B’nai Brith Canada on Monday wrote to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), the revenue service of the federal government of Canada, demanding that it examine the charitable status of mosques that facilitated the recent Al-Quds Day hate-fest in downtown Toronto.
In a statement, B’nai Brith said that on Saturday, protesters who were mostly bused in from pick-up locations at mosques near Toronto, gathered downtown to call for the elimination of Israel.
As they marched around Nathan Philips Square, they chanted “Long live the intifada!”. In addition, protesters chanted, “We heed your call, oh Nasrallah!” in reference to Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Hezbollah, a designated terrorist entity in Canada.
This came during a speech delivered by Ali Sbeiti, a Montreal-based cleric whose passport was revoked by the Government of Canada in 2014 before being restored the following year.
B’nai Brith obtained an image distributed by Al-Quds Day organizers that lists five mosques located in Southern Ontario as the bus pick-up locations for people travelling to the Toronto rally. Four of the five mosques involved operate as registered charities and some have also had clergy attend and deliver speeches at previous Toronto rallies.
Three of the five mosques have been the subject of prior complaints by B’nai Brith to the CRA over apparent antisemitic or pro-terrorist conduct, yet little or no action has been taken against those Islamic charities.
“The ongoing impunity for religious charities that breach the conditions of their charitable status is unacceptable and against public policy,” said Michael Mostyn, Chief Executive Officer of B’nai Brith Canada. “Canadian taxpayers must not be forced to subsidize the promotion of hatred against Jews or Israelis and glorifying acts of terrorism, via our charities system.”
Al-Quds Day was declared in 1979 by Ayatollah Khomeini, the leader of the Iranian Revolution. It is marked throughout the Middle East and in countries around the world, including the United States.
During Al-Quds Day, rallies are held around the world and are used to incite against Israelis and Jews.
Al-Quds Day events in Canada have become a notorious forum for the promotion of antisemitism, terrorism and even calls for genocide. At the 2014 Toronto iteration of the event, Moulana Zaki Baqri called for “Yahoodi,” i.e. Jews, to be “dismantled.” In 2013 and 2016, speakers called for Israelis to be shot.
In 2018, Sheikh Shafiq Hudda, director of the Islamic Humanitarian Service in Kitchener, Ontario, said during an Al-Quds Day rally that a day will come when we will see "the eradication of the unjust powers, such as the American empire, such as the Israeli Zionists."
He challenged the IDF to enter Gaza and "fight like men, not cowards," saying, "You will leave in body bags."
At the 2020 virtual Canadian al-Quds Day event, one speaker said of “Zionist citizens of so-called Israel” that “We must treat them as we would treat any thieves and murderers.” This was followed by a video that described Zionism, the Jewish national liberation movement, as a “Satanic endeavor.” The video went on to identify Zionism with “the military-industrial complex, elite-run societies, corporatocracies” and “the 1% who rule this planet.”