Palestinian rights group seeks prosecution of Canadian PM Justin Trudeau for complicity in Gaza war crimes
11/21/2023 // Cassie B. // Views

A Palestinian rights group has announced its intention to seek war crime indictments against Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and three other officials with his administration in the International Criminal Court over their support for Israel and its actions in Gaza.

Trudeau, along with his Foreign Affairs Minister Melanie Joly, Justice Minister Arif Virani, and National Revenue Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau, have been served with notices of intention to seek prosecution against them for aiding and abetting the war crimes being perpetrated in Gaza.

The group behind the legal action is an independent organization of academics, politicians and lawyers known as the International Centre of Justice for Palestinians Legal Working Group for Canadian Accountability (ICJP LWGCA). The group aims to protect Palestinians’ human rights and hold the Israeli military and government, along with their supporters, accountable for intentional law violations.

Although many countries initially supported Israel in defending itself after a surprise attack by Hamas terrorists last month that killed 1,200 Israelis – civilians and military personnel alike – and took more than 200 hostages, Israel is quickly losing what little goodwill it had as the civilian death toll continues to rise in Gaza, where terrorists regularly use civilians as human shields and operate in areas such as hospitals and schools.

So far, more than 11,000 Palestinians have been killed, many of them civilians, while tens of thousands have been injured, according to reports from the Hamas-run Gazan Health Ministry. Moreover, numerous Gazans are internally displaced after being instructed by Israeli authorities to move south for their own protection ahead of their ground invasion.

The ICJP LWGCA has accused Canadian officials of not doing anything about “ethnic cleansing through a campaign of forced displacement of 1.2 million people.”

The group said that despite mounting deaths in Gaza and “clear evidence of war crimes and crimes against humanity, and despite international outrage from the United Nations and human rights experts across the globe, Canada has continued to pledge its steadfast support for Israel.”

It also took issue with Canada’s continuing exporting of arms to Israel, as well as its refusal to stop what it terms the “illegal recruitment of Canadian volunteers to assist Israel’s military.” They also complained that the government is doing nothing to stop millions of dollars from being sent by Canadian charities to benefit the military of the Jewish state.

ICJP LWGCA called on the Canadian government to demand a ceasefire and put an end to financial and material support for Israel.

Trudeau has been reluctant to criticize Israel

Trudeau has said publicly that Israel has a right to defend itself after coming under attack by terrorists. While he has called for civilians to be protected, he has not directly criticized Israel for its military strikes that have destroyed countless residential and public buildings, including schools, hospitals and mosques.

He has, however, been increasingly calling on Israel to minimize the impact of its operations on innocent Gazans recently, imploring the country to stop killing civilians in Gaza and urging its military to “exercise maximum restraint” in the Gaza Strip.

He told the media: “The world is watching, on TV, on social media – we’re hearing the testimonies of doctors, family members, survivors, kids who have lost their parents. The world is witnessing this killing of women, of children, of babies. This has to stop.”

His comments were perceived by some as being too critical of Israel, and hours later, he spoke to Benny Gantz, a former Israeli defense minister who is now in Netanyahu’s wartime cabinet, to reaffirm Canada’s support for Israel and its right to defend its people “in accordance with international law.”

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