May 14, 2018
In a letter to President Sebastian Piñera Echenique of Chile, ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt requested that the Chilean government take concrete steps to ensure the safety and security of the Chilean Jewish community, who are under siege from groups who promote extreme positions on Israel, specifically those who espouse Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS), and publicly convey the government’s opposition to any effort to target the community in reaction to developments in Israel.
April 23, 2018
His Excellency Sebastian Piñera Echenique
President of the Republic of Chile
Palacio de la Moneda
Dear Mr. President:
We extend our sincere congratulations on your inauguration as President of Chile and wish you success in your administration. Your leadership in your second term in office is more important now than ever especially as it relates to protecting the Chilean Jewish community.
As you may know, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) is an internationally recognized organization committed to fighting anti-Semitism and bigotry of all kinds. We work in the United States and internationally for a world in which human relations are based upon respect, understanding and dialogue.
On the days following the 70th anniversary of the founding of the State of Israel, we acknowledge that Jews around the world proudly celebrated this momentous occasion. Unfortunately, in times of heightened tensions in the Middle East, Chilean Jews have been under siege from groups who promote extreme positions on Israel, specifically those who espouse Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS). These groups have used public platforms in the Chilean National Congress, universities, media outlets and the public sphere to label Chilean Jews as Zionists and meaning it in derogatory terms. While there is certainly room for public discourse as it relates to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, there is no space in Chilean society for labeling pro-Israel Jews as evil.
In light of these developments, we urge you to take concrete steps to ensure the safety and security of the Chilean Jewish community who are your citizens, and publicly convey your government’s opposition to any effort to target the community in reaction to developments in Israel.
We look forward to meeting with you at a future date and continuing to work with your government on issues of mutual concern.
Please be assured of our highest personal regard for the Government and people of Chile.
CEO and National Director
cc: Shai Agosin, President of the Comunidad Judía de Chile
Marcelo Isaacson, Executive Director of the Comunidad Judía de Chile