Religious leaders express solidarity following Manchester attack

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There was a police presence outside the Royal Shakespeare Theratre this afternoon in Stratford as flags flew at half mast across the district. Photos: Mark Williamson

The leader of Stratford’s Muslim Association and the chair of the Warwick District Faiths Forum have joined religious leaders from across the region in signing a statement expressing their solidarity in response to Monday’s terrorist attack in Manchester.

Hobbs Bashir of the Stratford Muslim Association and Jatinder S Birdi, Chair of the Warwick District Faiths Forum have joined eight other religious leaders in the region in signing the statement.

It reads: “Our hearts rage against the assault on life at the Manchester Arena – this murder of the innocents, so many of them young. We stand with the people of Manchester, and towns and cities across the Northwest, in their grief and suffering. We pray for them.

“This outbreak of evil seeks to cause fear, sow seeds of distrust between peoples and even drive communities apart. We will resist it. We will turn our rage to good.

“We call on all our communities to be one community, united in resolve, showing together that the strength of human goodness overcomes the cowardice of acts of terror.

“We stand together in Coventry and Warwickshire for peace in our world and reconciliation between peoples.  As leaders of different religious traditions, we stand together in Coventry and Warwickshire to condemn such cowardly acts that are not in any religious teaching, and for peace in our world and reconciliation between peoples.”