issued the following statement that fully expresses what I believe many of us are feeling:
"We continue to mourn for those who have been murdered and pray for their families, and we wish for a full and speedy recovery to all of those who have been injured. No family should have to endure such pain and suffering," said Jerry Silverman, President and CEO of The Jewish Federations of North America. "There is no possible justification for these senseless attacks and we continue to stand in solidarity with the State of Israel."
The Federation strongly supports the Government of Israel's efforts to provide the necessary security for its citizens. It is time for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to say, in his own language and to his own people: the violence must stop. As we pray for the injured victims and mourn with the families shattered by this senseless violence, it is time to insist upon direct and meaningful dialogue that leads to actions aimed at restoring calm.
We are most appreciative of the statement issued by the U.S. Department of State condemning in the strongest terms today's terrorist attacks against Israeli civilians. We urge President Barack Obama to support the Israeli government's security efforts without reservation and ask him to call on the Palestinian Authority to use all possible measures to end this violence now.
The Jewish Federation of North America's Jerusalem office and our JCRC are keeping a close watch on the situation, including liaising with the Israeli government, and we will continue to provide updates as the situation unfolds.
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem, throughout Israel and the entire region.
President & CEO