Toronto City Hall
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B’nai Brith Canada has denounced an Arabic newspaper in the Toronto area for an article praising the murder of five people during the terrorist attack in Bnei Brak last Tuesday.

According to B’nai Brith, the Arabic language article from the April 1 edition of al-Meshwar “hailed the recent Bnei Brak terror attack as an ‘operation of exceptional quality.’”

Noting that al-Meshwar has “a long history of anti-Jewish incitement,” B’nai Brith said that the article – headlined “Ramadan Comes Early in Palestine This Year” – was a “lengthy paen” to the terrorist who opened fire in Bnei Brak last week and killed five people.

B’nai Brith said that the article described how terrorist Dia Hamarsha “executed an operation of exceptional quality against the settlers of the enemy, displaying steadfastness, composure, professionalism and drama that could have come from the world of film.”

“It goes on to gleefully recount exactly how Hamarsha murdered his five victims, falsely describing them as ‘settlers,’ even though the massacre occurred in B’nei Brak, a city located within Israel’s internationally-recognized territory,” B’nai Brith said. “The article repeatedly describes Hamarsha – who was killed by police responding to the attack – as a martyr or ‘shaheed,’ an honorific Arabic term reserved for someone who sacrifices their life for a righteous cause.”

The group noted that a similar article was published by the newspaper on March 31 on their website that described the terror attack as “an important evolution in the quality and effectiveness of the operations.”

B’nai Brith said it intends to file a complaint with the Toronto police in connection to the articles.

“These recent articles from al-Meshwar are extremely sickening, and also dangerous,” said B’nai Brith Canada CEO Michael Mostyn. “We have seen, especially over the past year, how violence in the Middle East can spill over into attacks on Canadian Jews. Glorifying the murder of Israeli civilians to a broad audience recklessly endangers Jews and Israelis in Canada.”

In response to a campaign by B’nai Brith, the Ontario government removed COVID-19 awareness ads from al-Meshwar in April 2021, with many other advertisers following suit.

B’nai Brith also persuaded Rogers TV to cancel an Arabic-language TV show after it featured a segment with al-Neshwar editor Nazih Khatatba denying the Holocaust.

In July 2020, al-Meshwarpublished an article falsely accusing Israel of burying Palestinians alive and stealing their organs, B’nai Brith Canada said in a statement.

The February 28, 2020 edition of al-Meshwar dedicates a half-page to “The Abuse of the Martyrs and the Manipulation of Their Bodies Are Jewish Commandments and Israeli Directives” by Mustafa Yusuf al-Lidawi.

According to al-Lidawi’s Facebook page, he served as a member of Hamas’ Department of Arab and Islamic Relations.