Tag Archives: Gaza Strip

Canadian Political Parties on Israel, Hamas, and the Gaza Strip

I’ve tried to find the official statements by the main Canadian parties on each of their websites. For the Conservatives, I’ve linked to articles that include Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird’s public statements.

Conservative Party of Canada

CBC News, July 17:

On Sunday, Prime Minister Stephen Harper accused Hamas of using civilians as human shields to defend against the Israeli bombardment.

Harper called on allies of Israel to show their support, saying that “failure by the international community to condemn these reprehensible actions would encourage these terrorists to continue their appalling actions.”

CBC News, July 15:

Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird has condemned a decision by Hamas to reject an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire with Israel.

Baird said the situation should not be characterized as a battle between Israel and the Palestinian Authority or the Palestinian people, but rather between Hamas, which Canada sees as a terrorist organization, and the Jewish state.

“The buck stops with Hamas,” Baird told reporters in Ottawa. “Hamas started this bloodshed. Hamas can end it.

“The scourge of terrorism must be rejected by all peace-loving peoples around the world,” he said…

Baird added that credit should go to President Mahmoud Abbas, head of the Palestinian Authority, and noted that no rockets had come from areas under Abbas’s control.

And he repeated Canada’s support for Israel.

“We believe Israel has the right to defend itself by itself.”

NDP

NDP Foreign Affairs Critic Paul Dewar, July 14:

New Democrats are very concerned by the escalation of tensions in Gaza and Israel. We call on the Canadian government to support a ceasefire and urge all parties to exercise restraint and avoid actions that could further destabilize the situation.

On behalf of Canada’s Official Opposition, we have written to Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird and called for Canada to work in support of restraint, de-escalation and civilian protection within a framework of international humanitarian law. To date, neither his comments nor the Prime Minister’s statements get us closer to these important goals.

Since the start of the most recent tensions, we have spoken with Israeli and Palestinian representatives in Ottawa. We have reiterated that Hamas’ continued rocket attacks are unacceptable. We have also voiced our deep concern regarding the escalating violence and reports of civilian deaths.

We will continue to monitor the situation closely and maintain our diplomatic engagement with Israeli and Palestinian officials. The Canadian government must work diplomatically, together with our allies, to help de-escalate the situation, work towards an immediate ceasefire and support a negotiated settlement to the conflict.

Liberal Party of Canada

Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada, Justin Trudeau, July 15:

The Liberal Party of Canada strongly condemns Hamas’ rejection of the Egyptian ceasefire proposal and its rocket attacks on civilians.

Israel should be commended for having accepted the ceasefire proposal, and demonstrating its commitment to peace. The Liberal Party of Canada, and many in the international community including the United States, the U.N. Security Council, and the Palestinian Authority, had urged a ceasefire that could have ended the tragic civilian loss of life in Gaza and the suffering of Israelis under terrorist attack.

Israel has the right to defend itself and its people. Hamas is a terrorist organization and must cease its rocket attacks immediately.

Green Party of Canada

Leader of the Green Party of Canada, Elizabeth May, July 11:

We need to immediately put a stop to this terrible cycle of violence which is killing innocent Israeli and Palestinian children…

What history has repeatedly shown us is that the only way to end this violence and come to a long-term, peaceful and equitable solution is through meaningful dialogue… Revenge is never a substitute or a solution to ending violence.  I call on both Israeli and Palestinian leaders to step back and immediately end any further escalation of military action before we witness the inevitable and horrific loss of many more lives.

EDIT (07/18/2014):

As reported by the Huffington Post today, the Conservative Party has released “a dramatic new ad that highlights the party’s staunch support for Israel.” Although apparently first marked as “unlisted,” both PM Harper and Baird have tweeted a link to the video, and it has been shared on the Conservative Party’s Twitter and Facebook accounts. The article and video can be found here.

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