The European Council of Religious Leaders is deeply saddened by, and unequivocally condemns, the devastating terrorist attack at Manchester Arena which took the lives of 22 people including innocent children, and left many others seriously wounded. It is beyond our comprehension how anyone can carry out such a tragic and misguided act and believe it can be justified in any way.
As a Council of religious leaders from all the major world religions, we unanimously and unequivocally reject erroneous and cowardly interpretations of religion, and deplore acts of violence, aggression and discrimination committed by anyone in the name of any religious, political or national ideology.
This type of shocking event reminds us of why as a Council we are committed to working closely together to help build respectful and harmonious societies where everyone can flourish and be respected for who they are and what they believe. We cannot allow these types of dreadful events to shape our attitudes and societies. The acts of kindness and sacrifice that were shown by the people of Manchester, and the way in which people from across the UK and Europe have come together to aid those in need and collectively grieve, are an example to us all.
Evidently at this time our thoughts and deepest prayers are with the victims and their families. As a Council this tragic event makes us even more determined to do our utmost to bring peace, love and understanding to our communities and societies.