Canada’s lawmakers banned together to condemn and reject the anti-Israel boycott movement for its anti-Semitic, discriminatory and intolerant conduct.
The Canadian Parliament passed a historic motion Monday which formally condemned the anti-Israel BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement.
The Conservatives, including former Prime Minister Stephen Harper who attended the session to cast his vote against BDS, joined the Liberals in overwhelmingly supporting the motion in a vote of 229 for and 51 against, Canada’s CIJ news reported.
The motion, which was brought on November 18 by Conservative MP’s Tony Clement and Michelle Rempel, called on Canada to reject BDS.
The motion states that, “given Canada and Israel share a long history of friendship as well as economic and diplomatic relations, the House reject the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, which promotes the demonization and delegitimization of the State of Israel, and call upon the government to condemn any and all attempts by Canadian organizations, groups or individuals to promote the BDS movement, both here at home and abroad.”
Foreign Affairs Minister Stéphane Dion noted that “the world will win nothing for boycotting Israel but depriving itself of the talents of its inventiveness.”
“We must fight anti-Semitism in all its forms,” he added. “We must oppose the boycott, divest, sanctions campaign in our communities and continue to speak out forcefully against them.”
Michael Levitt, a Liberal MP, said that “BDS is about intolerance. It’s a broader movement to demonize and delegitimize Israel, and to collectively punish all Israelis by holding Israel alone responsible for the Arab-Israeli conflict.”
“Whereas anti-Semites have long targeted Jews throughout the world as the root of all society’s ills, this new form of anti-Semitism targets Israel as the Jew among the nations, singling out the Jewish State as the root of all ills in the world”, he continued.
The BDS movement has gained considerable traction in Canada. BDS is supported by the United Church of Canada as well as a major Quebec-based labor union, Confédération des syndicats nationaux (CSN).
Canada’s third-largest party, the far-left New Democratic Party, condemned the anti-BDS measure, saying it stifles freedom of belief.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has, in the past, stated that “The BDS movement, like Israeli Apartheid Week, has no place on Canadian campuses.”
By: United with Israel Staff and JNS.org