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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau condemned hatred toward Muslims at Thursday’s national summit on Islamophobia and vowed that his government would continue taking action to “stamp out hate.”
Thursday’s virtual event brought together government ministers and Muslim community leaders to discuss how to combat the recent rise of Islamophobia in Canada. It comes a few weeks after a man deliberately drove into a Muslim family in London, Ont., killing four people and leaving a child injured, and other attacks on Muslims in Hamilton, Ont., and near Edmonton.
The summit comes a day after another event focused on antisemitism. Both events are part of the government’s Anti-Racism Strategy.
“Right now, we do have to fight for the kind of Canada we all want to see. A place where we celebrate diversity, where we stand together, where we look out for each other,” Mr. Trudeau said at the summit. “That’s the promise our country must work hard to live up to. Because too many times and for too many people, that promise has been broken.”
Mr. Trudeau was joined by Bardish Chagger, the Minister of Diversity and Inclusion, as well as Omar Alghabra, the Minister of Transport, who both spoke at the opening session.
Even as the event got underway, the comment section of the Facebook livestream saw hateful and discriminatory remarks toward the Muslim community. These messages prompted Ontario Senator Salma Ataullahjan to react on Twitter.
“The #Islamophobiasummit has barely begun, and the comments are already overrun by hate,” she tweeted above screenshots of some of the responses. “I am horrified – but not surprised – by the ongoing #hatespeech being spewed towards Muslim Canadians.”
OPPOSITION LEADERS WANTED CHANCE TO SPEAK AT ANTISEMITISM SUMMIT - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau pledged support for the Jewish community in the face of rising hate-motivated crimes at his government’s national antisemitism summit, but other federal party leaders expressed frustration at not being invited to speak at the event.
HALIFAX SECURITY FORUM TO BE HELD IN TAIWAN - The annual Halifax defence and security forum is scheduled for Taipei in January next year. The conference previously drew the ire of Beijing for lauding Taiwan’s President, and the event in Taipei will take place just weeks before the 2022 Winter Olympics in China.
GOVERNMENT DOCS ON PORN REGULATOR WILL TAKE YEARS TO ACCESS - NDP ethics critic Charlie Angus’s request for documents related to a new regulator that will handle child pornography and exploitive material could take more than six years for the government to process, according to a response from the Justice Department.
PAUL SAYS “SMALL GROUP” BEHIND GREEN PARTY COURT CASE AGAINST HER - Green Party Leader Annamie Paul said that the legal challenge from her own party is the work of a “small group” of outgoing executives. Ms. Paul sidestepped further questions about the legal proceedings at the opening of her campaign office in Toronto Centre on Thursday morning.
PRIME MINISTER'S DAY
The Prime Minister spoke at the National Summit on Islamophobia early Thursday afternoon.
Bloc Quebecois Leader Yves-François Blanchet visited small businesses in Western Quebec this morning. He then had lunch with the mayors from the Témiscamingue region of the province.
Conservative Party Leader Erin O’Toole is in Ottawa this week.
Green Party Leader Annamie Paul held an event to officially open her campaign office in the riding of Toronto Centre on Thursday morning.
NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh will be in Montreal this evening to participate in the Outremont federal NDP nomination meeting for Ève Péclet.
John Ibbitson (The Globe and Mail) on how the Canada-U.S. border may be reopening, but relations between the countries are far from normal: “During the COVID-19 pandemic, Americans once again demonstrated their ingenuity, developing vaccines that now protect many millions of people around the world, including millions of Canadians. But in that time we have also witnessed America unravelling.”
Konrad Yakabuski (The Globe and Mail) on how Mark Carney said “no” to the rubber-chicken circuit, again: “The coming federal campaign, with the Liberals leading in the polls but not assured of a majority, may be Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s last one as Liberal Leader. But succeeding him would require an all-in commitment to working in the political trenches that Mr. Carney still seems unwilling or incapable of making.”
The Globe and Mail Editorial Board on why Toronto’s parks are no place to house the homeless: “The legitimate concerns homeless people had about COVID-19 can be addressed, and they largely have been. By last October, there was no longer a reason to allow several of central Toronto’s few green spaces to become encampments, and today that is more true than ever.”
Chris Selley (Ottawa Citizen) on why bilingualism is the enemy of Ottawa’s inclusivity agenda: “If Justin Trudeau could have found a suitable candidate for Rideau Hall who was perfectly qualified, Indigenous and fluent in both English and French, he would have jumped at the chance. He could have bolstered his reconciliation and bilingualism bona fides simultaneously and saved himself a pretty major headache in the francophone media.”
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