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  • Allied Voices for Israel (AVI)

Universities must follow the University of Calgary's example

PLUS: AVI Concordia student speaks out on CBC Radio-Canada, our first Allyship Committee meeting, Yom Ha'atzmaut unity rally in Montreal, and more!

Click the above graphic to read our full statement 

On the morning of Saturday, May 11th, the University of Alberta authorized the Edmonton Police Service to dismantle an illegal antisemitic encampment set up on campus, becoming the second Canadian university to do so after the University of Calgary.

These have been the only two Canadian schools to take necessary actions to protect their students and dismantle these unlawful and xenophobic encampments that have plagued our nation.

We at Allied Voices for Israel (AVI) continue to call on the University of Toronto, McGill, McMaster, Western, U of Ottawa, UBC, and others to follow the important precedent set by U of Calgary and U of Alberta – and allow law enforcement agencies to uphold the law and protect Canadian students.

These encampments are not simply an attack against Jewish students but an attack against the values and ethics we hold dear as Canadians. Universities must take a stand against individuals who refuse to comply with maintaining a safe campus environment.⁠

Click the above image to watch Ora's full interview in French

On May 2, our Campus Media Fellow and Concordia student Ora Bar was interviewed by CBC Radio-Canada on the ongoing anti-Israel encampment set up at McGill University by activists in protest of Israel’s defensive war against Hamas terrorists in Gaza.

At the end of the interview, Ora was asked about the pro-Palestinian movement, and she said their message actually isn’t pro-Palestinian – it is anti-Israel and anti-Zionist. Intifada, said quietly or loud, is a call for violence against the Jewish People, Ora said.

Kol Hakavod, Ora, for being a brave defender of justice and human rights! To watch her full interview (in French), please click here.

AVI Allyship Committee, including individuals who represent various communities across Canada, host a meeting on May 14

We held a successful meeting of our AVI Allyship Committee earlier this week, consisting of allies from diverse backgrounds and walks of life across Canada, all united by a singular purpose – to fight against hatred and spread unity and peace to their communities.

We are proud to share that two AVI students who are graduating this year (Justin Chow at the University of Toronto and Jean-Luc Mudingayi at the University of Calgary) have joined the committee in a bid to further their efforts as ambassadors for Am Yisrael.

To get involved, meet other incredible and inspiring allies, and learn more about our initiatives, connect with Kristin Berry, a Christian ally to the Jewish people and Chair of our Allyship Committee. Click here to get in touch with Kristin!

Left: AVI staff Noa Peretz Benchaya with students in Montreal; Right: Iranian ally and member of AVI's allyship committee, Reza Azarpoor

High School and Campus Advisor Noa Peretz Benchaya had a blast connecting with Jewish students, community members, and allies at Montreal’s Yom Ha’atzmaut community rally this week. Hundreds arrived to show their support for Israel wearing white and blue!

Left to right: Director of Operations and Development Lea J. Bloom, MP Kevin Vuong, and AVI Stakeholder Sarah Nadal

In Toronto, our Director of Operations & Development Lea J. Bloom attended two flag raising ceremonies for Yom Ha'atzmaut alongside AVI stakeholder Sarah Nadal and met with incredible allies such as MP Kevin Vuong.

The first ceremony was at Toronto City Hall, hosted by York Centre Councillor James Pasternak and Consul General of Israel in Toronto Idit Shamir. The second ceremony was hosted by the Ontario Government in Queens Park to support Toronto’s Jewish community and allies, and to mark 76 years of Israel’s independence.

Iranian-Canadian ally Reza Azarpoor is our #allyspotlight!

This week’s #AllySpotlight is none other than Iranian-Canadian patriot and proud ally Reza Azarpoor.

A member of the LGBTQIA+ community, Reza is an Iranian-Canadian patriot who currently resides in Montreal and is on the frontlines fighting for liberty, regardless of borders.

He bravely advocates to dismantle oppressive regimes like the one in his home country of Iran, as well as brutal terrorist regimes like Hamas. He fearlessly calls out antisemitic politicians of Iranian origin in Quebec, and is a staunch Zionist and supporter of democracy.

“It’s very important that people and also the authorities realize that those people don’t represent Iranians,” says Reza. “Together, we’re stronger. You can always count on me.”

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