Virtual event

Colorado Leaders Hold Virtual Event At Wake Of Colleyville

DENVER, CO — In response to Saturday’s hostage-taking at a synagogue in Colleyville, Texas, community, government, and faith leaders in Colorado will participate in a virtual event on Tuesday titled “Responding to Antisemitism: An Interfaith Call to the action”. The public is invited to attend.

The event will take place from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. and several speakers will participate, including: Colorado Governor Jared Polis, Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser, State Rep. Iman Jodeh, Representatives from Downtown Denver Islamic Center, Denver Police Chief. Paul Pazen and Scott Levin, Regional Director of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) Mountain States Region

The discussion comes just three days after a gunman held four hostages — three of them for more than 10 hours — during a service at Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville.

The hostages eventually escaped. Two of them — Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker and Jeffrey R. Cohen — described their escape on television and social media Monday.

Authorities killed the hostage taker, who The Associated Press identified as 44-year-old British national Malik Faisal Akram. According to AP, Akram could be heard ranting on a Facebook livestream from the services and demanding the release of Aafia Siddiqui, a Pakistani neuroscientist suspected of having ties to al-Qaeda who was found guilty of attempting to kill security officers. the US Army in Afghanistan.

“This attack on a sacred community in the midst of such services should be important to everyone,” said ADL’s Levin. “It is a fundamental principle that all of us, regardless of our religion, should be allowed to pray without fear. Anti-Semitism has reached a fever pitch in the United States. The whole country should be alarmed when there is violence at any time. place of worship.”

Other members of Colorado’s Jewish community expressed solidarity with the victims held in Colleyville, while thanking law enforcement for their role in the escape.

“We are also filled with gratitude to the more than 200 law enforcement professionals and multiple agencies who worked together to resolve the hostage situation and maintained constant communication with our SCN (Secure Community Network) partners. , an affiliate of the Jewish Federations of North America that monitors, advises and supports the safety and security of Jewish institutions,” said Jonathan Lev, Executive Director of Boulder JCC

Lev added, “Over the past year, our community has experienced multiple tragedies. Learning of the tragedies at home and across the country has weighed heavily on my heart, and I know for many of you as well. The JCC is here for you, for our community, because we support each other.

Tuesday night’s interfaith event, sponsored by the Anti-Defamation League, JEWISHcolorado and Rocky Mountain Rabbis and Cantors, will be streamed live on JEWISHcolorado.org, Facebook and YouTube.