The Coordinating Committee of the Jewish Organisations of Belgium (CCOJB) distanced itself from the remarks made by the president of the Central Jewish Consistory of Belgium on Thursday in the Walloon Parliament on the issue of ritual slaughter, while supporting the position he defended in principle.
“The CCOJB distances itself from the remarks which must be clarified or withdrawn by their originator in view of their gravity”, the Committee said in a statement.
In the Walloon Parliament’s committee on proposals for a Walloon decree to ban the slaughtering of animals without prior stunning, Conservatory President Philippe Markiewicz indignantly demanded that the deputies do not “do the same thing” that Nazi occupiers did in 1940, having attacked the ritual slaughter practices of the Jews.
On the other hand, the CCOJB agreed with the Consistory’s statement that “a country which forbids Jewish and Muslim rites by making obligatory an electrical device (electronarcosis, editor’s note) that is randomly effective, without worrying about animals being boiled alive (Markiewicz mentioned the cooking of lobster on Thursday, editor’s note) or legislative infringements on the principle of minimising animal suffering for purely economic reasons (battery farming, etc.) is a country that is telling Jews and Muslims that they are no longer welcome”, according to the president of the CCOJB , Yohan Benizri.
In his view, “the prohibition of ritual slaughter was once justified by violent anti-Semitism”. “Today, it is justified by its promoters by the concern for animal welfare”, he added.