While in Israel's south the violence continued to escalate, a diverse group of religious leaders showed their unity and called for an end to the violence in an interfaith march, held on Wednesday in the capital of Jerusalem.
Their message: "Israel has embarked on another round of futile violence - our mission: we must put aside hatred, and work together for a future of peace, partnership and justice."
Jewish, Christian and Muslim religious leaders
The group included dozens of Jewish, Christian and Muslim religious leaders all promoting peace, equality and justice while marching in unison, starting from Zion square in downtown Jerusalem.
At the end of the march, participants gathered for a prayer and singing circle outside of Jaffa Gate at Jerusalem's Old City.
"Precisely in tense and difficult times like these, our march together - Jews, Muslims and Christians - in favor of peace and equality, reminds us that it can be different here," said CEO of Rabbinic Voice for Human Rights, Avi Dabush, one of the organizers. "We will not give in to attempts to divide our people, and we will not allow religion to be used as a tool for hatred, division and incitement. In the face of a fanatical leadership that leads to violence, we seek to draw inspiration for courageous religious leadership."
Dozens of peace and interfaith dialogue organizations participated in the march, including: Rabbis for Human Rights, Israeli Rabbis Network, the Reform Movement in Israel, the Scottish Church, Churches for Peace in the Middle East, the Ahmadiyya Islamic Community, the Interfaith Encounter Association, Interfaith Center for Sustainable Development, Interfaith Initiative in the Negev, the Interfaith Group in the Galilee, Midreshet Hannaton, Masorti Movement, Spirit of the Galilee Leadership Group and the Swedish Theological Institute.
It also was held on the fiftieth anniversary of the death of Rabbi Avraham Yehoshua Heschel and inspired by the protest marches from Selma to Montgomery led by Martin Luther King, in which Heschel himself participated.
Rabbi Art Green and Sheikh Amir Mahmoud Sharif Odeh were among the prominent leaders in the march.