Canadian Jewish Political Affairs Committee
Israel at 60

Mr. Speaker, this week the world pauses to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the founding of Israel. Significantly, this year we also mark the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

At the root of these two milestones lay the horrors of the second world war, the Holocaust, the incalculable human toll of war.

Tragically, 60 years later neither the founding of the state of Israel, nor the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights has meant an end to suffering. The people of Israel have yet to live in security, and peace with their neighbours too often seems a distant dream. The Palestinian people remain without a homeland, deprived of basic human rights, unable to exercise political and religious freedoms and economic security.

On behalf of the NDP, I offer our warm congratulations to Israel and to express our firm commitment to fulfilling the dream of the Universal Declaration to a secure and peaceful Israel and Palestine, where the rights of all are fully respected. Shalom.