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Message from IFN Co-Chairs to member bodies

27 July 2016

Dear Inter Faith Network contact,

The spate of murderous violence perpetrated by those claiming a link to ISIL, or said by that body to have such a link, continues in different parts of the world with further murders in Germany and the murder of a Catholic priest in France yesterday during a morning Mass.

We and the Vice-Chairs have issued a number of statements in recent months which have relevance to the impact of terrorism around the globe in the context of community relations in the UK. These can be seen on the Statements and Messages page.

As we said in our Statement of 15 July following the atrocity in Nice, “Such attacks are designed to rupture the fabric of civil society - not just in France but throughout Europe and beyond: to create suspicion, fear and hatred. It is vital that in the UK we continue to work for a society which is marked by commitment to tackle tough issues with honesty and constructiveness and to work peacefully to resolve disagreement. Extreme voices and actions have no part in this. Communities will, and must, continue to reject and stand against brutal violence where it is claimed by perpetrators to be in the name of their religion. It is vital, too, that we support communities that may be rendered vulnerable by events overseas or at home. There must be no room for prejudice which singles out any community because of criminal actions carried out by a few in the name of its religion.”

The IFN website will be carrying information about responses to the present situation in the UK inter faith context such as the message issued yesterday by the office of Cardinal Nichols, President of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales: http://www.catholic-ew.org.uk/Home/News/Faith-Leaders-Statement

Best wishes, Bishop Richard and Vivian

Note: IFN’s focus is inter faith relations in the UK and its policy on statements reflects this. This can be seen here.