Al-Azhar institution on Friday denounced a new law adopted in Israel defining the country as the nation state of the Jewish people, describing it as “racist”.
“Al-Azhar strongly denounces…what is being called the national Jewish state law, in a move that reflects ugly racism and proves the true nature of that occupation,” the historic Islamic institution said in its statement which was shared on its social media accounts.
On Thursday, Israel’s Knesset approved and issued a law defining the country as the nation state of the Jewish people and making Hebrew the official language. It also defines the establishment of Jewish communities as being in the national interest.
The law has provoked fears regionally and internationally that it will lead to discrimination against Arab citizens in Israel.
Al-Azhar also stated that issuing the law was another episode in a series of violations and attacks against the Palestinian people, started with the Balfour Declaration of 1917 and up until the recent US decision to transfer its embassy to the city of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
“Palestine will remain Arab and it is a genuine right for its Arab people, with their different religion and sects,” the statement said.
“These racist decisions will fail in the face of the resilience and sacrifices of the Palestinian people and their right to have an independent state whose capital is Jerusalem,” Al-Azhar said.
Al-Azhar is considered one of the biggest and most influential Sunni institutions in the world.