The Canadian BDS Coalition is pleased to be one of over 50 organizations representing more than 1 million Canadians sent a letter to Justice Minister David Lametti – LaSalle Émard Verdun & Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault today regarding the soon-to-be tabled online hate legislation.
Together, we are calling on the government to take strong measures to combat online hate, but not by incorporating the dangerously flawed IHRA antisemitism definition.
“Let’s tackle online hate, but let’s do so while protecting our Charter-protected freedoms of thought, belief, opinion and expression.
We stand firm in this position and we urge you to do the same by not adopting the IHRA definition of antisemitism into online hate legislation or any accompanying interpretative guidelines and affiliated policies.”
This campaign launched in June 2017, built on a several year long campaign of the Canada Palestine Association. The Coalition campaign was international and also included strong labour support in Canada.
On November 5, 2017, the Canadian BDS Coalition announced that Air Canada had informed them that Air Canada had cancelled its contract with Israel Aerospace Industries midterm.
The Canadian BDS Coalition announced this as a partial victory as Air Canada continued with a small maintenance contract with Israel Aerospace Industries and still sold Sabra products on board. See release here.
Over 10,000 signatures on the campaign when BC Ballet and two other organizations danced under sponsorship of the Government of Canada, and the cities of Vancouver and Montreal, at the Israeli CanaDanse Festival. The campaign initiated by Canada Palestine Association in Vancouver.
Canadian Court ruled that Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions activists were denied free speech and campaigning rights when the city of Montreal tore down their posters highlighting an Israeli atrocity during an election campaign in Canada. This action was brought forward by BDS Quebec a member of the Canadian BDS Coalition.
The Canadian BDS Coalition in October 2019 announced that the #RaptorsDontGo campaign has been successful. Our campaign was launched in June 2019, immediately following the Raptors victory in the NBA championship; and after team co-owner Larry Tanenbaum received extensive coverage in the Israeli media stating he would bring the team to visit Israel if they won the championship. The Israeli Embassy in Ottawa highlighted the issue, and tweeted the Raptors promising “we’ll call you…to help with the arrangements”.
On August 27, the Coalition BDS Québec, a member of the Canadian BDS Coalition, published a press release. Hydro Quebec immediately sent a letter , signed by its chief – Public Affairs and Media, stating that the decision not to renew the HQ-IEC agreement had no political impact, which we doubt strongly.
Read more including about the campaign aross the country.
The inaugural conference call was held in April 2016, with the indication that there was interest in moving towards a shared Basis of Unity in support of the Palestinian civil society call for boycott, divestment and sanctions.
The Canadian BDS Coalition is composed of pro-Palestine solidarity groups across Canada and works independently in support of boycott, divestment and sanctions activities against Israel, within the Canadian context, addressing local challenges and concerns. Read the full Basis of Unity.
Learn more about what to consider when purchasing Medjoul Dates in Canada to ensure they are not from Israeli companies, and to ensure you are purchasing Palestinian product. Steps you can take, and tools to assist you in letting retailers know that you expect them to not carry Israeli Medjoul dates or any Israeli products.
If you know of other Israeli product coming into Canada, or of Palestinian product that is available in Canada, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will up date our information.
Also, if you are aware of any retailers carrying Israeli product please let them that supporting Israeli apartheid and war crimes is not okay, and if you wish you can let us know and we can also follow up.
On February 28, 2021, the Israeli Defense Minister and war criminal Benny Gantz designated the Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network as a “terrorist organization.” This is just the latest in an ongoing delegitimization campaign by the Israeli apartheid regime against Samdioun.
The announcement by apartheid Israel to designate Samidoun a “terrorist” organization came days after 300 international organizations joined in a collective campaign to free Palestinian student prisoners.
Gantz’s baseless accusations are grotesque and intended to defame Samidoun and to suppress their work of drawing attention to the struggle of Palestinian prisoners. It is also meant to intimidate organizations working to uphold the right of Palestinians to resist occupation, apartheid and oppression, and to support the Palestinian refugees’ right of return to their homes and lands under international law.
There are currently 5,000 Palestinians detained by Israeli Occupation Forces without justice in Israeli military prisons, including women, children, university students, community leaders and politicians. The Israeli apartheid regime’s effort to suppress Samidoun is further meant to isolate Palestinian prisoners from their communities and from international support and solidarity.
