Tag Archives: boycott

Organizations Across Canada and Around the World Call on Air Canada to Say NO to Its Complicity in Israeli War Crimes



The Canadian BDS Coalition has just released this important open letter to Air Canada regarding its partnering with Israel Aerospace Industries. Civil society groups in Canada and around the world have signed on to say “Halt this Complicity with Israeli War Crimes”! #AirCanadaComplicity

(le français suit)

Oct. 16, 2017

Mr. Calin Rovinescu
President and CEO
Air Canada
P.O. Box 14000, Station Airport
Dorval, QC H4Y 1H4
FAX: 514-422-4945

Dear Mr. Rovinescu:

We wish to bring to your attention our concerns about Air Canada’s partnership with Israel Aerospace Industries for maintenance on the Air Canada fleet of Boeing 787 and 767 jets.

Israel Aerospace Industries [IAI] is the subject of boycotts across Europe for its deadly drone technology and production.  Corporate Watch from the UK says “IAI was one of the earliest developers of drone technology and launched its first surveillance drone in 1979.  IAI’s website boasts that its drones have an “unsurpassed track record of over 1,200,000 operational flight hours for over 50 users on five continents.”

A 2014 study entitled ‘Sleepless in Gaza by Dr. Atef Abu Saif details the terrifying impact of drone attacks on the Gaza Strip, especially on children, “Since their first use in 2000, drones have led to the death of hundreds of Palestinians and have injured thousands more. In addition, they have directly impacted Palestinian psychological and social life, as well as causing a grossly negative impact on education.

By partnering with IAI, Air Canada becomes complicit in the war crimes of IAI. This is fundamentally wrong.

In having the maintenance of the Boeing 787 and 767 jets performed in Israel, you send valuable Canadian jobs out of the provinces of Quebec, Ontario, and Manitoba. Again, this is fundamentally wrong.

In addition to partnering with Israel Aerospace Industries, Air Canada also sells Sabra Hummus and guacamole as part of the onboard canteen service. Sabra is a partner with the Strauss Group. Strauss is the second largest Israeli food and beverage company and is known for supporting two Israeli military units implicated in human rights abuses, the Golani and Givati brigades.

We join with the Canadian groups that have already called on you to immediately halt this complicity with Israeli war crimes against the Palestinian civilian population.


Des organisations partout au Canada et partout dans le monde demandent à Air Canada de dire NON à la complicité dans les crimes de guerre israéliens

 Lettre ouverte au PDG d’Air Canada

Le 16 octobre 2017

Calin Rovinescu
Président et PDG
Air Canada
C.P.  14000, succursale Aéroport
Dorval, QC  H4Y 1H4

Cher Monsieur Rovinescu,

Nous souhaitons porter à votre attention nos préoccupations au sujet du partenariat d’Air Canada avec Israel Aerospace Industries pour la maintenance de la flotte de Boeing 787 et 767 d’Air Canada.

Israel Aerospace Industries [IAI] fait l’objet d’un boycott à travers l’Europe pour sa technologie et sa production de drones mortels. IAI a été l’un des premiers développeurs de drones et a lancé son premier drone de surveillance en 1979. Le site web d’IAI affirme que ses drones ont un « record inégalé de plus de 1 200 000 heures de vol opérationnel pour plus de 50 utilisateurs sur cinq continents. »

Une étude de 2014 intitulée « Sleepless in Gaza » par le Dr Atef Abu Saif détaille l’impact terrifiant des attaques de drones sur la bande de Gaza, en particulier sur les enfants : « Depuis leur première utilisation en 2000, les drones ont causé la mort de centaines de Palestiniens et en ont blessé des milliers d’autres. En outre, ils ont eu un impact direct sur la vie psychologique et sociale des Palestiniens et ont eu un impact négatif sur l’éducation. »

En s’associant avec IAI, Air Canada devient complice des crimes de guerre de l’IAI. C’est un tort avéré.

En faisant effectuer l’entretien des Boeing 787 et 767 en Israël, vous envoyez des emplois canadiens précieux en provenance des provinces du Québec, de l’Ontario et du Manitoba. Encore une fois, il s’agit d’un tort avéré.

