CJPME condemns human rights atrocities committed by ISIS

Montreal, August 25, 2014 — Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) condemns human rights atrocities being committed by ISIS (“Islamic State of Iraq and Sham”), an armed extremist group, in northern Iraq. According to UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay, and other human rights groups, ISIS has been ruthlessly carrying out widespread ethnic and religious cleansing in the areas under its control. Its violations include targeted killings, forced conversions, abductions, trafficking, slavery, sexual abuse, destruction of religious and cultural sites, and the besieging of entire communities because of ethnic, religious or sectarian affiliation. Among those directly targeted are Christians, Yezidis, Shabaks, Turkomen, Kaka’e and Sabaeans. Continue reading

CJPME responds to common arguments used to justify Israel’s continued assault on Gaza

Montreal, July 25, 2014  — Yesterday, Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) issued a document (http://cjpme.nationbuilder.com/israels_arguments) called How to respond to Israel’s pet arguments. CJPME hopes to help concerned Canadians better understand the context of the Israeli assault on Gaza and respond to common arguments used by proponents of Israel to prolong the assault. CJPME hopes that individuals in the public sphere will consider the information provided and regard such arguments more critically in the future. Continue reading

CJPME: Politicians betray Canadian values in Israel-Gaza

Montreal, July 24, 2014 — Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) believes that the leaders of Canada’s major political parties have betrayed Canadian values in their response to the violence between Israel and Gaza. “The statements by political leaders of recent weeks demonstrate no nuance of understanding of the broader situation between Israel, Gaza and the Palestinians,” asserts CJPME President Thomas Woodley. “In its own way, each political party has declared unquestioning support for Israel, and unexamined condemnation of the Palestinians. This is not principled, nor does it respect the precepts of international law in the broader context.” Continue reading

CJPME urges mutually agreed-upon ceasefire, halt to Israeli invasion of Gaza

Montreal, July 18, 2014 — Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) strongly condemns the land invasion of Gaza by Israel troops, initiated yesterday, and urges both Hamas and Israel to accept a ceasefire. CJPME notes that the bogus “ceasefire” earlier this week was announced by Egypt and Israel without consultation with Hamas. As such, it was invalid and non-binding. Not surprisingly, hostilities resumed within hours. Continue reading

CJPME backs ceasefire call, as death toll hits 172, 77% civilians

Montreal, July 14, 2014 - Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) supports the UN call for a ceasefire, and shares its concerns about the high civilian casualties among Palestinians. According to international reports, 172 Palestinians have been killed by the Israeli military. The UN estimates that 77 percent of the victims were civilians. Meanwhile, no Israelis have been killed. Continue reading

CJPME: Canada must press Israel to end assault on Gaza

Montreal, July 8, 2014 - Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CPME) calls on MPs of all stripes to press Israel to end its disproportionate assault on Gaza. “Rocket-fire from Gaza is seldom lethal, and thus no justification for repeated air strikes, let alone the ground invasion that Israel is reportedly preparing,” says CJPME President Thomas Woodley. CJPME reminds MPs that the number of Palestinian non-combatants killed by the Israeli military over the last 10 years far outstrips the number of Israeli civilians killed by Palestinians in the same period: 2041 versus 186. Thus, attempts by the Israeli government to portray itself as a victim with no choice but to raze Gaza, as it did in 2009, are patently groundless. Continue reading

Mohamed Fahmy’s conviction a result of Canadian indifference

Montreal, June 23, 2014 — Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME)—a grassroots citizens’ group— believes the Canadian government’s indifference directly contributed to today’s conviction and sentencing of Canadian journalist Mohamed Fahmy. An Egyptian court convicted Fahmy and two other Aljazeera journalists on charges of aiding terrorism and falsifying news. Fahmy and Australian journalist Peter Greste were sentenced to seven years in prison, and Egyptian producer Baher Mohamed to ten years. Amnesty International observers of the trial commented that the prosecution failed to produce a single shred of solid evidence for either charge. As noted by Amnesty International, Fahmy and the other Al Jazeera crew members were simply doing their jobs as a news crew. Continue reading

CJPME urges Canada to stop dithering and let Syrian refugees in

Montreal, June 20, 2014 - Following suggestions in Canadian media that Canada is reneging on its promise to resettle Syrian refugees, Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) urges the government to step up. CJPME—a grassroots citizens’ group—strongly urges the government to open its doors to some of the 2.4 million Syrians displaced by the internal armed conflict, now in its third year. “The government must stop dithering.  Continue reading

CJPME: Ottawa “Invisible” exhibition should stay up

Montreal, June 18, 2014 — Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) joins other pro-human rights organizations across Canada in support of the continued showing of the “Invisible” exhibition at Ottawa city hall. Invisible calls attention – through art – to the thousands of Palestinians who have died premature and obscure deaths under Israeli military occupation. In the Palestinian-Canadian artist’s own words, Invisible is “a protest in honour of remembrance” of her people and homeland. Continue reading

Michael Ondaatje & 15 other renowned artists endorse BDS

Montreal, June 17, 2014 — Three of Canada’s top writers are among the 16 internationally renowned artists who, after a recent visit to the West Bank, have issued a strongly worded statement. The declaration expresses the “utmost sadness and dismay” over Israel’s recent announcement of yet another 1500 illegal settlement units in the West Bank. The artists note that this move is particularly unfortunate at a moment when the Palestinians have formed a unity government.  Continue reading