From: izayid
To: Alexa McDonough, MP ; href="/cgi-common/webmail.cgi?cmd=url&xdata=~2-de4326fc8581e34e3e1b9122eb8389abf44d9ef0db00&url="> href="javascript:press_email('')">
Cc: ;
Sent: Friday, February 18, 2005 2:47 PM
Subject: "Peace in Palestine"

Canada Palestine Association,
P.O.Box, 1085,
Halifax, NS, B3J 2X1
Feb. 18, 2005
The Hon. Ms. Alexa McDonough, MP.
Dear Ms. McDonough:
We read, in the Halifax Herald, Feb.17, with extreme surprise, quotations of your statements related to your recent visit to the Middle East and the recent tragic terrorist action in Lebanon.
You are quoted as having said: " Peace in Palestine cannot be maintained unless Syria pulls back from both its open and clandestine activities." Do I need to remind you that the lack of peace in Palestine is a direct outcome of Israeli policies, including the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from their homeland, the illegal oppresive Israeli occupation of Palestinian land, associated with violation of virtually every article of the Fourth Geneva Convention including detention of thousands without charge or trial, torture, extra-judicial assassination, demolition of thousands of homes and expropriation of Palestinian territory for the creation of illegal Jewish settlents. All these acts are war crimes, as defined by international law.
You state: " I really felt Pettigrew showed a lot of diplomatic skill as well as a lot of guts, in having stated very strongly the case for the Syrian presence in Lebanon to recede if in fact, the real concern was for peace in Palestine and Israel." Mr. Pettigrew and the rest of our Canadian distinguished politicians  are calling aloud for Syria to comply with last year's Security Council resolution # 1553 and withdraw its troops from Lebanon. However, why did we not hear Mr. Pettigrew make the more relevant call in Israel to withdraw its troops from Palestinian, Syrian and Lebanese territory, that has been allowed to stand for over 37 years, in defiance of international law and repeated Security Council resolutions? Furthermore, whatever the merits, or otherwise, of the presence of Syrian troops in Lebanon, do I need to remind you that the presence of Syrian troops in Lebanon is at the invitation of the Lebanese government? Surely, it is for the elected Lebanese government, and not Messrs Bush, Chirac or Pettigrew, to decide whether the Syrian troops leave or stay in Lebanon. And do I need to remind all these distinguished politicians that the Israeli troops are uninvited in their illegal occupation of Palestinian or Syrian territory?
Finally, if you and our politicians truly care for peace and security in Palestine and Israel, you should use your guts to call on Israel to terminate completely, immediately and unconditionally its illegal occupation of Palestinian and Syrian territory. The call should also go to Israel to comply with scores of Security Council resolutions related to illegal Israeli annexation of East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights as well as scores of UN resolutions calling for the right of return for Palestinian refugees ethnically cleansed from their homeland by Israel. The call should also call on the US government to cease its unquestioning support for all the crimes and policies of Israel, which the US automatically vetoes.
I am also surprised to see that, in relation to the charges that Syria is responsible for the killing of Mr. Hariri, you state:" I don't think there's any doubt in anybody's mind." For you to make this statement is surprising, when, in fact, no one in the world knows who perpetrated this crime. Others have listed the major beneficiaries from this crime, but those must also be dismissed until the facts are obtained.
Yours sincerely,
Ismail Zayid, MD.
President, Canada Palestine Association.