The Canadian BDS Coalition, composed of twenty-five Canadian solidarity organizations, condemns this attack on Samidoun, the Palestinian prisoners’ movement, and Palestinian and international human right defenders.
Organizations, movements and even individual activists who stand for Palestinian freedom are targeted by the Israeli regime, its lobbyists, and its leading war criminals for harassment, threats and use of state power to suppress the global movement for justice and liberation.
The Canadian BDS Coalition stands with Samidoun and those who face the Israeli apartheid regime’s smear campaigns and repressive attacks against our grassroots organizations. We strengthen our resolve to work together to oppose Israeli apartheid, military occupation, war crimes, human rights abuses, land theft, extrajudicial killing of civilians, politically motivated detentions without trial, the ongoing illegal colonization of Palestine and the persecution of the Palestinian people.
We consider Benny Gantz and his apartheid regime’s libel of Samidoun outrageous and unacceptable,,as we assert that it is Gantz and the Israeli regime who are facing prosecution for war crimes and crimes against humanity — the ultimate in terrorism — in the Hague.
Rooted in institutionalised oppression, displacement, and dispossession of the Palestinian people since the start of the Nakba in 1948, Palestinians continue to experience an ongoing-Nakba – an ongoing reality of Israeli settler-colonialism and apartheid. Since 3 November 2020, Humsa al-Fawqa, a Palestinian community in the Jordan Valley, has been targeted, raided, and demolished six times by the Israeli occupying authorities.
Currently, 11 Palestinian families residing in Khirbet Humsa al-Fawqa, which is located in what Israel has declared a ‘firing zone’ area, are subjected to Israel’s discriminatory urban planning and licensing permit system, which has made obtaining building permits for residential and commercial structures in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, nearly impossible. Notably, Israel has appropriated 18 percent of the West Bank as firing zones, leaving some 6,200 Palestinians living there under threat of forcible displacement.
Containing vital land reserves for the natural expansion of Palestinian towns and cities and constituting a hub of Palestinian natural resources, the Jordan Valley is critical for Israel’s settler-colonial enterprise. Subjected to frequent raids and attacks by the Israeli Occupying Forces (IOF), the Palestinian residents of Khirbet Humsa al-Fawqa and their houses and other structures of Khirbet Humsa al-Fawqa were demolished and confiscated in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2017, 2018, 2020, and now in 2021. In November 2020, the Israeli occupying authorities conducted what was described as “the largest forced displacement incident in over four years,” leaving 72 protected Palestinians, 38 of which are children, homeless, amidst a global pandemic. In February 2021 alone, the Palestinian community was raided five times by the IOF who demolished and confiscated the houses of 11 Palestinian families.
By systematically designing and implementing policies of displacement and dispossession tailored to forcibly transfer Palestinians, replacing them with Israeli settlers, to maintain Israel’s settler-colonial enterprise and apartheid regime, Israel continues to violate Palestinian rights, including the Palestinian inalienable right to self-determination, and right of return; while continuing to enjoy an unlawful culture of impunity.
International community, including the European Union, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, current and former members of the Security Council, Ireland, Belgium, France, and the United Kingdom, has condemned the Israeli-conducted demolitions of Khirbet Humsa al-Fawqa, highlighting the illegality of the such attacks, and addressing the dire humanitarian conditions caused by these demolitions. In acknowledging that the demolished structures have been funded by the international community, as part of their ‘humanitarian support to Palestinians at risk of forcible transfer in the West Bank,’ the undersigned organisations assert that the humanitarian aid should remain a short-term, temporary support, as the international community should not deviate away from its recognition of the root causes of the occupation: Israel’s colonial and apartheid regime, and its associated systematic policies and practices.
Underscoring the need to put an end to Israel’s prevailing culture of impunity, Michael Lynk, the UN Special Rapporteur for the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, and Balakrishnan Rajagopal, UN Special Rapporteur on Adequate Housing as a Component of the Right to an Adequate Standard of Living, and on the Right to Non-Discrimination, welcomed “the support given to the villagers of Humsa Al-Bqai’a by the diplomatic representatives in Palestine and Israel,” but stressed that “much more must be done by their governments to insist upon Israeli accountability, which is the missing key to ending this protracted occupation.”
