Tell Canadian Officials that Advocacy for Palestine is not ‘Terrorism’
Send your letter to Canadian Minister of Public Safety Bill Blair. Tell him political advocacy for Palestinian prisoners is defending basic human rights.
Over 30 Canadian and international groups have endorsed the call to reject moves by the Israeli government and its lobby in Canada to criminalize Palestinian advocacy. Let the Canadian Minister of Public Safety, Bill Blair, know that you support Palestinian Canadians in defending their democratic rights to free expression and association.
On Feb. 28, 2021, Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network was added to Israel’s “terror list” by its Defense Minister Benny Gantz. One of Canada’s leading pro-Israel lobby groups, the Centre for Israel and Jewish Advocacy, immediately followed suit and repeated its call for the Canadian government to also label Samidoun as a “terrorist entity”. In response, 33 groups including the BC Civil Liberties Association, Canadian Union of Postal Workers, Independent Jewish Voices Canada, Palestinian Youth Movement, Canadian BDS Coalition, U.S. Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel and the International Association of Democratic Lawyers IADL, signed on to the statement Political Advocacy and National Liberation are not “Terrorism”.
The statement noted:
“There are no concrete charges against Samidoun, simply that it helps Palestinian prisoners and is involved in “anti-Israel propaganda efforts”. Samidoun operates as a public and transparent prisoner advocacy group; it is independent and has no organizational connection or affiliation with any Palestinian party.
On February 3, 2021, the Centre for Israel and Jewish Advocacy CIJA called for Samidoun to be placed on Canada’s terror list. This was included in their statement responding to the announcement by Bill Blair, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, that Canada was adding 13 groups to Canada’s list of Terrorist Entities. Then, on February 28, 2021, the same day Israel stated they were designating Samidoun as “terrorist”, CIJA tweeted to Bill Blair saying that Canada should now follow Israel’s lead and do the same…
This criminalization of Palestinian advocacy is unacceptable and unfounded; Palestinian-Canadians and their supporters have no intention of allowing biased officials to suppress their democratic rights and their voices. We will continue to work for justice and equality for Palestinians, be it through prisoner support or boycott campaigns; we will not allow our guaranteed rights to free expression and association to be threatened or curtailed.”
Just Peace Advocates joins with
in sponsoring this letter.