(May 24, 2020 / JNS) Israeli President Reuven Rivlin and other prominent figures took to social media this weekend to extend greetings to Israel’s Muslims in honor of Eid al-Fitr, the holiday that marks the end of the month of Ramadan.
Rivlin addressed his “warmest greeting on Eid al-Fitr” to “Israelis of the Muslim faith” in a message on social media on Saturday night.
“This year, with [the coronavirus pandemic], Holy Ramadan has been somewhat different,” he tweeted In a Hebrew video clip with Arabic and English subtitles. “This year, for our health, there were no large joint prayers, the traditional markets were closed and festive Iftar meals were not held with friends and family. … But I hope that, because of the commitment we all showed the need for caution, that we will soon see the light at the end of the tunnel.”
Rivlin praised the country’s health workers for their “astonishing solidarity” amid the crisis, and the leaders of the country’s Arab-Muslim society for their “patience and wisdom.”
“[W]e have been so proud of our medical teams, Muslims, Christians, Jews and Druze, working hand in hand with astonishing solidarity to save human lives. We have also seen, up close, the strength of leadership, patience and wisdom of the leaders of Muslim Arab society in Israel, who have all contributed to containing the virus, and caring for the health and safety of all Israelis, Jews and Arabs, Jews and Muslims,” he said.
“Patience and solidarity, responsibility and good judgement must also be our watchwords in the period of economic and social recovery that lies ahead of us,” he added.
Defense Minister and Vice Prime Minister Banny Gantz also sent a holiday message to his “brothers and sisters, Muslim citizens of Israel.”
In a tweet on Saturday night, he wrote: “This year, the month of Ramadan was unusual. With noteworthy responsibility and concern, you went through the month without large prayers and festive meals. Happily, the collective responsibility in Israel bore fruit.”
U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman said in a video message on Twitter: “This year has brought with it new challenges, as the coronavirus has affected us all. The traditional Iftar meal was transformed, as social distancing kept many families and friends apart. This Ramadan, I was impressed by the incredible spirit of charity shown towards those in need, and the resilience of people of all ages, who have found new and innovative ways to connect with loved ones. Whether digitally or time in person, we look forward to continuing to connect with Palestinians and Israelis to address the common challenges we face and to promote our shared values.”
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