Israel’s culture of impunity has further allowed business enterprises to benefit from the prolonged Israeli occupation and the perpetration of gross human rights violations. Al-Haq and Stop the Wall have identified c aiding the Israeli occupying authorities in their attacks against Khirbet Humsa al-Fawqa. Notably, JCB has already been placed on the UN Database, amongst 112 Israeli and international companies, operating in illegal Israeli settlements on Palestinian land. Further, JCB is currently being investigated by the United Kingdom National Contact Point for its involvement in human rights violations against Palestinians, but still continues to provide machinery to aid and abet war crimes in the occupied Palestinian territory.
The recent decisions of the Pre Trial Chamber of the International Criminal Court (ICC), affirming that the Court has full territorial jurisdiction over the occupied Palestinian territory i.e. the West Bank, including East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip, and the Office of the Prosecutor of the ICC on the opening of a full criminal investigation into the Situation in Palestine represent a critically important step towards ending impunity and upholding the international rule of law, while ensuring the dignity of the Palestinian people who continue to be denied their right to self-determination and who are subjected to, inter alia, a criminal regime of apartheid, forced displacement, population transfer, extensive destruction and appropriation of property, and pillage, within the jurisdiction of the Court.
The continued targeting of Humsa al-Fawqa represents Israel’s unwillingness to adhere to binding international legal obligations, as Occupying Power, and Third State’s failure to put an end to Israel’s impunity, further undermines the rule of international law.
Accordingly, we reiterate our calls on:
The Human Rights Council of the United Nations to recognise and denounce Israel’s policies against the entire Palestinian people, including the demolitions of Humsa al-Fawqa, as war crimes of an Occupying Power, violation of the Palestinian right to self-determination and constituting the crime of apartheid;
The Human Rights Council to establish an independent Human Rights Council fact-finding mission into Israel’s apartheid regime and associated obligations of states, international organizations and business enterprises;
The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to further develop in a transparent manner the UN database on business enterprises involved in Israel’s illegal settlement enterprise;
The international community to resort to all available mechanisms to achieve international justice and accountability, and in particular, to intervene immediately to economically sanction Israel, and to hold individuals including corporate actors who may have committed war crimes in Humsa al-Fawqa criminally accountable, where they are present in their territory or nationals of the State Party; and
All States parties to the Rome Statute and Third States to publicly support and fully cooperate with the Office of the Prosecutor of the ICC as per the obligations set forth in Article 86 of the Rome Statue, and in line with Common Article 1 of the four Geneva Conventions and Article 146 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, to ensure the arrest and transfer to the Hague of persons investigated and accused of international crimes, and to prevent the continued perpetration of international crimes against the Palestinian people.
Support the call and sign a public petition to #SaveHumsa.
Signatory organisations:Full list of signatories representing amongst others over 550 human rights and social justice organizations, trade unions, faith congregations and indigenous movements:
Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association’s, Palestine
Africa Europa Faith & Justice Network (58 member congregations)
Al Mezan Center for Human Rights, Palestine
Al-Haq, Law in the Service of Mankind, Palestine
A Planeta. Basque Country
APDH Asamblea Permanente por los Derechos Humanos, Argentina
Association Belgo-Palestinienne WB
Association of Norwegian NGOs for Palestine (26 member organizations)
Auckland Peace Action, New Zealand
Australian Palestinian Professionals Association
BACBI – Belgian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel
BDS Berlin, Germany
Breed Platfom Palestina, Netherlands
Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies (CIHRS)
Canadian BDS Coalition (25 member organizations)
Claremont Jewish Voice for Peace, USA
CNCD-11.11.11, Belgium (90 member organizations)
Coalition for Justice and Peace in Palestine, Australia
Cultura Libertà, Italy
Defence for Children International – Palestine
European Coordination of Committees and Associations for Palestine (ECCP) (40 member organizations)
European Legal Support Center (ELSC)
Eyewitness Palestine, USA
Families of the Disappeared, Sri Lanka
Federation of Italian Migrant Workers and their Families – FILEF Sydney, Australia
Finnish-Arab Friendship Society
Future in Our Hands Development Fund, Sri Lanka
