Politico

CAIR to boycott White House Eid celebration over Israel support


The Council on American-Islamic Relations on Saturday said it will boycott the traditional White House Eid celebration in protest at the Biden administration’s actions amid escalating violence between Israeli and Palestinian forces.

President Joe Biden spoke to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday, assuring him of U.S. support for Israel as it fends off Hamas-fired rockets and retaliates with airstrikes in Gaza. “My expectation and hope is this will be closing down sooner than later, but Israel has a right to defend itself,” Biden told reporters. The two leaders also talked Saturday, according to an Israeli readout.

In a statement, the Muslim advocacy group said it was “incredibly disappointed and deeply disturbed” by the administration’s position in response to the violence. “President Biden has the political power and moral authority to stop these injustices. We urge him to stand on the side of the victims and not the victimizer,” CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad added.

On Saturday, an Israeli airstrike destroyed a high-rise building in Gaza City that housed offices of the Associated Press and other media outlets, in a strike that came hours after another Israeli air raid on a densely populated refugee camp in Gaza City killed at least 10 Palestinians from an extended family, mostly children, in the deadliest single strike of the current conflict. The spiraling violence has raised fears of a new Palestinian “intifada,” or uprising at a time when there have been no peace talks in years.

American Muslims for Palestine is also boycotting the White House’s virtual Eid celebration, which is scheduled to take place Sunday. CAIR had previously boycotted multiple traditional White House events under the Trump administration.

In a statement released by the White House on Friday, Biden said: “Jill and I are looking forward to the White House’s commemoration of Eid this Sunday. We were heartened to see Eid celebrations around the world, but we know that this year, the situation in the Holy Land is weighing heavily on Muslims everywhere, including our Muslim communities here in the United States.“

“Palestinians—including in Gaza—and Israelis equally deserve to live in dignity, safety and security. No family should have to fear for their safety within their own home or place of worship. We think most about the children in these societies who face trauma from a conflict far beyond their control. My administration will continue to engage Palestinians, Israelis, and other regional partners to work towards a sustainable calm.”

Continue

About the author

Lisa

Leave a Comment