Trudeau’s new sympathetic tone on Gaza won’t avert genocide: CJPME

Montreal, November 2, 2023Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) warns that Trudeau’s more “sympathetic” tone toward the death of Palestinian civilians in Gaza will do nothing to avert mass atrocities and Israel’s genocidal violence. On November 1, Prime Minister Trudeau claims to have met with Palestinian families and made three separate comments expressing the idea that the price of justice cannot be the continued suffering of Palestinian civilians. However, CJPME strenuously emphasizes that Trudeau still refuses to join the international community in calling for an immediate stop to Israel’s bombardment, making his words ring hollow. And even if Canada calls for an end to the bombing, it will have done nothing materially – like embargoing arms to Israel – to prevent it from continuing.

“Prime Minister Trudeau’s words of concern for the suffering of Palestinian civilians are the typical performative expressions, lacking real action, that we have come to expect from this Government.  It just feels like an attempt to diffuse popular opposition to their failed policies,” said Thomas Woodley, President of CJPME. “Until Trudeau calls for a ceasefire and bans military trade with Israel, Canada will continue to be complicit in the indiscriminate bombing of Gaza and the slaughter of thousands of Palestinian children,” added Woodley.

Dozens of Members of Parliament, over 150 Canadian civil society organizations, and every single recipient of Canada’s humanitarian aid to Gaza have urged Trudeau to demand an immediate cessation of hostilities. A recent letter to Trudeau from the entire NDP caucus claims to have received emails from over 100,000 Canadians urging a ceasefire. Despite this, Trudeau has continued to call for “humanitarian pauses,” a demand which is deeply inadequate.

Trudeau also says that he spoke with Palestinian families about the importance of “their right to advocate, without fear of reprisal, for Palestinians to live in peace and security.” However, CJPME notes that Trudeau has recently condemned pro-Palestine rallies which he falsely portrayed as pro-Hamas. While in power, his government has opposed all efforts by Palestinians to access justice through non-violent means, whether through the movement to boycott Israel, the United Nations General Assembly, the International Court of Justice, or the International Criminal Court.

“The Prime Minister’s reputation proceeds him. In the face of over 10,000 deaths in this conflict we are exhausted by Trudeau’s empty words of concern,” said Woodley. “Palestinian children are being slaughtered and Israel is trying to expel all Gazans to Egypt. Trudeau needs to take responsibility to protect them and stop ethnic cleansing.”

More than 9,000 Palestinians have been killed in Israel’s indiscriminate bombardment of Gaza since October 7, including 3,760 children. Israel’s “total siege” has restricted access to food, water, electricity, fuel, and medicine in the territory, bringing the healthcare system to the point of collapse. The combination of Israel’s mass killing of civilians, the denial of basic essentials for life, and dehumanizing statements from officials, increasingly raises the alarming prospect of “genocide” according to UN human rights experts, Palestinian NGOs, a former ICC prosecutor, and more than 800 scholars in international law and genocide studies.

About CJPME – Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) is a non-profit and secular organization bringing together men and women of all backgrounds who labour to see justice and peace take root again in the Middle East. Its mission is to empower decision-makers to view all sides with fairness and to promote the equitable and sustainable development of the region.

For more information, please contact: Michael Bueckert, VP CJPME: 613-315-7947 or [email protected].

Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East

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