Good Shepherd Collective, USA
International Human Rights Council-Hong Kong
Intersindical Alternativa de Catalunya (IAC)
Ireland-Palestine Solidarity Campaign
Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, Finland
Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, UK
Jerusalem Legal Aid and Human Rights Center, Palestine
Jubileo Sur Américas, South America
Jubileu Sul Brasil
Just Peace Advocates/Mouvement Pour Une Paix Juste, Canada
Justiça Ambiental JA! – Friends of the Earth Mozambique
Lakeshore Avenue Baptist Church, USA
Liga Argentina por los Derechos Humanos, Argentina
National Association Assopace Palestina, Italy
NDN Collective, USA
Netherlands Palestine Committee
New Trade Union Initiative, India
Niagara Movement for Justice in Palestine-Israel (NMJPI), USA
NOVACT – International Institute for Nonviolent Action, Spanish State
Oakville Palestinian Rights Association, USA
Observatorio de Derechos Humanos de los Pueblos (30 member organizations)
‘Salaam – Ragazzi Dell”Olivo’, Comitato Di Trieste, Italy
Palestine Solidarity Campaign – South Africa
Palestine Solidarity Campaign (Cape Town), south Africa
Palestine Solidarity Campaign UK
Palestine Solidarity Network Aotearoa/New Zealand
Palestinian and Jewish Unity, Canada
Palestinian Center for Human Rights
Palestinian Grassroots Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign (Stop the Wall)
Palestinian Non Governmental Organizations Network (PNGO) (133 member organizations)
Pax Christi Flanders, Belgium
RACDES, El Salvador
Ramallah Centre for Human Rights Studies, PAlestine
The Canadian BDS Coalition expresses our strongest solidarity with Olivia Zémor, the president of CAPJPO-EuroPalestine in France. Olivia is being sued by TEVA Pharmaceuticals — the largest Israeli corporation by market value, a producer of generic pharmaceuticals — for publishing the call to #BoycottTEVA on the EuroPalestine website due to the company’s complicity in Israeli apartheid, colonization and occupation.
The trial of Olivia Zémor reflects the alliance of Israeli capitalism and the French state in seeking to suppress and silence advocacy for Palestinian rights and liberation.
Visit your French consulate or embassy and make it clear: The boycott of Israel is not only a right, it is a duty. Solidarity with Olivia Zémor — and solidarity with Palestine!
French embassy in Ottawa, and consulates in Halifax, Quebec City, Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver. See details: https://ca.ambafrance.org/
Solidarity from the Canadian BDS Coalition to Olivia Zémor
Despite a resounding judgment by the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), which last June confirmed the legitimacy of a popular boycott of a state for political reasons, and mandated the French state to compensate human rights activists unfairly prosecuted for their organizing for the BDS campaign, the government refuses to stop.
Olivia Zémor has thus been summoned before the court of Lyon on Tuesday, 16 March. And that, for having relayed in 2016, on the europalestine.com site, of which she is the publication director, a call from the Collectif Palestine 69 to boycott the Israeli pharmaceutical firm Teva.
The undersigned organizations reaffirm their full solidarity with the activists facing the repression of a government complicit with the apartheid regime.
From this point of view, they are particularly outraged by the recent circular from the Minister of Justice Eric Dupond-Moretti on the subject. Pretending to ignore the scope of the judgment of the ECHR, Mr. Dupond-Moretti indeed allows himself to enjoin all the prosecutors of France, to maintain the prosecutions against the BDS campaign, and to try to obtain, at the contempt for the law, convictions in these cases.
The Collectif Palestine 69, which brings together in Lyon the entire arc of support for Palestine, is responsible for managing communication locally, and calling for a rally in front of the court, at 1 p.m., just before the trial. Its president will, moreover, testify at the hearing itself.
This is why we are calling for demonstrations to be held everywhere in France, and in particular in Paris…
Solidarity with Olivia Zémor and all the activists of the BDS campaign!
No to the false claims of anti-Semitism against activists!
Down with the complicity of the French government with the Israeli apartheid regime!
Boycott Israel, the racist state!
READ the full list of those who have signed in France & internationally HERE (on the Euro Palestine site).
In Canada, the Canadian BDS Coalition and several of its member groups have signed
Samidoun Just Peace Advocates Palestiniens et Juifs unis (PAJU) Justice for Palestinians (Calgary) Canadian BDS Coalition Oakville Palestinian Rights Association, Canada Niagara Movement for Justice in Palestine-Israel (NMJPI), Canada Solidarity with Palestine-St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada
The Canadian BDS Coalition joins in the BDS Vancouver campaign Boycott TEVA-Apartheid is Bad Medicine.
Boycott TEVA, the Israeli pharmaceutical company that is one of the largest generic drug manufacturers in the world.
