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Vancouver event in support of Al Aqsa
Jul 26, 2017 at 02:18 PM

Salamo alikom wa rahamtullah

Please join us Friday July 28th in a massive gathering for Alaqsa in Downtown Vancouver at Vancouver Art Gallery 7:00 PM

The seizing of al Masjid Alaqsa is painful for every Muslim family and for their friends in the communtiy of humanity in every country in the world. Israeli forces have installed metal detectors, made entrance difficult and then temorarily closed Alaqsa Mosque, preventing Muslims from entering or praying there.  Israeli attacks on worshippers have also shed blood in the courtyard of the holy site.

The West Bank is occupied, Gaza is blockaded and becoming unlivable. Now, in the midst of these attacks on the Muslim Holy Site the UN and the International Community are mute. Most media have little to say of this latest atrocity.Who will stand for human rights? And when?

It is our duty now to stand strong and to condemn aggressive violation of human rights by  the Israeli Government.  We demand the complete restoration of Muslim authority to the holy site and the immediate withdrawal  of Israeli forces from the eastern side of Holy city of Jerusalem.

Please share and invite all your contacts

Thank you
 
Tarek Ramadan

 Al Aqsa Poster

The Future of Al-Aqsa, the Future of Palestine
Jul 24, 2017 at 12:00 AM

In a heroic act of resistance, Palestinian worshippers in Jerusalem refuse to go through metal detectors to enter the Holy Sanctuary and the Al-Aqsa Mosque. Placed by Israel following the killing of two Israeli soldiers who were manning a checkpoint leading to the Sanctuary, the metal detectors are an act of provocation, challenging the Palestinian Muslim authorities who govern the Sanctuary and Palestinian sovereignty in this holy site.

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Controversy Over West Bank Wine Widens to Question Canada-Israel Free Trade Deal Itself
Jul 26, 2017 at 10:10 PM

What started as a simple complaint over appropriate labelling of wines from the West Bank now threatens to open up a wider debate over the Canada Israel Free Trade Agreement itself.

There were probably “high-fives” in the offices of B’nai Brith Canada after Israel appeared to have dodged a bullet a week ago over the issue of West Bank wines. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency had demanded that the Ontario Liquor Control Board stop selling wines produced in the West Bank which were labelled “Product of Israel”. B’nai Brith and others vigorously protested the ruling, arguing that the Canada Israel Free Trade Agreement (CIFTA) allows products from areas Israel controls to be sold as “Product of Israel”. CFIA was embarassed, and quickly reversed its decision.

B’nai Brith eagerly claimed victory, both on its own website and to the media.

But B’nai Brith may be having second thoughts about using the Canada Israel Free Trade Agreement as an argument as it has led others to examine the agreement itself.

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Do 'free trade' agreements trump product origin labelling?
Jul 26, 2017 at 04:27 PM

...Dr. David Kattenburg, a child of Holocaust survivors and complainant in this case, argued, "It's an open and shut case. Just as Canadian consumers wouldn't want to find out that a wine labelled 'Made in France' is produced from grapes grown entirely in Romania, they should know that these wines are not produced from grapes from Israel."

But by July 13, the CFIA reversed its directive citing a provision in the Canada-Israel Free Trade Agreement (signed in 1996 under Liberal prime minister Jean Chretien) whereby Israel is to be considered "the territory where its customs laws are applied," rather than its internationally recognized borders.

As such, this provision in a 'free trade' agreement appears to have trumped Canadian foreign policy and a consumers' right to information on the origin of a good.

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Ontario caves to Israel on falsely-labeled wines– for now, anyway
Jul 16, 2017 at 12:00 AM

Anyone who doubts Israel’s awesome ability to manipulate other countries’ public servants should examine the outcome of a complaint of mine to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) regarding the false labeling of two West Bank settlement wine products on Ontario liquor store shelves.

