ATT: Professor Meric Gertler, President, University of Toronto
Morgan Russell, Executive Assistant to the President
David Curtin, Director, Communications Services
Dr. Nadina Jamison, Assistant Vice-President, Strategic Initiatives
Bryn MacPherson, Assistant Vice-President, Office of the President & Chief of Protocol
David Estok, Vice-President, Communications
Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center is urging the University of Toronto to condemn the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement following the Graduate Students’ Union recent vote in favour of the ratification of the BDS Committee as a standing committee.
The work of the BDS Committee includes supporting and promoting the antisemitic BDS movement against Israel, including through Israeli Apartheid Week – which brings biased anti-Israel propaganda and stokes division among students on campus every year.
The BDS movement targets and bullies the one and only Jewish nation on earth, while leaving out any criticism of the most oppressive nations on the planet – most of which are undemocratic and practice gender apartheid, restrict freedoms and commit heinous acts of violence – including Syria, Iran and Saudi Arabia.
According to the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance working definition of antisemitism, “claiming that the existence of Israel is a racist endeavor” and “applying double standards by requiring of (Israel) a behaviour not expected or demanded of any other democratic nation” is antisemitic.
Countries around the world have established that the BDS movement is antisemitic – including here in Canada where Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has defended condemnation of the movement, stating it delegitimizes and demonizes Israel and that Israeli Apartheid Week makes students on campus “fearful of actually attending campus events because of their religion.”
The Ontario and Canadian governments passed anti-BDS motions in 2016, formally condemning the movement.
It’s shameful that Canadian university students are using western platforms to discriminate against the Jewish people and the only democratic state in the Middle East – Israel. Therefore, the University of Toronto is being urged to formally condemn antisemitism and BDS, as well as disallow student groups from promoting this discriminatory movement on campus.
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