A group of American rabbis welcome Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's visit to New York in a move aimed at countering an anti-Iran protest.
Iran promotes peace and respects Judaism, spokesman of Neturei Karta International (Jews United Against Zionism) Rabbi Yisroel Dovid Weiss said in a statement issued on the eve of President Ahmadinejad's visit to New York.
This is while a pro-Israeli group called the Conference of Presidents of Major American Organizations has made efforts to organize a rally in front of the UN headquarters on Sunday to protest President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's arrival in the US.
Neturei Karta International, however, took quite a contrary position toward Ahmadinejad's visit and called for dialogue with the Iranian president.
"It is sad that so few have actually attempted to speak to the Iranian President or seek the true opinion of Iranian Jewry who live in peace and practice their faith throughout that nation. We have met this man who has demonstrated time and again that he is sincerely interested in the well being of Iran's Jewish community and has deep respect for world Jewry and their Torah faith. The Zionist attempt to socially isolate this man and his people is immoral and disastrous," said the statement.
"It has been our honor and privilege to meet with President Ahmadinejad ... we have found the Iranian President to be a deeply religious man, dedicated to a peaceful world, based on mutual respect, fairness and dialogue," Rabbi Weiss wrote.
"Out of great respect to the Iranian Nation and their leadership we proudly welcome the Honorable President Ahmadinejad to New York, WELCOME!" added the rabbi at the end of the statement.
Iran's President arrived at New York City's John F. Kennedy Airport on Sunday to address the 63rd annual session of the UN General Assembly on September 23.
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