Threat of Violence Forces Cancellation of Pro-Israel Event

The Canadian Institute for Jewish Research (CIJR) and the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA) were forced to cancel a pro-Israel event after conversations with police indicated a legitimate threat of violent protests. 

CIJR and CAMERA were schedule to host Canadian MP Marc Garneau for a talk about Canada-Israel relations. When Montreal police alerted CIJR that there was an organized protest scheduled for outside of the event, CIJR moved to postpone the lecture indefinitely.

According to the Concordian, those who intended to attend the lecture were informed that it was canceled via Facebook.

Bradley Martin, CAMERA Fellow and Representative for Montreal and a student at Concordia, wrote on the event’s Facebook page at around noon on Jan. 12 announcing the talk had been cancelled because the Montreal Police had notified them of a violent protest was set to take place because of this event. At around 7 p.m., Martin posted to clarify what had happened, writing the following: “This morning, the Montreal Police informed CIJR that their cyber division detected a planned protest of the event. This protest was estimated to consist of about sixty demonstrators and considered to be hostile and violent. Under the circumstances, it was determined that the venue could not be secured properly and the safety of attendants would be at risk. It was therefore decided that the event would not take place as planned and be postponed indefinitely.”

In the post, Martin spoke for both organizations and said that they were very unhappy with the situation. “We are very disappointed and outraged about the fact that our rights, and the rights of an elected Member of Parliament, to freedom of speech and freedom of assembly have been compromised,” Martin wrote. “Threats of violence and intimidation tactics are not acceptable behaviors and cannot be tolerated under any circumstances. We live in a beautiful country, where the freedom of speech and assembly are foundational to our way of life.”

Jack Kinsler, CIJR’s National Chairman, made the decision to cancel the event and told the Concordian that he felt the they had no choice but to cancel the event because the call from the police happened so soon before the talk was set to happen, and because they hadn’t organized the event themselves.

"On the very same day that 40 world leaders joined one million people in Paris, France in a march to honor the 17 innocent victims murdered by radical Islamists, the Montreal community was targeted by it's own extremists," Aviva Slomich, International Director of CAMERA on Campus told TruthRevolt. "CAMERA, along with the Canadian Institute for Jewish Research, had scheduled months in advance Canadian Member of Parliament Marc Garneau to speak on Canadian- Israeli Relations."

"The Montreal community, which was already rocked by the horrific attacks that occurred only a fews days ago in Paris, as many Canadian Jews have relatives in France, was again forced to fear for its safety by those who threatened a peaceful event at the Concordia campus with violence," she added.  "CAMERA refuses to ignore such harassment of pro-Israel students and community members. The true nature of supposed "pro-Palestinian" activists must be exposed. the Universities, the community and the police must stand and support those who truly support the values of the West instead of giving way to threats and intimidation."