TEL AVIV – The student council at the University of Western Ontario in Canada last week condemned a “hate speech”-filled flier circulated on campus that blamed last month’s Quebec mosque shooting on “Jewish terrorists.”
“This document is incredibly prejudiced, strongly promotes violence and is simply hate speech,” the student council wrote in a Facebook post.
The flier, which had been distributed on campus by a group calling itself the Canadian National Independence Party (CNIP), falsely claimed that the attack which claimed the lives of six worshipers was carried out by “Jewish terrorists who were trained by Israeli Zionists.”
The document further called for “All Zionists in Canada be tried as terrorists and all members be put in jail.”
The anti-Semitic flier opened with the proclamation, “Here is Canada, here is not Israel.”
It also claimed that Canada was a puppet and colony of Britain.
No information about the Canadian National Independence Party can be found online.
President of the student council Eddy Avila said the flier constituted a blatant attack on the Jewish community, the school’s newspaper the Western Gazette reported. Avila added that it was crucial for the university’s Jewish students to feel safe on campus.
“A lot of the contents of the document were very anti-Semitic and from our perspective one of the things that we always try to ensure that we’re creating in our community is safety and making sure that all students feel welcome,” Avila said.
“This level of safety and this feeling of comfort also adds to stress levels and wellness as a whole,” Avila added. “So when we advocate for holistic wellness, safety is a very important part of that. So I think if we’re doing our job as a University Students’ Council that’s representing all students we want to make sure that all students are able to succeed and thrive in this environment.”
Jewish student group Hillel praised Avila for sending “a very strong statement of solidarity with Jewish students,” the Canadian Jewish News reported.
“We are thankful that the USC [University Student Council] reacted appropriately. As a precaution, Hillel has been in contact with campus police and London police who are looking further into this matter,” Hillel’s CEO Marc Newburgh said.
However, Newburgh said that at other Western-affiliated colleges, the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel operates in full force. King’s College, he said, has been “tense in preparation for a referendum on BDS expected to take place within the next month.”
“While there is a lot of support for Jewish and pro-Israel students at Western, we have seen other campuses where BDS has negatively impacted the campus, which is why we’re working to support the students to defeat BDS at King’s,” he added.