Friday, March 20, 2009

Canada closes doors on Galloway

British lawmaker George Galloway has been banned from visiting Canada to deliver an anti-war speech over his support for blockaded Gaza.

Canada's immigration service says the outspoken anti-war legislator was denied entry on national security grounds.

Calling the ban "idiotic", Galloway vowed to use all means at his disposal to overturn the ruling.

"The outrageous decision is not something I'm prepared to accept," Galloway said Friday.

Meanwhile, the Canadian immigration ministry said the decision would not be overturned since it was designed to "protect Canadians from people who fund, support or engage in terrorism".

Galloway violated EU sanctions on Gaza earlier in March by handing over more than 1.5 million pounds of humanitarian aid to the Palestinian government in the Gaza Strip.

Canada considers Hamas, the democratically-elected Palestinian government confined to the territory, as a terrorist group.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Israel annexing East Jerusalem, says EU

A confidential EU report accuses the Israeli government of using settlement expansion, house demolitions, discriminatory housing policies and the West Bank barrier as a way of "actively pursuing the illegal annexation" of East Jerusalem.

The document says Israel has accelerated its plans for East Jerusalem, and is undermining the Palestinian Authority's credibility and weakening support for peace talks. "Israel's actions in and around Jerusalem constitute one of the most acute challenges to Israeli-Palestinian peace-making," says the document, EU Heads of Mission Report on East Jerusalem. The report, obtained by the Guardian.