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Panel Discussion: The Palestinian Refugee Crisis PDF Print E-mail
Jan 22, 2021 at 09:00 PM
January 25, 2021
11:00 am to 12:30 pm (EST)
 
The Palestinian refugee situation, which emerged from events surrounding the State of Israel’s birth over seventy years ago, remains one of the largest and most protracted refugee crises of the post-Second World War era. The Global Migration Lab (GML) Student Research Initiative will hold a panel discussion featuring authors Francesca Albanese and Dr. Lex Takkenberg to mark the publication of the second edition of their book, Palestinian Refugees in International Law.
The discussion will address some background of the crisis and the status of the refugees today, the role of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), the nature of Western governments’ involvement, and finally, potential durable solutions to the crisis.
 
This is the link to the event registration: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_WUTjHQmHSIid9jjn2qv_0Q
 
Co-hosted by Global Migration Lab, Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies, and Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy, University of Toronto
Speakers also include Dr. Izzeldin Abuelaish, a medical doctor and U of T faculty member who was born and raised in the Jabalia Refugee Camp, as well as Karen AbuZayd, the former Commissioner-General of UNRWA. Dr. Emily Scott (GML research associate; postdoctoral researcher, McGill University) will serve as moderator.
Dr. Izzeldin Abuelaish is a Palestinian Canadian physician and an internationally recognized human rights and inspirational peace activist. Dr. Abuelaish has been nominated five times for the Nobel Peace Prize, and he is fondly known as Nelson Mandela, Mahatma Gandhi and the “Martin Luther King of the Middle East”. Dr. Abuelaish’ s book, I Shall Not Hate: A Gaza Doctor’s Journey on the Road to Peace and Human Dignity, an autobiography of his loss and transformation, has achieved worldwide critical acclaim. Published in 2010, (currently in 23 different languages). Currently, Dr. Abuelaish lives in Toronto where he is Full Professor at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto
 
Karen AbuZayd served as Commissioner-General for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) from 2005 to 2010 and as Deputy Commissioner-General of UNRWA from 2000 to 2005. Abu Zayd is currently a Commissioner for the United Nations Commission of Inquiry on Syria, mandated by the United Nations Human Rights Council in 2011. Karen AbuZayd also wrote the foreword to the recently published second edition of the book, Palestinian Refugees in International Law.
 
Francesca P. Albanese is a Research Affiliate for the Study of International Migration (ISIM), Georgetown University and Visiting Scholar, at the Issam Fares Institute for Public Studies Policies and International Affairs, American University of Beirut. She is an international lawyer specialized in human rights and refugee issues in the Arab world. She has 15 years of professional experience, working with the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, European Union (electoral assistance), UN Development Programme, and NGOs (protection, human rights). Albanese received her LL.B (Hons.) at Pisa University, and her LL.M (Human Rights) at SOAS University.
 
Dr. Emily Scott is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Centre for International Peace and Security at McGill University. She is Research Associate of the Global Migration Lab at the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs and member of the McGill Refugee Research Group. She studies international relations and comparative politics, with a focus on humanitarianism, conflict and security, health, and migration. Dr. Scott has worked for organizations like CIDA’s Afghanistan Task Force, the UNDP in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, the Carter Center in South Sudan, and Doctors Without Borders.
 
Dr. Lex Takkenberg has worked with UNRWA, the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, from 1989 until late 2019 and is currently a freelance lecturer and consultant. He is the former Chief of the UNRWA Ethics Office. Prior to that, he held positions including UNRWA’s General Counsel, (agency-wide) Director of Operations, and (Deputy) Field Director in Gaza and Syria. Before joining UNRWA, he was the Legal Officer of the Dutch Refugee Council for six years. A law graduate from the University of Amsterdam, he obtained a Doctorate in International Law from the University of Nijmegen, the Netherlands.
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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

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