MP Mathyssen's Letter to PM Trudeau Again Asking for a Ceasefire with Letters from Constituents
The Right Honourable Justin Trudeau
Prime Minister of Canada
Office of the Prime Minister
80 Wellington Street
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A2
Friday December 1, 2023
Dear Prime Minister,
It has been over one month since my NDP colleagues and I wrote to you, as an entire caucus, to ask you to call for a full ceasefire in the Israel-Hamas war.
We have not heard back from you.
My New Democrat colleagues and I have been working day in, day out to assist Canadian families in Gaza and to advocate for a full ceasefire, release of hostages and unimpeded humanitarian aid. The effort to evacuate Canadians and their loved ones out of Gaza has been extraordinarily difficult, made worse by inconsistent responses from GAC and IRCC – issues that my colleagues and I have raised with your government many times over the past six weeks and that have yet to be resolved.
For over 50 days, people in Gaza have been experiencing the most horrendous situation of their lives. Israel’s bombardment of Gaza is causing horror and untold suffering for two million civilians who are in desperate need of an end to bombing and unimpeded - not restricted - humanitarian assistance. Humanitarian agencies tell us this is the worst they have ever seen.
I have risen in the House several times to express the fear and pain my constituents are experiencing. Every time, your government response fails to grasp the severity of this war and the horror Palestinians are living daily.
In the past week, we have been encouraged by the diplomatic work that has resulted in the release of some hostages and a pause in bombing. The people of the region need hope - and they need action and solidarity from the international community. What they do not need is a return to violence.
Despite writing to you multiple times, my constituents hear nothing from you but words, while your government refuses to call for a ceasefire that could save hundreds of thousands of lives. At the UN, your government has voted against condemnation of illegal settlements and against solidarity with UNRWA.
I am sharing with you letters from members of my community of London-Fanshawe, who are pleading once again for your government to recognize that people in Gaza face starvation and horrendous humanitarian crisis. Each day that a full ceasefire is delayed, hundreds of Palestinians die. I support their requests to your government, and I ask that you and your colleagues listen to the many Canadians who want you, personally, to call for a ceasefire.
This situation could be resolved with the political will of Canada and other countries.
While you remain silent on this horrendous humanitarian and political crisis, I urge you once again to call for a full ceasefire and a new political process that must aim for a just peace for Palestinians and Israelis – not continued violence, not killings of civilians, and not violations of international law.
Member of Parliament for London-Fanshawe
Letters from Hikma Public Affairs Council, on behalf of the Muslim community in London
Letter to PM Trudeau Calling for Ceasefire
November 1, 2023
The Right Honourable Justin Trudeau
Prime Minister of Canada
Office of the Prime Minister 80 Wellington Street Ottawa, ON K1A 0A2
Dear Prime Minister,
Since the horrifying terrorist attacks on Israeli civilians on October 7th and the beginning of this latest siege of Gaza, we, members of the New Democrat caucus, are united in grief and despair.
Our constituents are in pain. Many have lost family members and friends in Gaza and in Israel. Many fear for their loved ones.
We mourn with the Jewish community who are traumatized by the horrendous terrorist attacks by Hamas. We urge you to work harder to secure the release of all hostages, including the Canadians believed to be among them.
Canadian Palestinian and Muslim communities are telling us they are feeling unheard by this government. They, too, are in deep pain. We grieve with them.
We condemn the alarming rise in antisemitism, anti-Palestinian racism and Islamophobia in our communities and across Canada and we ask for a stronger response from your government.
Over the past three weeks more than one hundred thousand Canadians have written to us asking Canada to call for a ceasefire.
And as we write today, over 400 Canadians are trapped in the siege of Gaza, trying to survive amid the most terrible conditions and under constant bombing. People with disabilities, children, and seniors are amongst the Canadian citizens affected.
We are horrified by reports of airstrikes near hospitals, schools, and cancer facilities. We are appalled by the indiscriminate and unjustified bombing by Israel of the Jabalia refugee camp on October 31.
Israel’s siege of Gaza has killed doctors, journalists, UN staff, poets, students, parents, and over 3000 children. Each of these people had a name, a family, hopes and dreams for their futures.
