The speech made by Rishi Sunak, the Prime Minister, at Finchley United Synagogue on 9 October 2023.
I wanted to come here tonight to stand with you.
To stand with you in this hour of grief as we mourn the victims of an utterly abhorrent act of terror.
To stand with you in this hour of prayer as we think of those held hostage and your friends and loved ones taking refuge in bomb shelters or risking their lives on the front line.
And, perhaps above all, I wanted to come here tonight to stand with you in solidarity in Israel’s hour of need.
As the Prime Minister of this country, I am unequivocal.
The people who support Hamas are fully responsible for this appalling attack.
They are not militants. They are not freedom fighters.
They are terrorists.
And their barbaric acts, are acts of evil.
There is no other word to describe what we have seen.
Teenagers at a festival of peace gunned down in cold blood.
Innocent men, women and children abducted, raped, slaughtered even a Holocaust survivor taken away as a captive.
And much of the sickening evidence posted online.
There are not two sides to these events.
There is no question of balance.
I stand with Israel.
We stand with Israel.
The United Kingdom stands with Israel against this terrorism today, tomorrow, and always.
And let me also say this to you, as the Jewish community here in Britain.
I know that at moments like this, when the Jewish people are under attack in their homeland Jewish people everywhere can feel less safe.
We’ve already seen vile words on our streets.
And attempts to stir up community tensions.
I say: not here. Not in Britain. Not in our country. Not in this century.
My first duty is to protect you.
We will not tolerate this hate; we will not tolerate this antisemitism.
And I promise you, I will stop at nothing to keep you safe.
And let me just conclude with this thought.
In the last few days, we have seen heinous acts, redolent of the worst of humanity.
And peace may feel further away than it has in a very long time.
But I know this too: The hope of Israel is built on the very best of humanity.
This extraordinary land, this democracy – the only one in the Middle East, where you can vote, where you can be gay.
This technological superpower, which delivers breakthroughs in science and medicine that are a gift to the world this promised homeland of the Jewish people.
In the words of the Hatikvah, that hope is not lost.
Even in these darkest of days – perhaps especially in these darkest days, together we hold fast to that hope of two thousand years.
The days and weeks ahead will continue to be very difficult.
But when we say that we stand with Israel, we mean it.
Not just today, not just tomorrow but always.
And I will stand with you, the British Jewish community, not just today, not just tomorrow, but always.
Am Yisrael Chai [the people of Israel live]