B’nai Brith Canada and the Iranian human rights group Justice 88 hosted a virtual ceremony Thursday night to reaffirm solidarity between the Jewish and Iranian communities, and demand stronger action against the Iranian regime by the Trudeau government.
On hand were B’nai Brith Canada CEO Michael Mostyn, Justice 88 Campaign chairman Reza Banai and Shahin Moghaddam, whose wife and 10-year-old son were on the Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 that was shot down by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) earlier this year in retaliation for the U.S. killing of the IRGC leader Qasem Soleimani.
The three urged Canadians to sign a petition calling for stronger action against Iranian regime brutality and its threat to the world.
“We urge you to contact your politicians, let the government of Canada know that we need to do something to keep Canada safe from the Iranian regime,” Mostyn said. “This petition will be circulated from all of our websites (bnaibrith.ca, justice88.com) and we encourage you to sign it and take action.”
The petition’s demands:
• That the federal government “comply with the House of Commons Conservative motion passed in 2018 to designate the entirety of the IRGC as a terrorist organization.”
• The application of Canada’s version of the Magnitsky Act to Iranian officials.” The act sanctions those considered to be human rights offenders, freezes their assets in the country which applies the act and bans them from entering that country.
•For “full transparency, justice and accountability and compensation for the families of the victims of the shooting down of Ukrainian international flight 752.”
Filled with emotion, Moghaddam pointed out that the Iranian regime continues to persecute and threaten the families of the victims.
“Canada refuses to increase political pressure on the Iranian regime…. Do we not have the right to know what happened to our loved ones that morning? Even after nine months, the Canadian government has not filed a complaint against the IRGC and the Islamic republic.”
The featured speakers also affirmed the close Canadian and global ties between the Jewish and Iranian communities, and remembered when Iran had good relations with Israel before the 1979 revolution.
“We need to be coming together as one community, as friends, to stand together in moments of celebration and times of solidarity when we need each other,” Mostyn said.
Banai recalled incidences of warm relations between Iran and Israel in the early 1970s, and said today’s political Islam has a mission, “to destroy the entire civilization of man and force the clock centuries back. They want to achieve this by dividing the people, spreading hate and animosity. Our strategy is to unite people and show how much they can learn and benefit from each other.”
Willowdale Liberal MP Ali Ehsassi, who is of Iranian heritage, endorsed the friendship between Jews and Iranians.
“They are ancient peoples, proud of their traditions and identities, their civilization and their history,” he said.
Thornhill Conservative MP Peter Kent said the two communities “come together in dreams of a real and durable peace across a turbulent region of the world, and in dreams of a day when the human rights-abusing democracy-crushing and terrorist-sponsoring Iranian regime will be held accountable” for the deaths it has caused.
“Canada can do more to demonstrate support for democracy, human rights and the rule of law.”
Moghaddam said, “The Islamic regime has shown it has no obligation to follow international law. Threatening to wipe out Israel is not surprising from a regime that flogs and hangs people in public.”
Roya Hakakian, an Iranian-American writer, poet, and co-founder of the Iran Human Rights Documentation Centre in Connecticut, spoke of how her grandmother challenged the status quo of discrimination against her Jewish father when he was a schoolboy, and succeeded.
“My father wanted us to know that one must always challenge the status quo, resist bigotry and rely on valiant others to come forward and join him in the fight.”
Source » thesuburban