Washington, D.C. – On Monday, July 31, Dr. Maher Hathout, Rev. George Regas and Rabbi Leonard Beerman met with Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) in their Senate office building in Washington, D.C. to discuss the recent crisis in the Middle East. The three religious leaders expressed a commitment to peace and human rights and articulated the need for an immediate ceasefire to the escalating violence in the Middle East.
Hathout, Regas and Beerman previously held an interfaith vigil to end the occupation on July 16 at the Islamic Center of Southern California.
The three leaders have also worked since 1991 to end war in the Middle East. Their trip to D.C. attempted to raise the level of consciousness on behalf of people of faith. The interfaith delegation expressed the need for voices of peace to be heard by national elected officials.
Both Senator Boxer and Senator Feinstein expressed their desire to engage with the Muslim community and with the larger interfaith community to discuss the importance of dialogue among all three groups. Senator Boxer committed to a press conference with these three leaders in order to enhance the level of discourse on the Middle East. Senator Feinstein also stated the importance of meeting with the Muslim community in California upon her return to the state.
"Today represents a positive step for increasing the role of the peace and justice communities with decisionmakers," stated MPAC Executive Director Salam Al-Marayati. Both meetings were a positive step towards civil discourse. MPAC urges the community to contact Senator Boxer and Senator Feinstein to thank them for being exemplary in their inclusion of all sides of discourse on the Middle East.
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