ADL Commends Church of England’s Decision to Bar Rev. Stephen Sizer Following Disturbing Facebook Post

New York, NY, February 11, 2015 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today welcomed the decision by the Church of England’s Diocese of Guildford to bar Rev. Stephen Sizer from “writing or speaking on any theme that relates, either directly or indirectly, to the current situation in the Middle East or to its historical backdrop.”

ADL commended Right Rev. Andrew Watson, the Bishop of Guildford, for his statements calling Sizer’s actions “indefensible” and “ridiculous.” Last month, the League welcomed the Church’s initial decision to launch a formal investigation into the online comments, which included a link on Facebook to an article titled, “9/11 Israel did it.”

“The Diocese of Guildford has demonstrated that it will not tolerate bias and prejudice from its vicars,” said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. “In doing so, it has taken a courageous stand against inflammatory rhetoric promoting the kind of hatred and violence that, unfortunately, seems to be increasingly prevalent.”

Mr. Foxman added, “We are grateful to the Diocese for its decisive action.”

In 2012, as a result of another Church investigation, Rev. Sizer agreed that links to websites should be carefully monitored. In 2014, Rev. Sizer participated in a conference in Tehran, Iran that included several anti-Israel activists, anti-Semitic conspiracy theorists and Holocaust deniers.

The Anti-Defamation League was founded in 1913 to stop the defamation of the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment to all. Today it is the world’s leading organization combating anti-Semitism, exposing hate groups, training law enforcement on hate crimes, developing anti-bias education programs for students, countering cyber-hate and relentlessly pursuing equal rights for all.

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