Friday, February 9, 2024

Government Misleading Canadians on Canada-Israel Arms Trade, Aid to Gaza


Canada complicity Gaza genocide Israel arms trade deception mendacity moral bankruptcy genocide

Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) is calling out the Canadian government for disseminating misleading information about Canada’s arms trade and humanitarian aid. Over the past week, Ministers have made irresponsible comments which obfuscate Canada’s role vis-à-vis the unfolding genocide in Gaza, including the false suggestion that Canada is not exporting weapons to Israel. First, CJPME notes that Canada continues to export military goods to Israel at record-high levels, despite comments otherwise from Minister Joly and others. Second, CJPME points out that Canada’s suspension of funding to the UN agency for Palestine refugees (UNRWA) contradicts Ministers’ statements expressing concern about the humanitarian situation in Gaza.

“Instead of explaining its poor arms trade policy decisions, this government is misleading Canadians into thinking that we aren’t exporting weapons to Israel. And instead of concretely addressing an unfolding genocide, Canadian ministers are cutting aid and claiming that their hands are tied. This is disgraceful,” said Thomas Woodley, President of CJPME. “Canada must end its obfuscating and take immediate action to end its complicity in Israel’s genocide in Gaza,” added Woodley.

CJPME rejects the false claim that Canada is not exporting weapons to Israel. International Development Minister Ahmed Hussen recently claimed “We haven’t exported arms to Israel in 30 years,” and Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly told a committee that “there [have] been no weapons sent under my watch,” while suggesting that Canada is exporting only “non-lethal” military goods. These attempts to downplay Canada’s exports are undermined by the reporting data, which shows that Canada has approved $114M in military goods to Israel since 2015, and has continued to approve military exports since October 7. CJPME points out that these ministers are defining “arms” and lethality in a very narrow and unconventional way — a way which ignores the role of weapons components and other military goods which continue to pose a human rights risk. CJPME has developed a Frequently Asked Questionsresource which explores these issues in more detail. “As Canadians increasingly demand that their government impose an arms embargo on Israel, politicians are trying to pretend that the arms trade doesn’t exist,” said Woodley.  (more...)

Government Misleading Canadians on Canada-Israel Arms Trade, Aid to Gaza

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