Israeli Ambassador’s remarks irk Muslims
Israeli Ambassador Mark Sofer’s remarks that “Israel was not in any way in conflict with Islam” during his recent visit to Jaipur has surprised Muslim groups in Rajasthan. They feel that Sofer’s remarks should be measured in the context of eviction of hundreds of thousands of Palestinian Muslims, illegal construction of Jewish settlements and threats to the historic Al-Aqsa Mosque. The observation made by the Israeli Ambassador on the Arab Israeli conflict is in contrast to the ground realities as the Jewish State continues to suppress Muslims in the occupied areas. Rajasthan Muslim Forum reacted sharply to this statement and said, “The very establishment of Israel on the Palestinian land in 1948 was the outcome of an alliance forged between Zionism and European colonialism based on a weird mixture of religious myths and colonial interests leading to the Balfour Declaration.” Mohammad Salim, state president JIH said, “In spite of all this, Mr. Sofer observing that Israel is not in conflict with Islam is outrageous. Israel’s official policies involve religious discrimination in its dispute with Palestinians who have been [rendered] homeless in their own land,” The Muslim Forum has expressed its concern over Indo-Israel defence agreement. On a routine basis it has been seen that Indian delegates visit Israel to learn about its development projects and to carry out the same in India without considering the consequences in the long run. Recently, a delegation led by BJP chief Nitin Gadkari went to Israel on a “goodwill" visit.