The Canadian BDS Coalition has joined with member group the BDS Vancouver campaign to boycott Teva
Order a strip of our “No TEVA” stickers for free by clicking on the Send Message button at the top right of this page and letting us know where to send your Boycott TEVA kit. Or just tell your regular pharmacy to put a permanent “No TEVA” note on your file!
Read more about the Canadian BDS Coalition’s campaign to #BoycottTeva
Please note: Because TEVA is a generic manufacturer, there is almost always another option at the pharmacy. Ask your pharmacist for a generic made by another manufacturer to help spread the word, build solidarity and boycott TEVA!
On Tuesday, 16 March, Olivia Zémor, the present of CAPJPO-EuroPalestine in France, has been summoned to court in Lyon. What is she accused of? Supporting and promoting actions calling for the boycott of Teva, the Israeli pharmaceutical company.
As the Zionist state continues to intensify its brutal policies of racism, colonization, apartheid, mass imprisonment, land confiscation, and siege, we must take action. Developing campaigns to boycott Israel is an important popular response to oppose these crimes.
Supporting Olivia Zémor is supporting the legitimate right to boycott Israel and to fight back against the criminalization and repression of the Palestine solidarity movement in Europe and around the world.
Teva is the largest commercial entity on the Israeli market by operating income and market value. Its profits are built on the colonization of occupied Palestine and funds and sustains the Israeli economy of exploitation.
We stand with Olivia Zémor. We stand with the Palestinian people and their right to resist until return and liberation of Palestine, from the river to the sea.
Read full statement from member of the Canadian BDS Coalition, Samidoun:
Solidary statement by the Palestiniens et Juifs unis (PAJU), a member group of the Coalition
Voici l’exemple de la portée de l’influence du lobby israélien en France, au point que l’espace juridique devient hautement politisée. Olivia Zémora déjà passé en cour pour avoir été aspergée avec un irritant par des militants de la Ligue de défense juive française. Ce n’est pas sans rappeler le cas de Hassan Diab devant la cour française truquée.. Partagez sur vos réseaux et contactez l’ambassade de France (Ottawa) ou le consulat de France de la ville dans laquelle vous vivez afin d’exprimer votre mécontentement face à cette parodie de justice d’inspiration israélienne!
Here is an example of the reach of the Israel Lobby in France, to the degree that the judiciary in France is highly politicized in favour of attacking pro-Palestnian activists. Olivia Zemor has already been in court against the Ligue de défense juive France, having been sprayed in the face with an irritant by members of the JDL. This scandal on the part of the French government is similar to that same goverment’s illicit actions againt Hassan Diab. Please share on your networks and contact the French Embassy (Ottawa) or the French Consulate in the city in which you live in order to express your displeasure with their Israel-inspired tarvesty of justice!
Roger Waters joins 700+ organizations, artists and individuals to urge: Stevie Wonder, say no to Israeli apartheid!
Waters’ appeal came as over 700 organizations, artists and individuals around the world joined the US Campaign for the Academic Boycott of Israel’s appeal to Wonder, urging him to “Say No to this “Prize”, say No to the normalization of Israeli Apartheid, and stand with Justice, Equality and Freedom for all Palestinian people.” Both appeals recalled that Wonder declined to perform at a fundraiser for the “Friends of the IDF” in 2012 as well as his long history in standing against apartheid in South Africa.
The appeal was signed by a diverse group of supporters, including visual artist Samia Halaby, graphic artist and Black Panther veteran Emory Douglas, composer Raymond Deane, artist Freda Guttman and songwriter Dave Lippmann. A wide range of organizations endorsed the call, including the Canadian BDS Coalition, the South Africa BDS Coalition, South African Jews for a Free Palestine, and Boycott from Within, the alliance of Israeli citizens for BDS.
Stevie Wonder Please Say No to Apartheid Israel: An Open Letter
Dear Stevie Wonder:
Along with the undersigned, the Organizing Collective for the US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (USACBI) writes to urge you to hold strong to your opposition to Apartheid by declining Israel’s Wolf Prize.We’d like to begin with our acknowledgement and thanks for your past thoughtful and steadfast support for human rights and dignity throughout the world, and your actions as both a world-class musician and your status as a U.N. “Messenger of Peace.”
By your refusal to perform at a fundraiser for the Friends of the IDF in 2012, you were clear in continuing your opposition to the Apartheid regime in South Africa. At that time, you recognized the impact of something Desmond Tutu did as well—that Israel’s Apartheid regime was worse than South Africa’s.
