header image
Home arrow Palestinian Elections arrow Hamilton Declaration
Hamilton Declaration PDF Print E-mail
Oct 28, 2007 at 12:00 AM

Please find below the text of the "Hamilton Declaration", which was passed by 18 Palestinian Canadian community-based associations, including Toronto, Mississauga, Ottawa, Halifax, Vancouver, London Ontario, Hamilton, Branford, Montreal, A-lawda, Resistance Art

Please feel free to circulate it as widely as you wish

October 28, 2007

An Open Letter to Mahmoud Abbas - President of the Palestinian National Authority

We the Palestinian Canadian community assembly at the Palestinian National Voice Preparatory Conference in Hamilton, Canada, issue this letter out of profound concern regarding the present state of the Palestinian national struggle and the November 2007 “peace” conference to be hosted by the United States in Annapolis, Maryland.

While Palestinians still suffer from the disaster of the Oslo Accords, the Palestinian National Authority has now agreed to attend another round of flawed negotiations. This time it does so under the pressure of North American and European nations that have actively collaborated with Israel to divide the Palestinian people and inflict collective punishment and other war crimes against them. Even now Israel is being allowed to deny the Palestinians the basic necessities for a functioning society through a humiliating siege against the Palestinian people in response to the exercise of Palestinian democracy and the adherence to its results.

It is our belief that the purpose of the Annapolis round of negotiations is to extract further critical concessions from the Palestinians while further delaying final status agreements. In particular, we believe that Israel will attempt to redefine the conflict with the Palestinians as being only about ending the occupation of Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza, or parts thereof. Such a redefinition leads the Palestinians into the trap of the “two-state” formula which subverts our legitimate rights under international law. We stress that the central issue in the Palestinian conflict with Israel has always been the dispossession of the Palestinian people from their land and property caused by the Zionist ethnic cleansing of 1948 and the Israeli denial to Palestinians of the basic human right to return and to live in peace and security as equal citizens on their land.

We further specifically caution you against any recognition of Israel as a “Jewish” state. Such a recognition would give Israel the façade of moral and legal legitimacy while critically compromising the full implementation of the inalienable Palestinian right of return. In addition, it would contradict the struggle by Palestinian citizens of Israel to maintain their identity and gain equal rights as citizens. We point out that Israel was established through United Nations General Assembly Resolution 181 (Partition Resolution) which does not envisage or consent to the establishment of states on a religious or ethnic basis. In addition, we underscore that Israel was admitted as a member of the United Nations on the basis of its having recognized the full right of return of the Palestinian people on the basis of United Nations General Assembly Resolution 194 (Right of Return Resolution).

Today it is more apparent than ever that the only basis on which peace can be brought to the historic land of Palestine is through the establishment of a unified secular democratic state in which all citizens are equal and share the same rights and responsibilities regardless of a citizen’s religion.

Palestinians can only be properly represented through a delegation representing the united Palestinian people. Accordingly, it is essential that the internal dispute between Ramallah and Gaza be resolved before Palestinians participate in any negotiations with the Israelis. In addition, the ultimate decision on what Palestinians can accept can only be determined by a fully elected and democratically effective Palestinian National Council (PNC) representing all of the world’s 10 million Palestinians. Palestinians who are denied the right to participate in elections to the PNC cannot be regarded as having consented to any agreement made in their name. The re-activation of the PNC as a fully elected and democratically effective body would also have the effect of re-energizing the Palestine Liberation Organization as a legitimate instrument of the Palestinian people.

We stress that any attempt to establish peace and security in the land of Palestine can only be successful if it is firmly based on natural justice and the principles of international law. We reconfirm that the right of the Palestinian people to return to their homes and property and to receive full compensation for all damage done to their property as well as for all other losses associated with the violation of their rights by Zionist forces is both an inalienable individual and collective right. Any Palestinian leadership that suggests that the inalienable Palestinian right of return can be negotiated away abrogates any legitimacy it may have had to speak in the name of the Palestinian people.

Palestine House
3195 Erindale station Rd
Mississauga, Ont
L5C 1Y5
www.palestinehouse.com

Next>
Alliance of Concerned Jewish Canadians slams Canadian Jewish Congress exclusion

PRESS  RELEASE          For immediate Release            2007-07-03
 
The Alliance of Concerned Jewish Canadians responded today, to the decision by the Canadian Jewish Congress to deny membership to the progressive Jewish group. The CJC issued a letter which gave no reason for its decision.

“The decision by the Canadian Jewish Congress to exclude the Alliance of Concerned Jewish Canadians illustrates the sectarian orientation of the forces controlling that organization,” declared ACJC Administrative Secretary Abraham Weizfeld. “The rejection of our application to become a member of the Canadian Jewish Congress and the refusal seat our delegates at the CJC Plenary on June 17th amounts to a refusal to acknowledge growing Jewish opposition to the Israeli occupation and siege of the Palestinian territories.”

“CJC’s refusal to include all tendencies in the Jewish community should be seen as a futile attempt to marginalize growing Jewish opposition to Israel’s behaviour and to the exclusive character of the Israel State,” Weizfeld continued.

 He contended that this refusal also motivated the decision by the June 17 plenary of the Canadian Jewish Congress to annul the process of conducting elections to the Board of Directors. As a result of this decision, the Board will now have 25% of its seats reserved for the Canadian Council for Israel and Jewish Advocacy which controls the CJC funding agency, the United Jewish Appeal. Weizfeld explained that these organizations provide unquestioning support to Israel, regardless of what it does.

The resulting vote on a resolution to amend the CJC constitution with regard to election of officers may not have passed if the Alliance of Concerned Jewish Canadians’ delegates had been included.

“We do not share in the uncritical support for Israel,” Weizfeld stated. “It is our position that the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, which began in 1967, must end immediately. This is the view that the ACJC wanted to bring to the Canadian Jewish Congress and that the CJC leadership was determined to ignore.” The refusal to hear our independent voice is proof that the CJC is not a body representative of diverse currents in Canada's Jewish population.

“It is essential that Israel and the Palestinians – including the duly elected Prime Minister Haniyeh – begin negotiations to conclude a lasting peace without prior conditions from either side. Only this approach can put an end to this ongoing tragedy for both the Palestinian and Israeli communities,” he concluded.

Alliance of Concerned Jewish Canadians
Alliance de Canadien/nes juif/ves concerné/es
68, av. Duluth est
Montréal QC H2W 1G8 Canada
(514) 284-6642

ACJC2006@yahoo.ca
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ACJC2006

Who's Online
We have 17 guests online