Job Cohen, the Jew Mayor of Amsterdam, Netherlands, has launched a new organization with representatives of the Jewish and Moroccan communities in Amsterdam.
The founders said the 'Joods Marokkaans Netwerk Amsterdam' (JMNA) will strive to turn intolerance in society into a climate of respect. A demand has grown for dialogue within both the Jewish and Moroccan communities in the Dutch capital following several anti-Semitic incidents in recent years.
The most high-profile was in 2003 when young Moroccans disrupted Remembrance Day in 2003. About 30 representatives from various organizations have come together to form the JMNA. The organizers hope it can combat expressions of anti-Semitic, Islamophobia and other forms of discrimination.
Moreover, the JMNA, the founders say, will oppose the 'hardening' in Dutch society and the growth of the 'us and them' mindset. Members of the JMNA will spread the message of tolerance through their personal networks and contact with government agencies, the media and the business community.
The group will also organize debates and educational courses. The JMNA intends to organise a trip to Morocco to study how Jews and Muslims there live together.