We’re sure your being given the “Wolf Prize” may seem a great honor, but we ask you to please consider what you’ll be sanctioning if you accept this: the occupation and suppression of the Palestinian people; their infinitely renewable incarceration without charge or trial in Israeli jails; the illegal collective punishment Palestinians suffer on a daily basis throughout Occupied Palestine; the denial of Palestinians’ right to return to their homeland – stolen and colonized in 1948; and ongoing practices of apartheid–including Israel’s refusal to vaccinate the Palestinian population under its military occupation for COVID while administering the vaccine to Jewish citizens.
All this is at the hands of the Apartheid Israeli regime, under whose policies this award is given.
We remain inspired by your actions in 1985, when in honor of your 35th birthday, you spoke and sang so righteously at the UN defending racial equality and denouncing South African apartheid.
We ask you to stand by those same commitments and demand justice and freedom for the Palestinian cause of national liberation.
Say No to this “Prize”, say No to the normalization of Israeli Apartheid, and stand with Justice, Equality and Freedom for all Palestinian people.
US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel
Architects and Planners for Justice in Palestine
Bay Area Women in Black
Belgian Campaign for an Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel
Boycott from Within (Israeli citizens for BDS)
Canadian BDS Coalition
Canada Palestine Association
Cardigan and N Pembs Amnesty International group
Catholics for Justice and Peace in the Holy Land
Central America Solidarity Coalition
Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid Victoria
Collectif Judéo Arabe et Citoyen pour la Palestine
Comitato BDS Campania
Community Services Unlimited Inc.
Ecumenical Peace Institute
Education Equals Making Community Connections
Football Against Apartheid
Free Gaza Movement
Gaza Action Ireland
Haiti Action Committee
Indiana Center for Middle East Peace
Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign (IPSC)
Jewish Voice for a Just Peace in the Middle East (Germany)
Jewish Voice for Peace New Haven
Jewish Voice for Peace, Atlanta Chapter
Jews for Palestinian Right of Return
Just Peace Advocates/Mouvement Pour Une Paix Juste
Just Peace in Palestine/Israel
Justice for Palestinians, Calgary
Labor for Palestine
Niagara Movement for Justice in Palestine-Israel (NMJPI)
Oakville Palestinian Rights Association
Palestine Solidarity Alliance
Palestine Solidarity Network Edmonton
Palestinian and Jewish Unity
Palestinian Canadian Congress
Palestinian Defense Forces
Palestinian Rights Task Force of Nebraskans for Peace
Pax Christi Northern California
Peace Alliance Winnipeg
Racine Coalition for Peace & Justice
Radio Free Maine
Regina Peace Council
Rete Romana di Solidarietà con il Popolo Palestinese
SA BDS Coalition, South Africa
Sacramento Area Peace Action
Sacramento Regional Coalition for Palestinian Rights
Socialist Action/Ligue pour l’Action socialiste
South African Jews for a Free Palestine
Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network
Toronto Solidarity with Palestine
Note: Bold denote the Canadian BDS Coalition & member groups which signed. Italics denotes others the Canadian BDS Coalition reached out to.
Thanks to Roger Waters for joining in this call, and to USACBI for this campaign.
The Canadian BDS Coalition and many of its member groups have joined Samidoun’s campaign to #FreePalestinianStudents. The Coalition is pleased to be among 300+ organizations from around the world who support the campaign. READ MORE.
Join the social media storm to #FreePalestinianStudents – Thursday 11 March
#FreePalestinianStudents Twitter Storm and Social Media Campaign Thursday, 11 March 10 am Pacific – 1 pm Eastern – 7 pm central Europe – 8 pm Palestine Use the hashtag: #FreePalestinianStudents
Join the #FreePalestinianStudents campaign – supported by over 300 organizations around the world – for a social media action and Twitter storm on Thursday, 11 March!
Hundreds of Palestinian students are routinely detained by the Israeli occupation, especially those who are part of student organizations involved with campus political life. At Bir Zeit University alone, approximately 74 students were detained by occupation soldiers during the 2019-2020 academic year. They are among nearly 5,000 Palestinian political prisoners jailed by Israel. The work of student organizing, from holding book fairs to organizing events and participating in student elections, is criminalized by the Israeli occupation. Still more students are detained for joining demonstrations or posting on their social media profiles.
Palestinian students have been seized by Israeli occupation forces and abducted for their participation in the student movement in their homes, at their workplaces and on their campuses.
