P.C. Candidate demands apology from Minister over "clearly racist" remarks

Markham-Unionville's Shan Thayaparan says MPP Michael Chan went "over the line of decency"

MARKHAM, ON, Feb. 27, 2014 /CNW/ - Markham-Unionville P.C. Candidate Shan Thayaparan today demanded an apology from the riding's MPP, Culture Minister Michael Chan, for what Thayaparan termed "clearly racist" remarks.

"I cannot believe that a Minister of Culture, who is supposed to support and strengthen our open society, would try to use religion and nationality to divide people and pit them against each other," said Thayaparan.

Chan is under fire for an interview in a Chinese language newspaper in which he allegedly accused Prime Minister Harper of favouring Jews over Chinese people. The Minister is also alleged to have called on Chinese-Canadians to vote against the Jewish P.C. candidate in Thornhill's recent by-election.

"Just because there was a political campaign underway does not excuse Mr. Chan from making these clearly racist remarks," stated Thayaparan, "The Minister is welcome to attack me, my party or anyone else on the facts and issues, but trying to set people against each other due to their ethnic origin is over the line of decency."

Thayaparan noted that his own community of Tamil people have immigrated to Canada to avoid just this kind of race-based politics.

"When you drive wedges between people based on where they were born or what they believe, you are laying the groundwork for resentment, distrust and eventual discrimination."

"Mr. Chan should be ashamed of himself," concluded Thayaparan, "He not only owes an apology to our Jewish and Chinese communities, he has disgraced himself and his government in the eyes of all Canadians who refuse to accept racism in politics."

SOURCE: Shan Thayaparan Campaign

For further information:

Glen Stone
Media Relations, Shan Thayaparan Campaign
905-946-6625  Ext:*5

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