Trudeau apologized to the Jewish refugees who were not in Canada
Trudeau apologized to the Jewish refugees who were not in Canada
Trudeau says Canada’s 1939 refusal to accept ship of Jewish refugees emboldened Hitler
10 November, 2018, 15:57
More than 250 of them ultimately died in the Holocaust.
It started as an apology for a shameful chapter in Canadian history and ended with an urgent call to fight anti-Semitism here and now.
The ensuing days have seen countrywide vigils and, Trudeau said, calls for the government do to more through a federal program that funds security improvements at places at risk of hate-motivated crimes, such as synagogues.
"I am here, the third generation in Canada, because Canada opened its arms, too late for many but in time for us". "We let anti-Semitism take hold in our communities and become our official policy", Trudeau said.
Standing in the Canadian parliament chamber, Trudeau spoke in both English and French as he apologized.
Trudeau said Holocaust deniers still exist and anti-Semitism remains prevalent in Canada - the latest numbers from Statistics Canada show Jews are the most frequent target of religiously motivated hate crimes - and North America, shadowed by the shooting deaths of 11 worshippers inside a Pittsburgh synagogue nearly two weeks ago.
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"Holocaust deniers still exist", he said.
"Anti-Semitic incidents and attacks spanned the political spectrum, ranging from the far-right to the far-left, with significant contributions from Islamic and Arab nationalists as well", the report said.
"In 1939, Canada turned its back on 907 Jewish refugees, deeming them unworthy of a home, and undeserving of our help".
The passengers, who had also been refused entry to Cuba and the United States, returned to Europe, where the passengers scattered across the continent. Just six months earlier, Nazis had unleashed a wave of violence against Jewish people.
"It was very important that the government made this statement and fulsome apology for the past", said Michael Mostyn, Chief Executive Officer of B'nai Brith Canada.
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