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IJV endorses United Church Working Group call to boycott settlement products

June 9, 2012

Independent Jewish Voices-Canada (IJV) today issued a response endorsing the recommendations of the United Church of Canada's Working Group on Israel/Palestine Policy (WGIP). Key WGIP recommendations IJV supports include:
(1) Non-violent actions to end the Israeli occupation, including economic boycott of products produced in the settlements and consideration of divestment from companies profiting from or supporting the occupation;
(2) A just resolution to the plight of Palestinian refugees;
(3) Christians visiting occupied Palestine and participating in ecumenical accompaniment programs.

IJV member Rabbi David Mivasair explained, "We are grateful to the United Church for undertaking this careful and principled review, and we endorse its thoughtful recommendations for ethical action to support justice for both Palestinians and Israelis."

Rabbi Mivasair also called attention to the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs' (CIJA's) defamatory attack on the Report and its coercive campaign to defeat the endorsement of the report at the United Church 41st General Council in August. CIJA has threatened severe consequences if the United Church democratically votes to endorse the Report's recommendations.

"Contrary to its posturing, CIJA does not represent the broad spectrum of opinion of Canadian Jewry, but rather a very narrow band within that spectrum," Rabbi Mivasair explained. "It is a political advocacy organization focused on serving the Netanyahu-Lieberman government's agenda. CIJA has mobilized massive financial resources to give itself an image of credibility, but has never attempted to determine whether its hard line views are, in fact, supported by Canadian Jewry."

IJV steering committee member Howard Davidson continued: "When we learned that CIJA plans to send its 18 page defamatory attack on the WGIP report to United Church Presbyteries and GC41 Commissioners across Canada, we felt we had to stand in support of the United Church's right to determine their own policies, free from CIJA's coercion."

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Independent Jewish Voices-Canada (IJV) is a national organization of Jews committed to a just resolution of the Israel/Palestine conflict based on international law and respect for the human rights of all people. IJV has chapters in Halifax, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Hamilton, Winnipeg, Vancouver and Victoria.

For more information contact:
Rabbi David Mivasair
Independent Jewish Voices Canada
Phone: 604-781-7839

Howard Davidson
Member, national steering committee
Independent Jewish Voices Canada
Phone: 416-944-3914

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