Request for the Canadian government to restore funding to the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA)

View this file in .pdf format We, the undersigned, wish to request that the Canadian government restore funding to the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) for Palestinian refugees.  In your mandate letter as Minister of International Development, the Prime Minister has called you to focus “Canada’s development assistance on helping the poorest and most vulnerable, and supporting fragile states.”  We believe that Palestinian refugees in the Middle East are among the world’s most vulnerable populations, and sorely need the aid that Canada has historically provided.  (View full document below)

“Fund UNRWA!” says Cross-section of Canadian Groups

Montreal, May 12, 2016  — Today, a diverse cross-section of dozens of Canadian groups enjoined the Canadian government to reinstate funding for the UN aid agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA.)  In a letter addressed to the Minister of International Development, Marie-Claude Bibeau, the organizations asked the Canadian government to contribute at least $35 million annually to UNRWA’s core programmes, and to be ready to respond to future UNRWA emergency appeals in times of crisis.  The groups signing the letter represent Canadians of all backgrounds – including unions and other broad-based community groups – and reflect the broad Canadian support for UNRWA funding. Continue reading

Saudi Ambassador declines to defend Kingdom’s Human Rights Record

Montreal, May 10, 2016  — The Saudi Arabian ambassador to Canada has declined to respond to a letter asking him to explain his country’s position on the $15 billion arms deal for light armoured vehicles (LAVs) with Canada.  Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) sent a letter to the Saudi Ambassador last week, and followed up repeatedly, but failed to elicit a response from the Saudi representative to Canada.  CJPME had invited the ambassador to address concerns by Canadian human rights organizations that the LAVs could likely be used to commit human rights abuses. Continue reading

York U. President’s Efforts Applauded by Community Groups

Montreal, May 3, 2016  — Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) joined with other important community organizations signing an open letter applauding the success of York University President Mamdouh Shoukri at creating an inclusive and respectful environment for York students.  The organizations addressed the letter to York U. President Shoukri, and thanked him for the meaningful and effective ways he had dealt with various controversies at York U.       Continue reading

Canadian human rights organizations oppose Saudi Arms Deal

Montreal, April 27, 2016  — Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) joined with over a dozen prominent Canadian human rights groups signing an open letter opposing the recent issuance of export permits for Canada’s $15 billion arms deal with Saudi Arabia.  The list of Canadian organizations signing the open letter is impressive, and includes Amnesty International Canada, the Canadian Council for International Cooperation, the Rideau Institute and others.  The organizations addressed the letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, and demanded that the government rescind the export permits for the arms deal, many of which have been recently signed.     Continue reading

CJPME hosts Ayman Odeh, Palestinian-Israeli Political Leader

Montreal, April 6, 2016  — Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) is thrilled to announce it will be hosting Ayman Odeh for a speaking event in Montreal on April 12 at 7:00 p.m.  Mr. Odeh is a lawyer and member of the Israeli Knesset (i.e. the Israeli Parliament.)  As leader of the “Joint List,” a party with 13 MKs, he is also an important political leader of Palestinians in Israel. His talk will focus on the Palestinian leadership in Israel, the struggles that Palestinians in Israel face, and how this community is fighting politically for its rights within Israel. Continue reading

Trudeau gov’t unable to follow through on anti-BDS motion?

Montreal, March 31, 2016  — It has been over five weeks since the majority Liberal government of Justin Trudeau committed itself to condemning all Canadian groups and individuals who promote the boycott of Israel (i.e. BDS)[i] in Canada.  Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) points out that, despite the lip service that Liberal leaders gave in support of the motion at the time, government leaders have not yet condemned a single Canadian group or individual for BDS.  CJPME leaders conclude that this is either because: 1) the Liberal government is not convinced of the merits of the motion, or 2) the Liberal government is concerned that the motion contradictsCanada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Continue reading

BDS group targeted with threats, hate after Parliamentary motion

Montreal, March 10, 2016  — Following the passage of Parliament’s “anti-BDS” motion on Feb. 22, and its own BDS initiatives, Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) and its adherents have been much more the target of threats and hate speech in social media.  While the instigators of the hate speech were banned from the social media fora soon after they make their comments, the comments at times nonetheless constitute threats and hate speech.  “One has to wonder whether the parliamentary anti-BDS motion made it ‘open season’ on human rights activists,” mused Thomas Woodley, President of CJPME.   Continue reading

CJPME President waits to be Condemned by Trudeau Government

Montreal, February 23, 2016  — In light of the passage of Parliament’s “anti-BDS” motion on Monday, the President of Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME), Mr. Thomas Woodley, announced that he awaits his condemnation by the Trudeau Liberals.   “I’ve realized that being condemned by Canada’s government, merely for supporting the human rights of Palestinians, might be the most admirable thing I’ll accomplish in my life,” wrote Woodley in a letter to the government, as he awaited news of his condemnation.  As leader of a non-profit actively promoting BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel) as an economic tool to encourage Israel to respect the human rights of Palestinians, Woodley assumes he is near the top of the list for condemnation.   Continue reading

CJPME launches creative new “boycott Israel” campaign; defies Spineless Parliamentarians

Montreal, February 19, 2015  — In light of ridiculous theatre in Canada’s parliament this week, Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) openly launches a creative new campaign to deepen the “Boycott Israel” movement in Canada.  CJPME was specifically cited in the parliamentary motion targeting organizations supporting economic action against Israel, and CJPME has launched its new campaign in response.  CJPME’s campaign invites Canadians from across the country to sign up for a packet of free “Boycott Israel” sticky notes.  CJPME invites Canadians to go to local stores and post these on Israeli merchandise, thus warning potential buyers against buying products from Israel.   Continue reading