A Western University club changes its platform after Harper signals potential hate-crime charges against activists.
A group of students in London are challenging Prime Minister Harper’s potential “zero tolerance policy” to end anti-Semitism.
President of the Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights Club, Randa Albayoumi, suggests that the protected right of freedom of speech is the basic foundation of Canada’s democratic way of life.
Albayoumi says, ” If a non-violent movement looks like a hate-crime then what is there to do…against the genocide, against the occupation, against the siege in Gaza and the West Bank.”
She adds that the changes in next years platform will focus on promoting the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions campaign to the student body.
The BDS campaign attempts to pressure Israeli companies to support Palestine.
The global movement aims to:
- End the Israeli occupation and colonization of Palestine
- Give Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel equal rights
- Respect the right of return of Palestinian refugees
In an email to XFM, executive director of Western Hillel Naiomi Mazer says, ” BDS has failed on every level and it does nothing to advance peace or improve the well-being of Palestinians. Ties between Canadians and Israelis are growing.”
Public Safety Minister, Steven Blaney, referred to boycotts against Israel as hate speech.
Harper later signaled Canada’s intention to use hate crime laws against BDS promoting advocacy groups.