Advocates for a Gaza Ceasefire rallied at MP Ben Carr’s Winnipeg office on Monday

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by Candice Bodnaruk

On March 25, 2024 at 2pm, about 20 people gathered outside Carr’s office with placards and noisemakers to call out Carr for his recent vote in parliament against an NDP motion that demanded an end to Canadian weapons sales to Israel, an immediate ceasefire and unimpeded humanitarian aid to Palestinians in Gaza.

Members of Peace Alliance Winnipeg, Sing for Humanity and other groups handed out leaflets to passerby and chanted “Not Another Nickel, Not Another Dime, No More Money for Israel’s Crimes”, “Stop Killing Kids” and “Ben Carr You Can’t Hide, We Charge You with Genocide!”. All the while Carr’s office building remained locked and no one came out to engage with the crowd. Last fall Carr also spoke against a ceasefire in Gaza

Earlier in the week Carr was one of only 3 Liberal MPs to vote against a non-binding NDP motion. The motion originally called for the recognition of a Palestinian state, an immediate ceasefire, the release of all hostages, suspending trade of all military goods with Israel, advocating for an end to the occupation of Palestine, and to ban on extremist settlers from Canada.

All Bloc Quebcois and Green MPs supported the motion while Pierre Poilievre and the Conservatives voted against it. Before it was passed, the motion was altered somewhat to appease critics, including requiring Hamas to lay down arms and omitting recognizing Palestinian statehood.

Along with Canada, the United States, Germany, France, the UK and Japan do not recognize Palestine as a state.

In their protest against Carr, people carried signs with messages like “Winnipeg Stands Forever with Gaza” and “Carr End Support for Israeli Genocide”.

Also on Monday the UN Security Council also passed a ceasefire motion, all member countries voted in favour with the United States abstaining.

Since October 7, at least 32,414 Palestinians have been killed in Israeli attacks on Gaza, while 74,787 have been wounded.

Although Carr was in Winnipeg the day of the protest, his office was completely closed to the public and his constituents. Protesters eventually did gain entry to the building and left postcards outside Carr’s door- asking him to support a ceasefire call in Gaza. People also postered in the area calling on Carr’s constituents to write, call or email him demanding that he support an immediate end to Israel’s genocide in Gaza.

In Winnipeg people have been engaging in protests against MPs since October, calling on them to support an immediate ceasefire as well as to end Canadian weapons sales to Israel. Previous rallies have been held at Liberal MPs Dan Vandal’s and Terry Duguid’s offices as well as Conservative MP Marty Morantz’s Winnipeg office.

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