Sheikh Ahmed Juma of the Lower Galilee town of Sulam is using the current conflict to demonstrate the true spirit of co-existence.
As Israelis from the southern regions of the country seek shelter from incessant Hamas rocket attacks, Juma has opened the doors of his home as a safe haven.
“We are all Israelis and I favor coexistence,” Juma told Channel 2. “You will be safe here.”
Many Israelis from the north of the country are in fact hosting the residents of the south, particularly those with young children. But receiving such an invitation from an Arab Muslim official strikes many as odd, considering that many Arabs in the country are celebrating Hamas’ assault on the Jewish state.
But the 32-year-old Juma, who recently finished his studies in Sharia at Hebron University, said that is not his way. “Anyone is welcome, my door is open,” he said.
Juma sought to reassure any Israelis considering his offer that Sulam is not a hostile village, and that Jews would feel safe there.
Uri Schlossberg, a friend of Juma’s from the Tel Aviv suburb of Givatayim, confirmed the sheikh’s assertion and his generosity.
“The residents of the south would have nothing to fear in coming to this village” or to Juma’s home, Schlossberg told Channel 2. “[Juma] is an exemplary man of peace.”