Jewish group slams Minister Kenny's attack on Kairos

OTTAWA, Dec. 21 /CNW Telbec/ - Independent Jewish Voices (IJV) condemns Immigration Minister Kenny's politicized move to defund social-justice church-group Kairos, which received government funding for 35 years. Kenny said this occurred because, in 2007, Kairos offered a grant to Sabeel, a Palestinian NGO that doesn't mirror Conservative policy.

"This is the new McCarthyism. If you don't tow the government line, you get your funding cut. From this week's conference in Israel to the Canadian Parliamentary Committee to 'Combat Anti-Semitism', Kenny strives to stifle all criticism of Israel, falsely labelling it anti-Semitic," says IJV spokesperson Sid Shniad.

Having worked with Sabeel, IJV was surprised by the accusation. "Sabeel doesn't tolerate racism, especially, anti-Semitism," Shniad said.

Explaining why the funding was cut, Kenny's office referred to a report of NGO Monitor, a right-wing Israel-based activist group, which had erroneously stated that Sabeel supported sanctions against Israel.

NGO Monitor is headed by Gerald Steinberg, a professor at Bar Ilan, known as Israel's most right wing university. Sabeel has made no statement on sanctions or divestment.

IJV is appalled.

SOURCE INDEPENDENT JEWISH VOICES (CANADA)

For further information: For further information: Sid Shniad, spokesperson, (604) 314-5589, http://www.independentjewishvoices.ca/

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INDEPENDENT JEWISH VOICES (CANADA)

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