Why do Social Democrats do what they do?

June 09, 2010

CUPE/SCFP Ontario Letter to P.M. Stephen Harper Re: Israeli attack on Gaza Freedom Flotilla, June 7, 2010




http://www.cupe.on.ca/aux_file.php?aux_file_id=2894

VIA FAX: (416-325-3745)

The Right Honourable Stephen Harper, M.P.
Prime Minister of Canada
Room 313S Centre Block
House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0A6

Dear Prime Minister Harper

Re: Israeli attack on Gaza Freedom Flotilla

I am writing to you in support of correspondence sent by Paul Moist, National President of the Canadian Union of Public Employees,
and on behalf of the 230,000 members of CUPE in the Province of Ontario.

CUPE Ontario supports the call from our national union for the Canadian Government to join others in the international community,
including the United Nations, in condemning the violent and illegal actions of the Israeli navy, in international waters, in recently
attacking a humanitarian aid convoy. The deaths of those in this incident are part of an unfolding tragedy that Canadians need their
government to speak up against.

There were hundreds of people on board boats from around the world, including Members of Parliament from a number of nations, and
Irish Nobel Peace Prize winner Mairead Maguire. This mission was undertaken out of concern for the living conditions of the people of
Gaza in the interests of peace, solidarity, and humanitarian aid. It is beyond belief that the Israeli navy would act so violently.

We join the call for the Canadian government to demand an immediate and fulsome investigation into this incident and to make public
the rules of engagement issued to the troops who carried out this lethal attack. The world must know the fate of those on board these
vessels and ensure that Israel allow this aid to reach its destination. Canadians want their government to continue its role as a world
leader in working for peace around the world and to demand adherence to international law as a way forward.

CUPE supports a solution to the ongoing conflict that allows Palestinians and Israelis to live in peace. We condemn all acts of violence which make that peace more elusive. We are proud of the work our members do toward global justice and international solidarity. As a
union representing public sector workers, we remain deeply troubled by the reality that without the aid contained on these vessels,
educators cannot teach, health care workers cannot heal, and municipal workers cannot rebuild in Gaza.

Canada is in a position to take leadership in working to end the inhumane treatment of the people of Gaza and we are calling on our
government to take this leadership role seriously, actively, and immediately.

Yours Truly
Fred Hahn

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