Ephraim Mirvis

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Ephraim Mirvis in 2015

Ephraim Mirvis (born 7 September 1956) is an Orthodox rabbi who serves as the Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth.


  • I grew up in South Africa, so believe me when I say: Israel is not an apartheid state ... The difference between the two countries could scarcely be more stark. Under apartheid, a legal structure of racial hierarchy governed all aspects of life. Black South Africans were denied the vote. They were required by law to live, work, study, travel, enjoy leisure activities, receive medical treatment and even go to the lavatory separately from those with a different colour of skin. Interracial relationships and marriages were illegal. It was subjugation in its rawest form. Contrast that with Israel, a country whose Arab, Druze, Bedouin, Ethiopian, Russian, Baha’i, Armenian and other citizens have equal status under the law. Anyone who truly understands what apartheid was cannot possibly look around Israel today and honestly claim there is any kind of parity.

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