International: Saudi King Extends Invite to Jews for Interfaith Meet

May 26, 2008

Author: Shlomo Shamir

Source: Haaretz

Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah has sent an invitation to the World Jewish Congress for an interfaith dialogue with Muslim and Christian leaders, Haaretz has learned.

While the date and location of the meeting has not been announced, sources have told Haaretz that King Abdullah seeks to hold the meet in Saudi Arabia, no small feat as the country is ruled by Islamic Sharia law and currently does not allow the entry of holders of Israeli passports or those whose passports bear entry visas from Israel. The country also bans all non-Muslim prayer in public.

WJC President Ronald Lauder issued a statement Monday saying that "despite all the obstacles that may still be in the way, King Abdullah's initiative is a laudable step forward. We hope that other religious leaders and political leaders throughout the world will be encouraged to join."