2023 / 11 / 9
Since October 7, 2023, we have been following the development of the bloody events in the Gaza Strip and the retaliatory response carried out by Israel which has led to a humanitarian catastrophe that increases hour by hour.
We are concerned about the unprecedented scale of violations of fundamental principles of international humanitarian law and human rights law, and the grave risks faced by civilians. We are especially concerned since the Israeli attacks are destroying cities and villages in what can justifiably be considered a deliberate act of genocide against humanity. They are also targeting civilian homes, schools and hospitals, the most recent of which was the Baptist Hospital in Gaza which has led to the death of at least 500 civilians so far.
Israeli forces are also using internationally banned weapons and both Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have verified the use of white phosphorus to target civilians.
Israeli forces have ordered civilians in northern Gaza and Gaza City to “evacuate” to the south — an order that is not enforceable “without devastating humanitarian consequences,” the UN has said — and may amount to mass forcible transfer which is prohibited under international law. While international humanitarian law imposes an absolute prohibition on attacking civilians, the Israeli army deliberately struck fleeing civilians in safe passages instead of taking all possible precautions to minimize harm to civilians and civilian infrastructure throughout Gaza.
Israel has also imposed a comprehensive blockade on the Gaza Strip cutting off water, electricity, food, and medicine. It is a mass murder being carried out by Israeli leaders with Defense Minister Yoav Galant describing the residents of Gaza as human animals.
The comprehensive destruction continues daily, burning everything, targeting women, children, and the elderly in an unprecedented manner. The humanitarian crisis is worsening with the increase in brutal Israeli military attacks, in violation of international law.
Israel, as an occupying state, refuses to abide by international law and imposes unprecedented inhumane measures against more than two and a half million people in Gaza, war crimes that should not be supported´-or-tolerated.
We are witnessing a new campaign of displacement of the residents of Gaza whose parents were previously displaced from other Palestinian areas in 1948 and 1967, Consequently the Palestinian human tragedy continues, without any solution in sight.
And for some inexplicable reason - as Amnesty International says - Canada has not yet condemned the indiscriminate air strikes launched by Israel on the Gaza Strip, the complete blockade imposed on it, and the forced displacement of more than a million civilians.
We call on you to condemn Israeli military operations against civilians. It is shameful for the international community to remain silent in the face of Israeli war crimes at a time when we talk about respecting human rights and the rights of peoples
Our people all over the world know full well that the support of some world governments for Israel in this unprecedented manner is nothing less than political hypocrisy. You must not allow a new holocaust to occur against the Palestinians.
We also call on you to take immediate action-;- to urge Israel to:
- Stop all military actions in the Gaza Strip
- End the comprehensive siege measures imposed on Gaza for 16 years.
- Cancel the evacuation order, and commit to protecting civilians and returning them to their homes.
- Call on all parties to negotiate in order to commit to protecting civilians and ensuring unimpeded access to humanitarian aid.
We look forward to Canada being an influential country in building peace in the Middle East, in accordance with United Nations resolutions and the principles of the peace process based on Israel’s withdrawal from the territories occupied in 1967 and the two-state solution.
We do not support Hamas but we do stand in unwavering solidarity with the Palestinian people in their struggle for freedom and independence
We call on you to make every diplomatic effort to protect civilians and protect rights and freedoms, which is one of Canada s most important tasks across the world.
You have a historic opportunity to support the rights and freedoms of peoples, and for Canada to take a step forward in stopping violations of international law committed by Israel and not remain silent about its crimes. Silence under these circumstances is a shameful act and a form of complicity in crime.
The banner of rights and freedoms and of standing by what is right must remain the banner of Canada throughout the world.
Furthermore, failure to condemn Israel s crimes in Gaza will encourage hate speech in Canada, restrict freedom of expression and freedom of opinion, and spread fear and anxiety.
Do not remain silent. Silence is approval of crimes and may be incitement to Israel to continue violating international law. Do not remain silent lest you become a partner in the genocide against the Palestinians´-or-in their displacement again. Remember that the Palestinians are the First Nation of the land of Canaan.
Canadian-Syrian Writer and journalist