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Opening ceremony for Zurich Cantonal Parliament and Executive Council in the synagogue of the Jewish Community Zurich (ICZ) on 8 May 2006
- Indication: Pictures can be downloaded under: http://www.presseportal.ch/de/story.htx?firmaid=100005346&lang=2 -
Zurich Cantonal Parliament and Executive Council hold official opening ceremony for the 2006/2007 parliamentary year in the synagogue of the Jewish Community Zurich (ICZ)
Zurich (ots) - The new constitution of the Canton of Zurich, approved by the electorate in spring 2005, contained a special article which granted the two Jewish community organizations - the Jewish Community Zurich (ICZ) and the Liberal Jewish Community (JLG) - recognition under public law. One hundred and fifty years after Jews received the right to settle in Canton Zurich, the new constitution gives the Jewish community a similar status to that accorded the Christian churches. This is recognition in the political sphere for the status the Jewish community has enjoyed for decades in its day-to-day contact with the public and above all the authorities.
It was against this background that Hartmuth Attenhofer, the president designate of the cantonal parliament for 2006/2007, had the idea of holding the ceremony to mark the opening of the legislative period in a synagogue, rather than in a church as is customary. The offer was received with enthusiasm by the Jewish community in Zurich since it turned the enactment of a simple constitutional article into a grand official act.
The official opening took place today in an impressive and dignified ceremony at the Löwenstrasse Synagogue. The presence of over 100 members of the Cantonal Council and the entire Executive Council, as well as a large delegation from the Zurich City Council and numerous guests from all political circles, gave the ceremony a special character and filled every available seat in the synagogue. The great interest in the ceremony shown by members of both Jewish community organizations, ICZ and JLG, underlined the significance of the event for the canton's Jews.
This special act of recognition is of great symbolic significance - not only for the Jewish people of Zurich, but for the Jewish community throughout Switzerland and indeed for Jews and other minority groups all over the world. It underlines the fact that minorities in Zurich and Switzerland as a whole are well-integrated and accepted, despite occasional statements to the contrary from certain political quarters. The example of Zurich should stand as a beacon and sends out a signal to the world about how successfully different population groups can live together.
ots Originaltext: ICZ - Jewish Community Zurich
ICZ - Jewish Community Zurich
Harry Berg, President
Beni Witztum, General Secretary
JLG - Liberal Jewish Community
Nicole Poëll, President