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Special Service for Iraq Conflict

Last updated: 2003-03-26

A special service in light of the Iraq conflict was organised by the UK's three mainstream synagogual bodies. The purpose of the occasion was to show the support of British Jews for the UK armed forces currently in action in Iraq and to express sympathy and condolences to the families whose loved ones have been lost.

The service comprised prayers and psalms. The congregation, which included many leading Rabbis and laypeople from the three synagogual bodies, was addressed by the Chief Rabbi who also recited a special prayer that the efforts of coalition forces be "crowned with success".

Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis of Finchley United Synagogue opened the proceedings. Dayan Yisroel Y Lichtenstein Rosh Beis Din of the Federation of Synagogues led the congregation in reciting psalms/tehillim. Rabbi Dr Abraham Levy, Spiritual Head of the Spanish and Portuguese Jews' Congregation, recited the Prayer for the Royal Family and Rabbi Z Meir Salasnik, Chairman of the Rabbinical Council of the United Synagogue read the prayer for the State of Israel and the Israeli Defence Force.

Andrew Dismore MP read a special message to the Jewish community from Geoff Hoon MP, Secretary of State for Defence. The Ambassador of Israel, Lord (Michael) Levy and the escort to the Mayor of Barnet (and GLA member) Brian Coleman also attended.

The Shabbaton Choir sang Shema Koleinu and signing for the deaf was provided by the Jewish Deaf Association.

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