The British government has wished the Jewish community a Happy Pesach on the eve of the holiday in a number of ways through social media.

Jews across Britain and around the world are celebrating Pesach, or Passover, which started on the evening of 8th April and will conclude on the evening of 16th April 2020. This is a unique Passover, especially in Israel as the Jewish community were ordered to stay indoors on the eve of the festival, the first time they had to do so since the Passover in Egypt.

The Prime Minister’s office tweeted a Happy Passover picture saying, “Wishing everyone a very happy Passover from Downing Street. In these difficult times, it may be challenging to celebrate without family and friends, but by staying at home this Passover you’re protecting the NHS, and you’re saving lives. So thank you – and Chag Pesach Sameach!”

UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, who is acting on behalf of the Prime Minister whilst Boris Johnson is in hospital, tweeted, “Gatherings around the Seder table for the Jewish community in the UK and around the world will be very different due to the challenge of coronavirus and these testing times. I’d like to wish all those observing Passover a happy and peaceful Pesach.”

Robert Jenrick, the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities & Local Government, released a video message wishing Jewish families a “happy and a healthy Pesach” and said “this will be a Passover like none of us can remember”. Despite the challenges, he commended the Jewish community saying it “has proven itself to be the most resilient and adaptable of any community”.

Jenrick said he would be celebrating the holiday with his family’s own “Zoom Passover”, using the popular online video software to communicate with his wider family.

The new Labour leader Keir Starmer offered his “warmest wishes” to the Jewish community and spoke of the celebration of freedom the festival represents.

Starmer also addressed the Labour party’s troubles with anti-Semitism, saying, “I know that the failure of the Labour party to deal with anti-Semitism has caused great grief in Jewish communities. I hope as you celebrate Passover this year you will have heard my apology on behalf of the Labour Party, which I repeat again here.”

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