Canadian Jewish Political Affairs Committee
Anita Neville calls on the Government of Canada to organize an international conference in Winnipeg to combat racism

Anita Neville made a Statement in the House of Commons earlier today where she proposed that Canada consider hosting a conference in 2009 to combat racism and discrimination, which would parallel the flawed Durban Review Conference.

The Canadian conference would facilitate global dialogue and action on the human rights agenda. It would also offer countries with an alternative forum to the politicized framework of the Durban Review Conference in which to advance this important issue.

The Member of Parliament from Winnipeg South Centre suggested Winnipeg as a promising location for such a conference, with the new Human Rights Museum acting as a fitting backdrop for the historic initiative.

“I look forward to the Government’s response to my proposal and stand ready to play my part in the successful orchestration of this historic undertaking,” she concluded. 

For further information contact Brian Kaufmann, Office of Anita Neville: 613.992.9475

BACKGROUND

  • The 2001 World Conference Against Racism, commonly known as the Durban Conference, was turned into a session of Israel-bashing, causing Canada’s officials in Durban to state “Canada is still here today only because we wanted to have our voice decry the attempts at this Conference to de-legitimize the State of Israel and to dishonour the history and suffering of the Jewish people.”

 

  • In April, 2007 the federal government designated the Canadian Museum for Human Rights as a national cultural institution, building on the Liberal government $100 million investment in capital funding.

 

  • On Jan. 23rd, the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade stated: “… the 2001 World Conference against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance in Durban, South Africa… degenerated into open and divisive expressions of intolerance and anti-Semitism that undermined the principles of the United Nations and the very goals the conference sought to achieve. … [Canada] had hoped that the preparatory process for the 2009 Durban Review Conference would remedy the mistakes of the past. We have concluded that, despite our efforts, it will not. Canada will therefore not participate in the 2009 conference.”