Protesters target Huntingdon mayor for statements on Israel
HUNTINGDON, QC - Huntingdon mayor Stephane Gendron's sharp attacks on Israel broadcast on TV in Quebec on December 27, 2011 attracted protesters to the small town Thursday.
A brigade of picket-wielding objectors arrived in the town to express their vehement disagreement with his description of Israel as "an apartheid state," "that should cease to exist."
He made the comments on a program he co-hosts called Face a Face which is broadcast on on the V Television Network.
One protester argued that it is a hateful statement.
"He says Israel should not exist and there's approximately six million Jews living in Israel. Therefore he's saying six million Jews should not exist," said Meir Weinstein, of the Jewish Defence League. "That's hateful, that's inflammatory and as a mayor he should not be in office."
Weinstein says that the TV station has thus far done nothing to distance itself from his statements.
"They should drop him in a minute," said Weinstein. "And so far they have not but we're going to be focusing our attention on them as well looking at their advertisers."
Gendron declined CTV Montreal's many interview requests but in a statement said, "It's sad to see certain groups distort comments concerning the way in which Israel behaves vis-à-vis the Palestinians into anti-Semitic comments."
Even some locals said that they were not proud of their mayor.
"He's a dictator," said Wayne McDowell. "He thinks that what he says goes and he's like the almighty."
A few police officers watched on as the protesters made their point, while the doors to the town hall remained locked.