Palestinian and Jewish Unity (PAJU) Press Release
To: Canadian MPs Anthony Housefather, Marco Mendocino, Melissa Lantsman, Michelle Rempel-Garner, Marty Morantz
Cc: Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Leaders of the Liberal Party of Canada, the Conservative Party of Canada, the New Democratic Party of Canada, the Bloc Québécois Party and the Green Party of Canada respectively: Justin Trudeau, Pierre Poilievre, Jagmeet Singh, Yves-François Blanchet and Elizabeth May.
For immediate publication
Montréal, le 27 novembre 2023
The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs has provided an overview of the casualties suffered by the civilian population of Gaza as of November 20 2023. 11, 078 Palestinians have been killed. (Today, November 25, 2023, the number of Gazans killed has been updated to more than14, 000). Of these, more than 3,000 are women and some 5, 000 of the fatalities have been children. Some 6, 5000 other people including 4, 400 children are reported missing and may be trapped under the rubble left by what amounts to Israeli carpet bombing. Israel has bombed hospitals, schools, mosques, churches and residential buildings.
Israel has destroyed entire neighborhoods in Gaza. 1,340 Palestinian families in Gaza have suffered multiple fatalities. At least 6,120 of the reported 11,078 fatalities have come from 825 families. Some families have been entirely killed by Israel’s constant bombardment. 27, 400 Gazans have been injured. There is a lack of food, water and sanitary facilities, an acute shortage of blood products, drugs and supplies and fuel needed for hospitals is running out. Hospitals in Gaza are at the point of collapse. 25 hospitals and 55 health care centres are out of service. At least 3 churches and 83 mosques have been targeted by Israeli attacks.
Israel’s genocidal attack has killed 102 UNRWA (United Nations Relief Work Agency) staff. At least, 201 health workers have been killed along with 22 civil defence workers and 60 journalists. In fact, journalists are being deliberately targeted by Israel – and not for the first time. There is no doubt whatsoever that Israel has committed multiple war crimes in Gaza. A group of United Nations experts have said that there is “evidence of increasing genocidal incitement” against the Palestinian people in what it said were “grave violations” committed by Israel. The group of UN experts, who include several special UN rapporteurs, stated, “We are also profoundly concerned about the support of certain governments for Israel’s strategy of warfare against the besieged population of Gaza, and the failure of the international system to mobilise to prevent genocide.”
The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) has issued a legal brief arguing that there is a serious risk of genocide in Gaza and that, as a consequence, all states have a legal duty to take measures to prevent genocide. That includes Canada. Of course, the State of Israel takes no heed of this as it has flaunted international law for 75 years with the complicity of the so-called Western ‘democracies.’ It continues bombing even as a four-day ‘humanitarian’ pause is enacted. Netanyahu has announced that Israel will nevertheless resume the bombardment subsequent to the pause, laying bare Israel’s plan to ethnically cleanse all of Gaza.
There have been numerous calls to genocide within Israel from government officials and even media personalities for the physical elimination of Gaza’s entire population. Netanyahu used the reference to the Biblical Amalek people in the Book of Samuel to clearly incite genocide against the Palestinians of Gaza. Here is what he said:
“You must remember what Amalek has done to you, says our Holy Bible. 1 Samuel 15:3 ‘Now go and smite Amalek and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both mman and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.”
There is no doubting Netanyahu’s incitement to genocide against the population of Gaza. He is a criminal who must be indicted for enacting genocide and war crimes against the civilian population of Gaza. Recently, ret. Major General Giora Eiland, former head of the National Security Council and current advisor to the Defense Minister Yoav Gallant (who referred to the Palestnians as ‘human animals’) decided to spell out genocide more explicitly.
In a Hebrew article on the printed edition of the centrist Yedioth Ahronoth titled “Let’s not be intimidated by the world,” Eiland clarified that the whole Gazan civilian population was a legitimate target and that even “severe epidemics in the south of the Gaza Strip will bring victory closer.” His words leave no doubt as to his view on inciting genocide:
“They are not only Hamas fighters with weapons, but also all the ‘civilian’ officials, including hospital administrators and school administrators, and also the entire Gaza population that enthusiastically supported Hamas and cheered on its atrocities on October 7th.”
Yet in the face of this obvious genocide, Western political elites and the Western press in general, have turned a blind eye to the reality, use the bugbear of ‘antisemitism’ to deflect opinion away from the reality of the genocide in Gaza. These are the same Western nations who systematically barred Jews from entering their respective countries during the period of the Jewish Holocaust. Their concern is not for Jews but rather to provide cover for one other member of the imperial genocide club, this being the State of Israel.
Five Members of the Parliament of Canada – Anthony Housefather, Marco Mendocino (Liberal Party of Canada), Melissa Lantsman, Marty Morantz and Michelle Rempel-Garner (Conservative Party of Canada) have traveled to Israel to lend their moral support to Israel’s efforts in Gaza. In so doing, they may be guilty of aiding and abetting what is being referred to by legal experts as a possible genocide in Gaza.
The Rome Statute (International Criminal Court) provides clear criteria in Articles 6, 7 and 8 as to the definition of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity respectively. It is clear that Israel has transgressed all three and will continue to do so as long as those public officials and institutions continue to support Israel’s impunity. This is exactly what the five above-mentioned Canadian MPs will have done by traveling to Israel to publicly support its brutal and inhuman campaign. Hence, the five MPs must be investigated by the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court.
It will be up to the ICC to determine if the five aforementioned MPs–having publicly stated their support for Israel despite the evident war crimes of which it is guilty- are themselves guilty of aiding and abetting those war crimes by their presence and show of solidarity with the government of Israel. Canada is a signatory to the Rome Statute and is therefore bound by all of its articles. If the five aforementioned MPs are found guilty of aiding and abetting Israel’s war crimes, an arrest warrant must subsequently be issued by the ICC for them and a demand for their extradition to the ICC at The Hague, Netherlands be issued to the Minister of Justice of Canada.
Be it noted that there is no statute of limitations on acts of genocide, war crimes or crimes against humanity, neither for those who perpetrate such acts or those who aid and abet those acts. PAJU will continue to scrutinize all statements made by elected officials concerning the carnage in Gaza and will take the appropriate legal steps to see to it that the rule-of-law is stringently respected. It should be noted that, in Canada, a consortium of lawyers have announced their intention to prosecute legal claims against Canadian government officials complicit with Israeli war crimes and have served four Canadian government ministers with legal papers, including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Let all elected officials who represent the federal, provincial and municipal governments and their adjoining institutions govern themselves accordingly.
PAJU considers that, given the severity of the possible charges which may be levied against the five aforementioned Members of Parliament and others who may have contravened international law regarding the question of support for the Israeli attacks on Gazan civilians and infrastructure, we advise the leaders of the political parties sitting in Canada’s House of Commons – copied on this letter of intent – to share this press release with all Members of Canada’s Parliament. We shall consider it their responsibility to do so.
Be advised that a copy of this press release is hereby issued to the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court. Be advised as well that this press statement on the part of PAJU is being sent as well in blind copy (Bcc) to members of the legal consortium mentioned above, as well as journalists, Palestinian solidarity groups and other organizations.
Photo from PAJU Montreal post from Yahoo.