Accessibility Tools

Skip to main content

Official Statement on the Israel-Hamas War

October 19, 2023

The Board of Trustees of the Parliament of the World’s Religions–after much thought, prayer and heartfelt deliberation, realizing the complex and critical situation at hand–issues the following majority but non-unanimous statement:

In the midst of the Israel-Hamas War, the Parliament of the World’s Religions prays for those suffering. We acknowledge the right of a people to self-defense within the bounds of international law and call for the release of all hostages and the cessation of hostilities. We call for the norms of international humanitarian law to be respected by all parties as they seek to resolve this escalating war through peaceful dialogue and negotiation. Our traditions teach us of the dignity of all human beings, and that all life must be respected and cherished as sacred and inviolable. Terrorism, violence, killing, rape, and kidnapping committed against civilians is NOT ACCEPTABLE in any situation or against any person or group of people whether committed by individuals, non-state actors, or states. As an Interfaith organization, we particularly abhor the destruction of sacred spaces, the misuse of religion for violence, and the demonization of entire communities of people. Our hearts grieve for the lives lost and the peoples now living in fear.

We extend an urgent call to respect the human rights of all people. We demand that the United Nations and the international community commit to the de-escalation of violence and to the immediate provision of humanitarian aid and assistance to all those in need.

We commend the interfaith and humanitarian organizations working on the ground to bring humanitarian aid and assistance to the victims of these attacks and the communities most affected by this escalating war.

In times like this, when the death toll rises, every minute is critical. We must stand resolute with the understanding that all humanity is our family and what hurts one, hurts us all.

May peace prevail on Earth.