Keir Starmer signs a cross-party letter to the Camden New Journal following the terror attacks in Paris. The authors say 'Our best chance of protecting Camden and our wider community lies in us working together, across religious, cultural and other lines, to champion virtues of respect, acceptance and tolerance.'
It was published in the Camden New Journal and can be read below and on the CNJ website.
WE are deeply shocked and saddened by the appalling attacks in Paris last weekend. We condemn these monstrous attacks unreservedly and send our deepest sympathies to the families and friends of those affected and to the people of France. We also wish to recognise the exceptional service of all emergency personnel called upon to deal with the consequences of these barbaric acts.
We deplore such acts of violence wherever in the world they occur. To claim that the taking of innocent human life could in any way be a “religious act” is a wicked perversion of faith. Such an interpretation should have no place in any of the world’s great religions.
It is important to remember that, despite their claims, the groups responsible for the recent attacks in Paris, Beirut and elsewhere follow a hateful and perverted ideology and do not represent the overwhelming majority of Muslims across the world.
In the face of this inhuman violence, we call on the diverse communities of Camden to come together and demonstrate their absolute rejection of the twisted values used to justify these atrocious acts and others across the world.
We must work together with strengthened resolve to confront this evil ideology wherever in our society it appears. It is only by standing together that we will defeat those who seek to misrepresent religious teachings and sow seeds of hatred in our communities. We commend the multi-faith Vigil for Paris that took place on Saturday night in Trafalgar Square. This powerful act brought together the UK’s main faith communities to show solidarity with the people of Paris in their hour of need.
There can be no absolute guarantees when it comes to the fight against terrorism and we must always remain vigilant. Our best chance of protecting Camden and our wider community lies in us working together, across religious, cultural and other lines, to champion virtues of respect, acceptance and tolerance.
KEIR STARMER QC MP (Holborn and St Pancras)
TULIP SIDDIQ MP (Hampstead and Kilburn)
CLLR SARAH HAYWARD, Leader of the London Borough of Camden
CLLR CLAIRE LOUISE-LEYLAND, Leader of the Opposition, London Borough of Camden
CLLR FLICK REA, Liberal Democrats
CLLR SIAN BERRY, the Green Party
CLLR ABDUL HAI, Cabinet Member for Customers, Communities and Culture
CLLR PHIL ROSENBERG, Co-Chair, Camden Faith Leaders’ Forum