Prime Minister David Cameron said:
"I am delighted to wish the Jewish community in the UK and across the world a happy and peaceful Chanucah.
"Chanucah is a magical eight day festival that children look forward to throughout the year – a joyous time of candles, doughnuts and gifts.
"Of course, Chanucah commemorates the victory of the Maccabees and the restoration of the Temple in Jerusalem. It also celebrates the miracle of the oil – when one day’s worth of oil burned for a full eight days. The central message of this story is surely that it is possible to bring light and hope to all those who live in a world of darkness and despair.
"But Chanucah contains deeper messages that still resonate with Jewish communities and with us all today. The root of the Hebrew word for Chanucah is “chinuch”, meaning education – an important theme at the heart of the Jewish religion. I pay tribute to the incredible contribution the Jewish community plays throughout our society, and specifically in the education system. This dedication to education has provided enormous benefits for us all.
“So, as an extra candle is lit each night of Chanucah, my hope is that the warmth and brightness that lights up each home will inspire us all to strive for a compassionate and tolerant society.