ACTION ALERT: Canada’s Shame: Conservative Government Stands Alone in Votes against Human Rights

January 14th, 2009 - by admin

Canadian Peace Alliance – 2009-01-14 21:36:39

On January 12, 2008 the United Nations Human Rights Council voted to condemn the “massive violations of human rights” by Israel in Gaza. Thirty three countries voted in favour of the resolution and, shamefully, Canada was the only country to vote against.

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To: Prime Minister, Stephen Harper

The Canadian Peace Alliance, Canada’s largest pan-Canadian peace network representing more than 150 organizations, condemns your shameful decision to be the only country to vote against the United Nations Human Rights Council resolution calling for an end to the “massive human rights violations” against the people of Gaza. Further, we demand that the Government of Canada publicly support that resolution and call on Israel to immediately cease the killing of Palestinians and withdraw from the Gaza strip.

After 17 days of fighting in Gaza more than 900 Palestinians, mainly civilians, have been killed by the Israelis and more than 3500 wounded. The Israeli actions have been condemned by international human rights organizations and the United Nations as violating international law and the Geneva conventions.

The systemic destruction of civilian infrastructure and the collective punishment of the people of Gaza is nothing short of a war crime. The Government of Canada, by not supporting this UN resolution, is complicit in those war crimes.

The humanitarian crisis in Gaza gets worse with each day of the aggressive Israeli attacks. The 1.5 million people of Gaza are threatened with a disaster as the necessities of life: water, food and medical supplies run dangerously low. More than 25,000 Gazan civilians have been internally displaced and there is no route for them to escape the carnage.

The people of Canada want their government to ensure the just application of international law yet this decision, once again, shows that the Conservative government supports the wholesale slaughter of innocent people. Thousands of Canadians and hundreds of thousands around the world have demonstrated to end the war in Gaza. We demand you stand with the growing international consensus and call for an end to the war on the people of Gaza a now.

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cc: Lawrence Cannon, Minister of Foreign Affairs
Michael Ignatieff, Liberal Leader
Jack Layton, New Democratic Party Leader
Gilles Duceppe, Bloc Quebecois Leader

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