Montreal, July 6, 2023 — Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) is calling on Canada to implement a series of concrete measures in response to Israel’s devastating and vindictive acts of collective punishment against the Jenin refugee camp earlier this week. Scenes from the camp following Israel’s violent invasion and siege suggest that Israel’s intent was to destroy the civilian public infrastructure of the camp on a colossal scale. CJPME warns that Israel’s withdrawal from the camp therefore does not signify the end of the crisis for residents, as a humanitarian catastrophe remains. CJPME notes that under the Rome Statute, “extensive destruction and appropriation of property, not justified by military necessity and carried out unlawfully and wantonly,” is a grave breach of the Fourth Geneva Convention, and thus amounts to a war crime.Read more
Montreal, July 3, 2023 — Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) is calling for urgent international action to stop Israel’s ongoing assault on the Jenin refugee camp in the occupied West Bank, whose use of airstrikes represents a major escalation of Israeli violence. Since early this morning, Israeli airstrikes, snipers, and ground forces have killed at least 8 Palestinians, including civilians and 2 children, and injured more than 100. CJPME warns that the full scale of the devastation may not come to light until medical teams are finally given full access to the camp.Read more
Montreal, June 28, 2023 — Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) is condemning Liberal Member of Parliament Anthony Housefather for his recent meeting with Simcha Rothman, a far-right member of Israel’s extremist government. Rothman is leading Israel’s “judicial coup” and has defended racial discrimination and recent settler violence against Palestinians. Housefather shared a photograph of himself with Rothman during a meeting yesterday for their joint ‘Task Force’; Rothman describes himself as a co-chair of the group while Housefather is listed as a Steering Committee member. CJPME urges the government and Liberal caucus to repudiate Housefather for working alongside Rothman and to condemn all forms of far-right extremism.Read more
February 25, 1994: Israeli settlers massacre 29 Palestinians in Hebron’s Ibrahimi Mosque
“It was so painful to come back here after what happened and see that they had taken away two-thirds of the mosque. It was an injustice. Instead of offering a hand to those who were killed and injured, the Israelis gave the settlers more space and access to the mosque. It was as if they were rewarding the murderers.” – Hosni Issa al-Rajabeh, Ibrahimi Mosque massacre survivor
On this day in 1994, during dawn prayer in the holy month of Ramadan, a group of armed Israeli settlers entered the Ibrahimi Mosque in occupied Hebron and opened fire on hundreds of Palestinian worshippers, killing 29 people. Among the settlers was Baruch Goldstein, an American-Israeli from the far-right Kach movement, who became a hero to Israel’s far-right. The massacre continued later the same day when Israeli forces shot at attendees of the victims’ funeral, killing 31 more Palestinians, and raising the total death toll to 60.
After the massacre, the Israeli occupation forces converted 60% of the total area of the mosque into a Jewish synagogue protected by metal barriers and military barracks, making it more difficult and complicated for Palestinian Muslims to enter. The Israeli army also closed Shuhada street, which until then had been the economic epicentre of Hebron and a bustling market, thereby shutting down commerce and forcing many Palestinian residents to abandon their homes. The Israeli government imposed a series of security measures which still exist today, including a network of checkpoints, preventing Palestinians from going about their daily affairs and subjecting them to settler and military violence.
Following the attack, the United Nations Security Council adopted resolution 904 (1994) to condemn the massacre. The resolution called upon Israel, the occupying power, to take action to stop settler violence, including by confiscating their weapons, and to “guarantee the safety and protection of the Palestinian civilians throughout the occupied territory.” However, there has never been any justice for the victims, and instead, Palestinian residents of Hebron continue to live with the endless consequences of state-sanctioned settler violence.
Montreal, February 27, 2023 — Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) demands that the Canadian government hold Israeli officials responsible for acts of settler terrorism in the Palestinian town of Huwara and several other villages near Nablus in the occupied West Bank. Over a period of five hours last evening, more than 400 Israeli settlers attacked Huwara, Zaatara, Burin, and Asira al-Qibliya, killing at least 1 Palestinian and wounding at least 390, while torching at least 75 homes (35 of which were destroyed completely) and 100 vehicles. At least 9 families reportedly had to be rescued from their burning homes. Although a public announcement for the pogrom was widely circulated hours in advance, Israeli forces allowed settlers to enter the town freely and did not intervene until hours after the start of the violence; eyewitnesses say that soldiers protected settlers and were a “partner” in the attacks. CJPME argues that action from Canada and the rest of the international community is necessary to protect Palestinians from future atrocities committed by Israeli settler and state forces.Read more
Montreal, February 22, 2023 — Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) demands that the Canadian government condemn Israel’s deadly military invasion of Nablus today in the occupied West Bank, which reportedly killed at least 10 Palestinians and injured more than 100. Today’s attack comes less than one month after a similar attack in Jenin which killed 10 Palestinians, including at least three civilians. CJPME argues that international condemnation and sanctions are necessary to hold Israeli officials accountable for these actions, which may amount to war crimes, and to prevent Israel from committing further aggressive acts.Read more
CJPME: Canada must condemn horrifying Israeli attack on funeral procession for murdered Palestinian journalist
Montreal, May 13, 2022 — Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) is calling on the Canadian government to condemn Israel over today’s attack on the funeral procession for Shireen Abu Akleh, an Al Jazeera journalist who was murdered by Israeli forces this week. During a funeral procession through occupied East Jerusalem today, Israeli forces invaded a hospital ground and attacked worshippers and pallbearers using batons and stun grenades, nearly causing the casket to fall to the ground. CJPME argues that Israel’s willingness to attack funeral mourners further demonstrates the need for an independent and international investigation that can hold Israeli officials accountable.Read more
Montreal, May 11, 2022 — Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) calls for an independent and international investigation into the killing of veteran Al-Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, who was shot in the head today by Israeli snipers while covering an Israeli raid in the Palestinian city of Jenin. Reports from journalists who were with Akleh on the ground said that they were deliberately targeted by Israeli snipers, despite wearing press vests and helmets, and Al Jazeera asserts that Akleh was “assassinated in cold blood.” CJPME urges Canada to refer this case to the International Criminal Court (ICC), and to respond to violence against journalists by suspending all military trade with Israel.Read more
Montreal, May 4, 2022 - Below is a letter from CJPME to Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly challenging Canada's insufficient response to Israeli attacks on the Al-Aqsa mosque during Ramadan. The letter urges Joly to condemn the attacks, noting: "It is not too late to take a principle stand against Israeli attacks, so that these egregious acts are not repeated in the future." Click here to download a PDF of the letter.Read more