PLO flag at Al-Quds Day rally in Toronto (archive)
PLO flag at Al-Quds Day rally in Toronto (archive)Israel National News

B'nai Brith Canada reported on Thursday that the Al-Quds Day rally in Toronto, which was held last week, once again turned into a hatefest.

In last Saturday’s rally, B’nai Brith said, participants chanted genocidal slogans and speakers praised terrorists, creating a hostile environment for Jews in the streets of downtown Toronto, Canada’s largest city.

Among the shocking sights at Al-Quds Day 2023 was the brandishing of a Hezbollah flag and speakers in senior positions with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) and Samidoun. Hezbollah and the PFLP are designated-terrorist entities in Canada, while Samidoun is recognized as a terrorist front group by Israel.

Speakers at the rally included Khaled Barakat, a senior member of the PFLP, and Charlotte Kates, International Coordinator of Samidoun, both of whom are the subjects of ongoing B’nai Brith investigations for their Canada-based activities.

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.

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."

Other participants at last Saturday’s rally included Nazih Khatatba, publisher of the antisemitic and Holocaust-distorting Al Meshwar publication, and Firas Al-Najim, an Ontario organizer known for praising Iranian dictators and participating in Death–to-America rallies.

“Al Quds Day is many things, but a civil protest it is not,” said Michael Mostyn, Chief Executive Officer of B’nai Brith Canada. “It is designed to incite hate. Calls to destroy Israel, endorsement of terrorists and the participation of those who minimize the Holocaust converged in the nation’s largest city to create a toxic, hateful environment that threatens the safety of its Jewish population. How is this acceptable?”