Israel’s brutal war against Gaza has targeted civilians and civilian infrastructure at an alarming rate. Over 70% of the casualties have been women and children, and Israel has severely damaged all of Gaza’s necessities of life: housing, water, energy, food, and the healthcare system. Not only do Israel’s military actions amount to war crimes, but UN experts warn of a “genocide in the making.” Despite Canada’s vote for a ceasefire at the UN, Canada continues to export weapons to Israel at record-high levels, making the Canadian government complicit in Israel’s violence. (See below for more info).
Given the scale of death and destruction, Canada must not continue to export arms to Israel. Canada must instead use its arms trade as leverage to enforce a ceasefire and bring an immediate end to the violence.
Use the fields below to send an email to, Foreign Affairs Minister Joly, other key federal leaders and your local MP. Insist on a Canadian arms embargo on Israel now!
In the first two months of its war on Gaza, Israel has killed at least 18,000 Palestinians, including 7,729 children and 5,153 women, through the indiscriminate bombing of residential buildings, schools, and hospitals. The scale of Israel’s attacks on civilians is virtually unprecedented, with a ratio of civilian deaths that “is significantly higher than the average civilian toll in all the conflicts around the world during the 20th century.” Israel’s deliberate and murderous attacks on civilians amount to clear war crimes, and UN experts are warning that Israel’s actions point to a “genocide in the making.”
Although Canada has finally called for a ceasefire – a move that was long overdue – it continues to transfer weapons to Israel at record levels. The value of Canada’s arms trade with Israel has been accelerating in the last few years, and in 2022 was at the third-highest level on record. At the same time, Canada imported over $130 million in arms from Israel between 2018-2022, making Canada Israel's 6th largest arms customer. This means that Canada is propping up Israel’s arms industry at the same time as Canadian weapons are possibly being used to kill Palestinians in Gaza and elsewhere throughout the occupied Palestinian territories.
Canada cannot continue military trade with Israel so long as that country is involved in egregious violations international humanitarian law. Canada has a legal responsibility under the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), and its harmonized domestic legislation, to ensure its arms exports are not used in the commission of serious violations of international law, or serious violence against women and children. Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly has the legal authority under Canada’s Export and Import Permits Act, and responsibility under the Arms Trade Treaty, to deny export permits for arms to Israel on human rights grounds.
Canada must use its arms trade as leverage to bring an immediate end to the violence. Help us push the Canadian government to impose a two-way arms embargo on Israel and investigate whether Canadian-made weapons have been directly used to kill Palestinian civilians.
For more information about the Canada-Israel arms trade, read CJPME’s 2022 report, "Arming Apartheid: Canada’s Arms Exports to Israel." For detailed policy recommendations on the actions that Canada should take, see CJPME’s new Position Paper: “Leveraging Canada’s Arms Trade to End the Violence in Gaza.”