In Canadian Politics, Human Rights, International, Middle East

Today, a justice of the Quebec Superior Court rejected an application by two pro-Israel students of McGill University for an injunction barring pro-Palestinian groups from protesting peacefully on the university’s campus.

The decision came down as Montreal police weighed a McGill request to remove a temporary encampment recently established on McGill’s campus. Palestinian solidarity activists established the encampment to pressure McGill to divest from corporations that are complicit in Israel’s ongoing genocide in occupied Palestine.

The student encampment at McGill is one of dozens that have sprung up at universities across North America in recent days. In the United States, police have repeatedly employed brutal force to crush the protests.

Similar encampments have begun to appear at universities outside the West.

According to the CBC, in dismissing the application, the Quebec judge wrote:

The court is of the opinion that the balance of inconveniences leans more toward the protesters, whose freedom of expression and to gather peacefully would be affected significantly…

Even if the plaintiffs were deemed to be acting in the public interest, something the court does not have to consider, the evidence presented by the plaintiffs are insufficient.

Today, I discussed these developments with geopolitical analyst Leith Marouf, who is currently based in Beirut but who studied at Concordia University in Montreal. After being elected to Concordia’s student union in 2001, Marouf was himself targeted repeatedly by Concordia’s administration and the Zionist lobby.

Marouf and I also discussed the state of free speech in the United States and Canada, and the looming ‘summer of discontent’.

You can watch and listen to our discussion here:

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  • Agnes Davis

    I am an old woman who farmed most of my life.
    Democracy requires people to think and speak and if we fail to allow this we do not have democracy.
    I am very worried about the promotion, and encouragement of ethnic differences with power being used to silence some groups and promote others, like the Jewish Religion.
    All citizens should be free to say their opinions but they must understand that all citizens must have the same right.
    I think the students have a right and a duty to protest genocide and undemocratic acts no matter who is doing it and they must be allowed to demonstrate as groups.

  • Lou Cassivi

    Remarkable how slender rays of light continue to break through the overwhelming gloom in the new Canada. Bravo, Judge.

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