Board of Deputies Vice President Marie van der Zyl has expressed the desire that there will be good relations between the Jewish community of Golders Green and the new Hussainiyat Al-Rasool Al-Adham Community Centre in Golders Green, following a dialogue between the two organisations.
Marie said: “I have spoken to representatives from the Hussainiyat Al-Rasool Al-Adham Community Centre in Golders Green. We have raised some of the concerns of local Jewish residents, including parking, and were pleased to hear about the proactive measures the Centre is suggesting. We were heartened to hear about their commitment to opposing antisemitism and extremism. We, in turn, told them that we stand firmly opposed to anti-Muslim hatred, from whichever quarter it comes. While there are legitimate concerns around planning that should be addressed, we deplore the uninformed and prejudiced comments about this application, including from a small number of members of our own community. We would encourage all to foster good relations and to be good neighbours.
Ahmad Alkazemi, Public Relations Manager of Hussainiyat Al-Rasool Al-Adham said: “Hussainiyat Al-Rasool Al-Adham greatly appreciate that the Board of Deputies of British Jews has reached out to our community to discuss local concerns about our planning application. As we have explained in our dialogue with Board Vice President Marie van der Zyl, we look forward to playing our part in Golders Green’s diverse community, and we will always act as considerate neighbours and sincere friends towards the Jewish and other residents of this area.
“With this in mind, we would welcome dialogue with local residents about any concerns they have. For example, we are aware of some concerns regarding parking. To address this, we have already begun a campaign to encourage our community members to use public transport, with printed information about bus and tube routes, and incentives for those who do use public transport instead of driving. We are also asking the council to tighten local parking restrictions, so that street parking is reserved for local residents for longer hours, and we are seeking council permission to install bicycle racks as well.
“Hussainiyat Al-Rasool Al-Adham will never tolerate any form of hate speech on our premises, and we stand completely opposed to and will firmly address extremism, antisemitism and all forms of hatred, through education and bridge building. We regard Jews and Christians alike as our friends. We are grateful to the Board of Deputies and the many others in the Jewish community for their record in combating all forms of racism, including antisemitism and anti-Muslim hatred.”
Photo: Interfaith and Social Action Officer Anthony Silkoff and Vice President Marie van der Zyl during a visit to the Hussainiyat Al-Rasool Al-Adham Community Centre this week