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Palestinian community in Montreal voices support for victims of war between Israel, Hamas


Dozens took to the streets in downtown Montreal Sunday for a protest against Canada’s involvement with NATO.

It was organized by the Mouvement Québécois pour la Paix, a group that also supports Palestinians in the war between Israel and Hamas.

They started at Place du Canada and walked east to the U.S. consulate to protest that country and the West's support for Israel. Many say this weekend's destruction shows just how badly the situation has deteriorated in Gaza.  

So far, more than 680 people in Gaza have been killed since Saturday, while hostilities have killed around 900 people in Israel, the Associated Press reported Monday.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has ordered a complete siege on the Gaza Strip following unprecedented attacks on Israel by Hamas.

"I think that one can understand this action by Hamas first as a cry of somebody desperate to be heard and second as a warning that, look, you cannot have peace if we are suffering. If you suffer, we make you suffer with us," said Rachad Antonius, a retired professor who taught sociology at the Université du Québec à Montréal.

Sarah Shamy is an organizer with the Palestinian Youth Movement in Montreal. She said the community stands firmly with those in Gaza.

"What we're seeing today is a people who have been under blockade for over 16 years deprived of clean water, deprived of medical supplies, deprived of their dignity and, who, despite these conditions, remain steadfast and so what they are fighting against is a colonial power," she said.

That power, some analysts say, has to end its military occupation of the West Bank for there to be any hope of a resolution.

"There's a large number of issues to settle with respect to the West Bank, the borders of 1967, how these peoples can live together, people can live together you don't have to hate your neighbour because he's Jewish or because he's Muslim so this can be resolved," said John Philpot, an expert in international criminal law.

"The occupation has to end," he added, otherwise the fighting will continue and could even broaden. Top Stories

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