PFLP MP Khalida Jarrar
PFLP MP Khalida JarrarIssam Rimawi/Flash 90

After a member of parliament for the New Democratic Party (NDP) called for support for a jailed leader of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), which is designated as a terrorist entity in Canada, B’nai Brith Canada denounced the party’s “blind eye” toward violence against Jews.

On Monday, NDP MP and parliamentary critic for ethics Charlie Angus referred to jailed senior political leader of the PFLP Khalida Jarrar as a “human rights campaigner” and called for her release from jail.

Designated by Canada as a terrorist organization, the PFLP is responsible for the deaths of hundreds of people, including Canadian citizens.

Angus said that “Israel’s arbitrary detention of Palestinian MP (Khalida Jarrar) deserves international condemnation.”

He added, “Their refusal to let her attend her daughter’s funeral is a toxic abuse of human rights. Canada needs to speak up.”

"It is utterly unacceptable that a Canadian MP would advocate for a convicted terrorist and leader of a designated terrorist entity in Canada that has murdered hundreds of people, including Canadian citizens," B'nai Brith Canada tweeted.

In a statement, B’nai Brith noted that Jarrar is serving time in prison for her part in organizing the bomb attack that killed Israeli teenager Rina Shnerb in August 2019.

“(NPD leader) Jagmeet Singh is allowing the federal NDP to slide down a slippery slope of normalizing anti-Semitism, and needs to get a grip on his MPs and party members before it’s too late,” said B’nai Brith Canada CEO Michael Mostyn. “The past few months have seen an unprecedented increase in physical violence against Canadian Jews.”

He added, “It is utterly unacceptable, especially in this climate, that a Canadian MP would advocate for a senior leader of a terrorist group… without facing discipline.”

Mostyn noted that “picking on Jews” was not a “viable long-term political strategy” for former UK Labor Party leader Jeremy Corbyn under whose leadership the party suffered a historic loss in the 2019 general election, winning their lowest share of seats since 1935.

Angus replied to Mostyn on Twitter, saying “The attacks continue.”

“B’nai Brith accused me of anti-Semitic conspiracy for reposting articles from (The Guardian),” said Angus. “Now they attack me for questioning Israel's heartless refusal to let elected MP (Khalida Jarrar) attend her daughter's funeral. Do better.”

B’nai Brith also called out the NDP, one of Canada’s main political parties that in the past has formed the federal opposition and has won elections at the provincial level, for failing to adhere to its own guidelines on anti-Semitism.

“In April, the federal NDP adopted a policy calling on Canada to single out Israel by banning arms sales to the Jewish state,” said B’nai Brith. “Singh assured Canadians at the time that this did not indicate a tolerance for anti-Semitism within the NDP, but has failed to translate his words into action.”