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Independent Jewish Voices Canada applauds Niki Ashton's support for Palestinian rights
May 19, 2017 at 12:00 AM

Ottawa, ON— After NDP leadership candidate Niki Ashton made a Facebook post expressing solidarity with Palestinian rights, Independent Jewish Voices Canada (IJV) joined with Canadians from across the country in offering their support.  

“IJV is inspired by Ashton’s courageous support for human rights,” says IJV spokesperson Tyler Levitan. “It is rare for a Canadian politician to openly express their solidarity with the Palestinians’ plight.”

“Sadly, B’nai Brith Canada, which provides unconditional support for the far-right Netanyahu government, launched a smear campaign against Ashton for daring to express her solidarity with Palestinians facing human rights abuses,” continued Levitan.

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* Colonialism and the Palestine/Israel conflict *
Mar 26, 2017 at 06:37 PM
The Palestine/Israel conflict is often presented as complex, long-standing (“they have been fighting for thousands of years,”) difficult to understand, and even unsolvable.

 

Yet for Palestinians and many other people, the issue could not be simpler or clearer: In the 1880s, a group of Europeans began to settle in and colonize Palestine, and with the help of the British and later the Americans, they began a long process of dispossessing the local indigenous population. In the 1880s, indigenous Arabs controlled 100% of Palestine. In 2014, Israel, the state set up by the European colonizers, controls 100% of this land.

 

This is not a question of competing religions but of land appropriation.

 

See Maps of Disappearing Palestine which appeared in Vancouver Transit ads:
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Antisemitism and Zionism: Two Sides of Same Coin
Feb 28, 2017 at 03:08 PM

Judaism is a religion that has existed for several thousand years, notes Professor Yakov Rabkin of the University of Montreal. Zionism on the other hand, is a relatively recent political movement which developed in the late 19th century in response to European antisemitism. Zionism depends on antisemitism to survive, he argues. They are two sides of the same coin. Listen to a surprising 7 minute interview. Learn more:

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The strange tale of Canada’s Israeli lobby
Feb 28, 2017 at 05:08 PM

How the campaign against BDS turned into an attack on open democratic debate

In August 2016 the Green Party of Canada concluded its annual convention. Elizabeth May, the party’s leader and sole elected MP, met the media, but not with the usual bland partisan clichés. Instead she complained, “I have to say I’m pretty devastated.” Soon she was even talking about quitting the leadership altogether, walking away from the small but influential young party she had personally infused with an enviably disproportionate national profile....

Bizarrely, May was putting her political future on the line because of the passage of a single resolution on foreign policy, a qualified endorsement of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign that seeks international action to condemn Israel for its treatment of Palestinians in Israel and the Occupied Territories. May did not happen to agree with that resolution, but was this disagreement so extreme as to contemplate resignation? In the end she decided to stay, but only after insisting on a rerun vote on BDS.

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ISM’s response to the Rachel Corrie trial verdict
The International Solidarity Movement (ISM) is deeply concerned by the verdict of Judge Oded Gershon that absolved Israel’s military and state of the 2003 murder of American ISM activist Rachel Corrie. Rachel was crushed to death by an Israeli army bulldozer while protesting the demolition of a Palestinian home in the Gaza Strip.

Despite the American administration stating that the Israeli military investigation had not been "thorough, credible and transparent" and the Israeli government withholding key video and audio evidence, Judge Gershon found no fault in the investigation or in the conclusion that the military and state were not responsible for Rachel’s death. Judge Gershon ruled  that Rachel was to blame for her own murder and classifies her non-violent attempt to prevent war crimes as proof that Rachel was not a “thinking person".

By disregarding international law and granting Israeli war criminals impunity Judge Gershon’s verdict exemplifies the fact that Israel’s legal system cannot be trusted to administer justice according to international standards.The ISM calls on the international community to hold Israel accountable by supporting the Palestinian call for boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) and continuing to join the Palestinian struggle in the occupied Palestinian territories.
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