En plus de s’associer à Israel Aerospace Industries, Air Canada vend également du guacamole et du hummus Sabra dans le cadre du service de cantine à bord. Sabra est un partenaire du groupe Strauss. Strauss est la deuxième plus grande compagnie israélienne d’aliments et de boissons et est connue pour son soutien à deux unités militaires israéliennes impliquées dans des violations des droits de l’homme, les brigades Golani et Givati.

Nous nous joignons aux groupes canadiens qui vous ont déjà demandé d’arrêter immédiatement cette complicité avec les crimes de guerre israéliens contre la population civile palestinienne.

Signed by:

  • Canadian Union of Postal Workers
  • CUPE 3902 (Canadian Union of Public Employees), Toronto
  • Fredericton & District Labour Council
  • New Brunswick Federation of Labour/Fédération des Travailleurs et Travailleuses du Nouveau-Brunswick
  • Newfoundland and Labrador Federation of Labour
  • Nova Scotia Federation of Labour
  • UNIFOR Local 4504, University of New Brunswick
  • Barnard-Boecker Centre Foundation, Victoria
  • Bathurst United Church of Canada, Toronto
  • BDS Vancouver-Coast Salish
  • Canada Palestine Association, Vancouver
  • Canadian Peace Congress
  • Centre d’appui aux Philippines / Centre for Philippine Concerns (CAP-CPC)
  • Christian Peacemaker Teams-Ontario
  • Coalition against Israeli Apartheid CAIA, Victoria
  • Coalition BDS Québec
  • Independent Jewish Voices Canada/Voix Juives Indépendantes Canada
  • International League of Peoples’ Struggle (ILPS) in Canada
  • Justice for Palestinians Calgary
  • Mid-Islanders for Justice and Peace in the Middle East, Vancouver Island
  • NDP Socialist Caucus
  • Niagara BDS
  • Palestine Solidarity Network – Edmonton
  • Palestine Solidarity St. John’s
  • Palestinian and Jewish Unity, PAJU, Montreal
  • Palestinian Solidarity Working Group, Sudbury
  • Peace Alliance Winnipeg
  • People for Peace, London, Ontario.
  • Socialist Action.
  • Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights, UBC
  • Toronto Action for Social Change
  • Toronto BDS
  • United Network for a Just Peace in Palestine & Israel (UNJPPI) – Toronto chapter

And also signed by the following groups from other countries:

  • Association of Norwegian NGOs for Palestine
  • Australian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Campaign for Palestine
  • Australians for Palestine
  • BACBI (Belgian Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel)
  • BDS Berlin
  • BDS France
  • Coalition for Justice and Peace in Palestine CJPP, Sydney
  • Ireland-Palestine Solidarity Campaign
  • Palestine Support Network Australia
  • Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network
  • U.S. Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (USACBI)
Air Canada

Tell Air Canada to end its complicity with Israel

Did you know that Air Canada is outsourcing maintenance work for its B787 and B767 jets to Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI)? And that IAI, a leader in drone production, is wholly owned by the government of Israel? And that Gaza and its civilian population are mercilessly used as a human laboratory for developing and thereby advancing the marketing of such drones?

IAI brags on its website that its “scope has expanded to include technologically sophisticated solutions for battle in the air, at sea or on land” and that it has “contributed significantly” to the “strategic superiority” of the Israeli military.

You can read more about IAI in this Corporate Watch report.

The Canadian BDS coalition is launching a major campaign to tell Air Canada we are not on board with this blatant complicity with Israeli war crimes against the Palestinian people. The Palestinian-led BDS movement recently called for immediate international action towards implementing a comprehensive military embargo on Israel, similar to that imposed against apartheid South Africa in the past.

What you can do

Telling Air Canada to immediately end this contract with IAI is one thing you can do right now to contribute. Here’s how you can help:

Add your name to the new petition to Air Canada!

Please make your union, church, and community or political groups aware of this boycott and encourage them to show solidarity with the Palestinian people as well as workers here in Canada. You can download a fact sheet on the issue from Canada Palestine Association website.

Check all other possible options before finalizing your travel plans and boycott Air Canada whenever possible. Send the message to Air Canada that Israeli government abuses of international law will not be rewarded with your travel dollars!

Join a local BDS group and stay tuned for other campaigns to help further the military embargo on Israel.

Learn more

Read the most recent Palestine Chronicle article (or this earlier article from March, 2017).