This week, Save The Children confirmed that more children have been killed in Gaza than in global conflicts annually over the past four years. One child is killed every ten minutes.
None of these children were responsible for the grave crimes of October 7th.
Humanitarian organizations and the United Nations are sounding the alarm at shocking levels of human suffering in Gaza. Nearly a million people have been made homeless, with no access to food, water, fuel, medicine, or sanitation. Tens of thousands of pregnant women and babies are drinking contaminated water. Women are undergoing c-sections without anaesthetic. Children’s wounds are sanitized with vinegar from the corner store.
And in the West Bank, extremist right-wing settlers are harassing, threatening and killing innocent Palestinians as Israeli security forces watch. It has to stop, and these crimes must be prosecuted.
Prime Minister, these are extremely serious violations of international law.
This is the worst crisis in the Middle East in our lifetimes – and your government is failing to meet this moment.
Since October 11th, New Democrats are calling for an immediate ceasefire, the release of all hostages, an end to the siege of Gaza, unimpeded and immediate humanitarian access, and full respect for international law.
We are profoundly alarmed by your refusal to call for a ceasefire.
We condemn Canada’s abstention at the United Nations General Assembly on a resolution calling for “an immediate, durable and sustained humanitarian truce leading to a cessation of hostilities.”
We do not accept Canada’s brazen refusal to support ICC and ICJ investigations into the situation in Israel and Palestine. The rules of international humanitarian law apply universally and equally to all parties of an armed conflict; one war crime does not excuse another. All victims in Israel and Gaza deserve justice.
We call for an end to Canada’s arms sales to Israel. Global Affairs Canada officials cannot confirm whether Canadian weapons, components or technology are used by Israel in this latest bombardment and ground invasion of Gaza. Canadians deserve to know the extent of Canada’s complicity in this conflict.
And Canada must do more to end illegal arms transfers to Hamas.
Prime Minister, your government has long promoted the rules-based international order.
But it is clear that, in Israel and Gaza, those rules are abandoned.
We are urgently asking Canada to do the following:
• Call for an immediate ceasefire and the release of all hostages;
• Demand unimpeded humanitarian access to Gaza;
• Ensure all Canadians can safely leave the region;
• Support ICC and ICJ investigations into the situation in Israel and Palestine;
• Halt arms sales to Israel and work with partners to end illegal arms transfers to Hamas;
• Advocate for an end to the occupation of the Palestinian territories and work toward a two-state solution;
• Continue to work with partners to counter terrorism in the region;
• Invest in building a just and sustainable peace for Palestinians and Israelis.
Our goal as New Democrats has always been a just and lasting peace for Palestinians and Israelis. The global
community, Canada included, must work towards a credible peace process that will finally bring peace and
security to all in the region, while respecting the humanity and rights of all civilians, Israeli and Palestinian.
We urge you to understand the seriousness of this moment. Canadians are in deep pain and are looking for
Canada must not abandon the principles of international law and justice. We urge you to take action today.
Many lives depend on it.
Jagmeet Singh, MP
Heather McPherson, MP
Charlie Angus, MP
Timmins – James Bay
Niki Ashton, MP
Churchill – Keewatinook Aski
Taylor Bachrach, MP
Skeena – Bulkley Valley
Lisa Marie Barron, MP
Nanaimo – Ladysmith
Daniel Blaikie, MP
Elmwood – Transcona
Rachel Blaney, MP
North Island – Powell River
Alexandre Boulerice, MP
Rosemont – La-Petite-Patrie
Richard Cannings, MP
South Okanagan – West Kootenay
Laurel Collins, MP
Don Davies, MP
Leah Gazan, MP
Matthew Green, MP
Carol Hughes, MP
Algoma – Manitoulin – Kapuskasing
Lori Idlout, MP
Gord Johns, MP
Courtenay – Alberni
Peter Julian, MP
New Westminster – Burnaby
Jenny Kwan, MP
Alistair MacGregor, MP
Cowichan – Malahat - Langford
Brian Masse, MP
Lindsay Mathyssen, MP
London – Fanshawe
Bonita Zarrillo, MP
Port Moody – Coquitlam
Blake Desjarlais, MP
Randall Garrison, MP
Esquimalt – Saanich – Sooke