Canadian PM blames UN setback on pro-Israel stand
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper said Monday his government's strong support of Israel probably cost Canada a seat on the United Nations Security Council in an election last month that saw Canada defeated by Germany and Portugal.
Harper told a conference on combating anti-Semitism that Jews throughout the world are facing increasing victimization, Xinhua reported.
He said Jews in Canada are also facing rising levels of discrimination and violence.
"Anti-Semitism has gained a place at our universities, where at times it is not the mob who are removed, but the Jewish students under attack," Harper said.
"And, under the shadow of a hateful ideology with global ambitions, one which targets the Jewish homeland as a scapegoat, Jews are savagely attacked around the world -- such as, most appallingly, in Mumbai in 2008," he added.
Harper said Jews today in many parts of the world and many different settings are "increasingly subjected to vandalism, threats, slurs, and just plain, old-fashioned lies."
Harper said the Canadian government has taken strong steps to fight anti-Semitism, but hatred of Jews is "an evolving, global phenomenon."
Harper said anti-Semites have allied with people with "anti-American and anti-Western ideologies."
They have, he said, targeted "the Jewish people by targeting the Jewish homeland, Israel, as the source of injustice and conflict in the world, and uses, perversely, the language of human rights to do so."
While, he said, Israel may be subjected to fair criticism, but he opposes those who argue for the destruction of the Jewish state.
"When Israel, the only country in the world whose very existence is under attack, is consistently and conspicuously singled out for condemnation, I believe we are morally obligated to take a stand. Demonization, Double standards, De-legitimization -- the 3 D's -- it is a responsibility, to stand up to them," Harper said.
The Ottawa conference, held under tight security in the Canadian parliament building, was organized by the Canadian Parliamentary Coalition for Combating Anti-Semitism.