Toronto (April 25, 2022) – Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center (FSWC) is calling on political leaders from all levels of government in Canada to speak out unequivocally against the incitement to violence and hate voiced at yesterday’s anti-Israel rally in downtown Toronto.
Speakers at the rally, organized by several anti-Israel groups, openly called for “intifada” – violent uprising against Jews – and praised Palestinian terrorists who murdered 14 Israeli civilians in recent weeks. The crowd cheered when a speaker declared, “Israel has witnessed the deadliest attacks we’ve seen in the last 15 years, all because of Palestinian freedom fighters who are putting their lives on the line.”
Later in the rally, another speaker announced, “As we march right now, Lebanon has hit Israel with two rockets!” to which the crowd roared its approval.
“It’s extremely disturbing to see a hate rally in Toronto, especially one marked by incitement to violence,” said Michael Levitt, President and CEO of FSWC. “There should be no place in our country for the promotion of hate and the glorification of violence toward Jews or any other people. Such vile rhetoric has dire consequences for both Israelis and for Jews in Canada. Cheering on terror attacks and the murder of civilians is deplorable and must be unequivocally condemned by leaders at all levels. Jews remain the number one target of hate crimes in Toronto according to police, which only makes the messaging at yesterday’s rally all the more reprehensible. We’ve seen how public calls for violence against the Jewish community can result in actual attacks against Jews and Jewish institutions. Following yesterday’s hate-fuelled rally, we are working with Toronto Police Service to ensure the safety and protection of the city's Jewish community.”