Palestinian students may be sent to administrative detention — imprisonment without charge or trial, indefinitely renewable in six-month periods. Palestinians routinely spend years jailed with no charges, no trial and no real challenge to the deprivation of their rights. They may be brought before Israeli military courts, which convict over 99% of the Palestinians charged there.
The targeting Palestinian students is an attack on Palestinian futures. It is a systematic attempt to undermine the capacity of young Palestinians to organize with one another for a liberated future for their people: One free of colonization, apartheid and occupation.
On March 11, join us to demand: #FreePalestinianStudents!
70+ organizations from across Canada and around the world, and 130+ individuals including former federal members of parliament Libby Davies & Jim Manly, former UN rapporteur John Dugard, Chris Hedges former NY Times bureau chief, academics, faith community leaders, labour leaders & many others have now signed.
The Canadian Postal Workers Union, the American Friends Service Committee, Al-Haq, the Palestinian Canadian Congress, Independent Jewish Voices, the Canadian Foreign Policy Institute, Boycott from Within, World BEYOND War, and many other labour, faith, civil society, human rights and grassroots organizations join with the Canadian BDS Coalition and its member groups in this all. #CPPDivest
The message to the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board is that Canada’s public pension plan needs to divest from companies identified by the UN as supporting Israeli war crimes.
The UN Database was released on February 12, 2020 in the Report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights(A/HRC/43/71) after the independent international fact-finding mission to investigate the implications of the Israeli settlements on the civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights of the Palestinian people throughout the oPt, including East Jerusalem. There are a total of 112 companies included on the UN list.
Based on CPP’s March 31, 2020 annual listing of equity holding, the CPP shows being invested in eight companies that are listed in the United Nations database.The United Nations (UN) Database of companies complicit with human rights violations.
Given that the aggregate investments are a very small proportion of the foreign traded portfolio, it seems it is an easy move for the CPP Investment Board to divest from companies that have been named as complicit in acts contributing to the maintenance of illegal settlements.
The CPP Canadian investment portfolio
Based on our review of the CPP’s Canadian public equity holding, the portfolio is dominated by one company. It seems unusual that any company would make up over 50 percent of Canadian investments in the CPP.
This company, WSP Global, is a Canadian management and consulting firm that specializes in engineering projects.
This company, according to Who Profits, is involved in the planning of the Israel railway system that crosses into the occupied West Bank and constitutes settlement infrastructure.
The CPP investment in WSP Global is 21,064,000 shares with a market value of $1,683 million as of March 31, 2020. This one investment makes up more than 53.6% of Canadian publicly traded equity holding. See Canadian Publicly-Traded Equity Holdings.
This certainly begs the question as to why the CPP has invested half of the Canadian Publicly Traded equity holding of the CPP in one company; beyond this one that is involved in illegal settlement activities.
In this regard the CPPIB should take immediate steps to:
1.Divest from the UN data base funds, and to do a review to ensure no other investments are included now or into the future from the UN Database
3. Put a transparent public process in place to ensure that these funds do not include any investments from the list going forward
4. Divest from WSP
5. Review the Canadian portfolio for any other companies that are in violation of international law
6. Put in place a transparent process to ensure that companies are vetted for violations of human rights and international law.
The concerns are raised in the broader context of ethical investment related to Canada’s public pension fund investment.
The CPPIB should take all steps necessary to ensure that the activities of all companies included in all of its portfolio are in compliance with international law governing war crimes.
Surely, the CPPIB would not want to have any companies within its portfolio that would be a violation of international law.
The CPPIB is entrusted with fiduciary trust of Canadian’s public pension plan and would be expected to undertake enhanced due diligence to ensure that its investments in conflict affected areas are in line with Canada’s responsibility under international and domestic law.
The Canadian BDS Coalition has joined with its member group Vegans for BDS in the call to PlantX.
In February 2021, Vegans for BDS reached out to PlantX, a Canadian company specializing in the sale of plant-based consumer products, which is undertaking a significant international expansion of big-box retail stores. In March of 2021, they plan to open a massive retail facility in Tel Aviv, Israel. This is funded by the Israeli investment firm, Psagot, whose investments are linked to Israel’s military occupation and settlement-colonization of Palestine (details in the attached statement), and represent numerous violations of international law and human rights.
Vegans for BDS demands that PlantX respect the demands of Palestinian civil society and immediately:
1. Cancel the planned business expansion into Israel