Read the 2015 Mondoweiss article on the call for a boycott of Air Canada.

For more background on the issue, visit the Canada Palestine Association website.

Tell the TSO: Don’t play for Israeli apartheid

The Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) will make its first-ever touring appearances in Israel, with performances in Jerusalem on May 11, 2017 and Tel Aviv on May 13, 2017.

The tour, coming just days before the 69th anniversary of the Palestinian Nakba and less than a month before the 50th anniversary of the Israeli occupation of the West Bank, Gaza, and East Jerusalem, ignores the Palestinian-led call for a cultural boycott of Israel, which has been supported by thousands of artists around the world to refuse to play in Israel.

Take Action

Here’s how you can take action to tell the TSO not to play for Israeli apartheid:

1. Sign and share the petition calling on TSO musicians to cancel their shows in Israel.

2. Contact the leadership of the TSO and demand they cancel the planned performances in Israel. If you’re not sure what to say, you can use key points from the petition to get started. Here are come key contacts:

Gary Hanson, Interim Chief Executive Officer

Roberta Smith, Vice-President & Chief of Staff

Peter Oundjian, Music Director

You can also contact the TSO by email at contactus@tso.ca or by phone at 416.598.3375 and see a full contact list for other TSO administrative staff to contact.

3. If you are a TSO member, subscriber, donor, or volunteer, withhold your support until the TSO agrees to respect the Palestinian boycott call and cancels its concerts in Israel. Be sure to tell the TSO why you’re withdrawing you support.

4. Engage with the TSO on social media by posting a comment on their facebook page or tweet at them at @TorontoSymphony.

5. Write a letter to the editor of the Toronto Star (lettertoed@thestar.ca) and other Toronto media outlining your concerns with the TSO’s decision to perform in Israel.


Open letter to the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO)

The Canadian BDS Coalition has the following open letter signed by over 20 Canadian organizations to the directors of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) asking them to reconsider the TSO’s participation in two upcoming concerts in Israel.

You can take action to call on the TSO to respect the Palestinian call for cultural boycott by cancelling its planned shows in Israel.

April 29, 2017

Dear Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) Directors, Conductors and Musicians,

We write to you today to ask that you reflect on the following appeal from Palestinian artists, and reconsider your participation in the TSO’s planned “Arabian Nights” tour of Israel.

Palestinian writers, artists and cultural centers are calling on international artists not to perform in Israel until it ceases its grave violations of human rights and international law. They seek freedom from occupation, equality for the Palestinian citizens of Israel, and justice for the refugees.

In the occupied territories, 6,300 Palestinians – including 300 minors, 500 administrative detainees (held without charge) and 13 members of parliament – are imprisoned. Last year, Israeli forces killed more than 100 Palestinians, including 33 children. Over half a million Israelis live in illegal settlements. More than 6 million Palestinian refugees are denied their rights. This state of affairs is not only unjust; it is unsustainable.

Israel instrumentalizes culture to cover up its violations. When international artists perform at Israeli cultural venues and institutions, they help to create the false impression that Israel is a “normal” country like any other. This visit by the world-renowned TSO will be paraded as an endorsement of Israel’s actions. Continue reading

Congratulations to students at King’s University College and UBC

The Canadian BDS Coalition congratulates the King’s BDS Network at the University of Western Ontario and the Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights (SPHR) at the University of British Columbia.

At King’s University College at University of Western Ontario, 76% of the students who cast a vote in a recent referendum supported their student council in lobbying the King’s administration to boycott and divest from companies complicit in human rights violations against Palestinians.

Implementation will be based by King’s University College Student Council (KUSC) on a resolution that brought results from this referendum along with another referendum on fossil fuel divestment to their March 19, 2017 Annual General Meeting.

The approved resolution mandates the student council to lobby King’s administration to boycott and divest from any and all companies and products complicit with Israeli occupation based on principles of human rights, labour, environment, and anti-corruption. It also calls on KUCSC to research and write an annual Advocacy Paper on ethical investments and divestments that will include a five-year plan for ethical investing.

On March 30, 2017, the SPHR at University of British Columbia had a ground-breaking victory when a British Columbia Supreme Court judge brought down his ruling and dismissed a case to stop a boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) referendum. Continue reading