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SENATORS’ STATEMENTS — Support for Israel

April 16, 2024

Hon. Donald Neil Plett (Leader of the Opposition)

Honourable senators, I rise today to unequivocally condemn the brazen and unprecedented attacks launched against Israel by the Iranian regime over the weekend.

Approximately 300 missiles, drones and ballistic missiles were launched by Iran and its proxies to target Israel, but Israel, with the help of the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Jordan and Saudi Arabia, successfully opposed the attack and minimal damage occurred. As a matter of fact, most of the attacks were intercepted outside of Israel’s borders.

I welcome the statement made over the weekend by the leaders of the Group of Seven advanced democracies that expressed full solidarity with and support for Israel and its people and reaffirmed our commitment toward its security, in addition to unequivocally condemning, in the strongest terms, Iran’s direct and unprecedented attack against Israel.

I strongly believe that the Government of Canada needs to do more. It needs to designate the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps as a terrorist organization immediately. We need to act now to protect our people and block the Iranian regime from using our country, Canada, as a location to plan, coordinate and raise funds. There are over 700 agents of the IRGC in Canada who intimidate and attack our fellow citizens.

Colleagues, this is the same regime that supported Hamas’s heinous terrorist attacks and the unthinkable atrocities against men, women and children of Israel on October 7, 2023. I, and many of my colleagues here in this chamber, have asked the Government of Canada to ban these terrorists by listing them as a terrorist organization. The Government of Canada needs to demonstrate leadership. It is astonishing that they have not done so yet, even more so in the aftermath of 55 Canadians losing their lives in the attack on Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752.

Regrettably, over the last months and years, there have been many inconsistencies where words and actions don’t match up. The House of Commons adopted a motion for the IRGC to be designated a terrorist organization six years ago, colleagues. Nothing was done. A few weeks ago, Prime Minister Trudeau turned his back on Israel by supporting a motion in the House of Commons, cooked up at the last minute by his NDP coalition partners. Furthermore, Minister Joly recently indicated that Canada would stop all arms exports to Israel, weakening Israel’s ability to defend itself.

The Trudeau government does not demonstrate the leadership that Canadians want and deserve. The Conservatives believe Israel has a right to defend itself. We believe that you cannot achieve lasting peace in the Middle East by appeasing mullahs in Tehran and their terrorist proxies, including Hamas.

I stand with Israel, colleagues. Conservatives stand with Israel, and I hope every member in this Senate stands with Israel.

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