Liberal Parliamentarians for Israel Reiterate their Support for a Principled and Non-Partisan Canadian Foreign Policy towards th
OTTAWA – Liberal Parliamentarians for Israel (LPFI) reiterate their support for a principled and non-partisan Canadian foreign policy towards the Arab-Israeli conflict that includes respects for Israel’s right to protect its civilians from attack and the national aspirations of the Palestinian people. This responds to the tabling of a partisan and prejudicial petition by Ms. Libby Davis, NDP Member of Parliament from British Columbia in the House of Commons from two partisan organizations seeking to isolate Israel internationally.
“It is unfortunate that some parliamentarians choose to put forward extremist views that have little to do with realities on the ground and everything to do with partisan efforts to de-legitimize Israel internationally”, said LPFI Co-Chair Anita Neville, Member of Parliament from Manitoba in reaction to the petition. “The conflict in Gaza did bring hardship on the Palestinian people. But the responsibility does not rest with Israel, which sought to stop rocket attacks against its civilians. It rests with Hamas, a terrorist organization banned in Canada which is committed by the Hamas Charter to Israel’s destruction.”
The Middle East conflict is a dispute over land of two peoples with a strong historic and religious connection to the same stretch of land. Palestinians claim that Israel’s conquest of the West Bank, Gaza Strip and the Golan Heights is the biggest obstacle to peace and the real cause for the Middle East conflict. But terrorism by Palestinian groups predates the 1967 Six-Day War and Israel’s presence in these territories, showing that Palestinian unwillingness to accept Israel’s existence and terrorist tactics are the true obstacle to peace in the Middle East.
“Canada’s longstanding foreign policy towards the Middle East conflict is non-partisan and constructive,” said LPFI Co-Chair Senator David Smith, “it is a Liberal foreign policy that the Conservative Government quite correctly adopted as their own. It stresses Israel’s right to live within secure borders and to assure its own security. It condemns terrorism and terrorist groups, such as Hamas. But it also recognizes Palestinian right to self-determination and supports the creation of a sovereign, independent, viable, democratic and territorially contiguous Palestinian state. I would urge my fellow parliamentarians and concerned groups to first acquaint themselves with Canada’s actual foreign policy and with realities on the ground before characterizing either.”
Canada’s foreign policy on key issues in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict can be found on the official site of the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade at www.dfait-maeci.gc.ca/middle_east/can_policy-en.asp.