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Sunday, February 28, 2010

Ontario legislature condemns Israel Apartheid Week

TORONTO ( 2/28/2010 -- The legislature in the Canadian province of Ontario has condemned Israeli Apartheid Week.

All 30 members of the 107-seat provincial legislature who were present on Feb. 25 voted for the resolution that denounced the campus event that kicks off March 1 at universities and colleges in 35 cities around the world.

IAW events and speakers are scheduled at several university campuses across Ontario.

The term Israeli Apartheid Week incites "hatred against Israel, a democratic state that respects the rule of law and human rights, and the use of the word 'apartheid' in this context diminishes the suffering of those who were victims of a true apartheid regime in South Africa," Conservative legislator Peter Shurman told Shalom Life, a Toronto-based Jewish Web site.

"If you're going to label Israel as apartheid, then you are also calling Canada apartheid and you are attacking Canadian values," he continued. "The use of the phrase 'Israeli Apartheid Week' is about as close to hate speech as one can get without being arrested, and I'm not certain it doesn't actually cross over that line."

Jewish students across Canada have adopted several campaigns to counter IAW.