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e-4802 (Foreign affairs)

Initiated by Laurel Russwurm from Elmira, Ontario

Original language of petition: English

Petition to the House of Commons in Parliament assembled

  • In 1949 the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) was established to carry out direct relief and works programs for Palestinian refugees;
  • UNRWA is the primary provider of humanitarian aid: food, social services, healthcare, schools, refugee camps, and microfinance, sustaining the lives of millions of civilians, more than half of them children, in the Palestinian territory of Gaza, blockaded by Israel since 2007;
  • South Africa submitted an Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide in the Gaza Strip (South Africa v. Israel) to the International Court of Justice (ICJ);
  • After considering both application and oral arguments, the Court concluded genocide was “plausible.”;
  • In its January 26th Order, the ICJ cited UNRWA statements documenting dire conditions in the Gaza Strip, before introducing its fourth Provisional Measure: “The State of Israel shall take immediate and effective measures to enable the provision of urgently needed basic services and humanitarian assistance to address the adverse conditions of life faced by Palestinians in the Gaza Strip;” and
  • Hours later, Israel leveled allegations against a dozen UNRWA employees, and Canada “paused” humanitarian funding committed to UNRWA without waiting for an Investigation.
We, the undersigned, citizens and residents of Canada, call upon the Government of Canada to live up to our obligations under the Genocide Convention, to prevent the catastrophic humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip from “deteriorating further before the Court renders its final judgment,” by:
1. Reinstating Canada’s UNRWA funding; and
2. Advocating other countries do the same to prevent the collapse of UNRWA when Gaza’s lifeline is needed most.
Open for signature
February 12, 2024, at 2:03 p.m. (EDT)
Closed for signature
March 13, 2024, at 2:03 p.m. (EDT)
Presented to the House of Commons
Mike Morrice (Kitchener Centre)
April 8, 2024 (Petition No. 441-02290)
Photo - Mike Morrice
Kitchener Centre
Green Party Caucus