|Kenyan Anglican church backs Israel divestment call |
By Fredrick Nzwili
Tuesday, July 05, 2005
|[Ecumenical News International] Nairobi -- The Anglican Church of Kenya has backed a call from a top committee of the 75 million-member Anglican Communion urging churches to divest from companies whose activities contribute to the occupation of Palestinian land or to violence against innocent Israelis. |
"No person who believes in justice and human dignity can really support Israel in whatever it is doing," Kenyan Bishop Gideon Ireri, who heads the church's peace and justice network, told journalists on 1 July at the end of a synod meeting. "You only have to go there and [you will] sympathise with the Palestinians especially when it comes to the separation wall."
A June meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council in Nottingham, England, unanimously recommended the divestment policy to Anglican churches around the world. The resolution followed a visit to the region in 2004 by members of the Anglican Peace and Justice Network.
"What you see there is the atrocities committed by the Israel government in the occupied Palestine territories and the mistreatment of the * women and men at the road blocks," said Ireri, who represented the Kenyan church in the 2004 fact-finding visit.
Israeli officials have condemned the decision by the international Anglican body as "one sided" and not conducive to current peace efforts.
The Anglican resolution followed a decision by the US Episcopal (Anglican) Church to take steps to prevent its churches' investments from inadvertently supporting Israeli occupation.