Wednesday, March 29, 2006

No Change By Hamas, No Change For Hamas

Peter MacKay's initial comments about keeping financial assistance flowing to the Hamas-led Palestinian Authority had me wondering whether the professional diplos in Fort Pearson had had him whipped into line.

I am happy to state that this is not the case:

Canada is cutting assistance and diplomatic ties to the Palestinian Authority because the new Hamas government has not renounced violence.
However, Ottawa will still provide humanitarian aid to the Palestinian people through the United Nations and other organizations.

Foreign Affairs Minister Peter MacKay announced the news Wednesday after the Palestinian Legislative Council approved the formation of a Hamas-led government.

“The stated platform of this government has not addressed the concerns raised by Canada and others concerning non-violence, the recognition of Israel, and acceptance of previous agreements and obligations, including the Roadmap for Peace,” MacKay said in a statement.

“As a result, Canada will have no contact with the members of the Hamas cabinet and is suspending assistance to the Palestinian Authority.”

Tnis is almost as hard a line as the new Kadima-led Israeli government is likely to take.

It's refreshing to have a government in Ottawa that recognizes that a terrorist group clad in the authority of government is still a terrorist group. And it should serve notice to terrorist organizations in Canada that the days of tolerance and wilful blindness towards their fundraising, publicity and organizational activites in Canada may also be ending.

This is what condemning terrorism is about. Not windy speeches at the United Nations.

Source: Toronto Star

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