The World Jewish Congress Executive Committee held its 2017 meeting in London, to set the WJC’s agenda for the coming year and adopt policy resolutions on behalf of the 100 Jewish communities worldwide represented by the organization. WJC President Ronald S. Lauder told members of the executive that the primary goal of the international body in coming years must be to increase Jewish unity, as part of the overall efforts to ensure the security and identity of Jewish communities in the face of rising anti-Semitism.
"Anti-Semitism is growing across the globe and is targeting all Jews, whether Orthodox or Reform, Left or Right,” Lauder said. “The most important goal facing the WJC today in our daily and global struggle against anti-Semitism is mending the divisive rifts and building Jewish unity – between all organizations, and regardless of religious denominations or political affiliations.”
In welcoming the committee members, Governing Board Chairman David de Rothschild noted the 16th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the United States. He also drew attention to the fact that this year’s opening section was taking place in the very same hall as the inaugural reception of the first session of the United Nations General Assembly in January 1946.
Within the framework of the annual meeting, Britain’s House of Commons Speaker John Bercow, told members of the WJC’s Executive Committee that threats against the Jewish community in the United Kingdom, Europe, and the World at large must not be met with complacency.
“There are still people denying the Holocaust or alternatively glorying in it and holding up Adolf Hitler as being a great figure in our history,” Bercow said. “So we should not be paranoid but equally we should not be complacent. There is a threat to Jewish people and to Jewish security in this country and indeed in Europe and around the world.”