“By failing to call out Israel for breaching international law and violating the human rights of the Palestinian people, Canada is contributing to the problem” says NDP leader Jagmeet Singh in a recent statement. As an important ally of the current minority Liberal government, Singh is in a position to force a change. Read more…
In response to appeals from many NDP supporters expressing concern about human rights for Palestinians, NDP leader Jagmeet Singh has sent an email including a strong statement of NDP demands, denouncing the Trudeau government for “failing to call out Israel for breaching international law and for violating the human rights of the Palestinian people”.
Singh’s statement echoes that of many other observers who have indicated that while Canada has what appears to be a fair and balanced policy on paper, in practice our policy has been to support Israel across the board.
In his email, Singh listed 13 practical and principled steps that the NDP urges Canada to take.
New Democrats are asking the Liberal government to:
- respond to reports from Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Israeli human rights NGOs and the United Nations and accept their recommendations to states
- refer the killing of journalist Shireen Abu Akleh to the International Criminal Court
- increase pressure on the Israeli government to stop its plan to annex Palestinian territory in violation of international law
- condemn the construction of illegal settlements, demolitions of Palestinian homes in the West Bank, and evictions from East Jerusalem, including Sheikh Jarrah
- call on Israel to end forcible displacement of villagers in Masafer Yatta
- increase funding to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) which supports Palestinian refugees
- condemn Israel’s undemocratic nation-state law
- condemn the Israeli government’s attacks on civil society in Israel and Palestine, including the recent designation of six Palestinian human rights groups as “terrorist”
- condemn the ongoing blockade of Gaza and increase Canadian humanitarian assistance to the people of Gaza
- condemn military detention of Palestinian children, and reaffirm support for the Convention on the Rights of the Child
- vote for Palestinian human rights at the United Nations
- end all trade and economic cooperation with illegal settlements in Israel-Palestine
- suspend the bilateral trade of all arms and related materials with the State of Israel until Palestinian rights are upheld
A private statement or a public one?
Singh’s excellent statement was sent by email to a number of people, many of whom had written to him, concerned over Israel’s policy toward the Palestinians and urging him to intervene with the Canadian government. A link to the entire statement sent through the mass mailing Mailchimp program can be found here.
It deserves both praise and widespread circulation. But how much does the NDP want to publicize this?
Unfortunately, it seems to have had only limited circulation. While some of the demands have appeared in previous statements issued by NDP foreign affairs critic Heather McPherson, this complete list of demands, signed by the party leader, is nowhere to be found on the NDP webpage. Hopefully the explanation is that the NDP webmaster has not yet had time to include it, and not that the NDP sends different messages to different audiences.
Canada Talks Israel Palestine (CTIP) is the weekly newsletter of Peter Larson, Chair of the Ottawa Forum on Israel/Palestine (OFIP). It aims to promote a serious discussion in Canada about Canada’s response to the complicated and emotional Israel/Palestine issue with a focus on the truth, clear analysis and human rights for all. Readers with different points of view are invited to make comment.
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