Prince Albert Daily Herald, Thursday, January 8, 2009
Orchard joins call for ceasefire
by Angela Hill
David Orchard joins a panel of prominent Canadians in
Toronto today in a plea to the Canadian government to
call for an end to the current violence in the Middle
"I want to see them join most of the rest of the
world, the Europeans and others in calling for an
immediate ceasefire," said Orchard.
"The United States had derailed a call for ceasefire
at the UN Security Council and our government is backing
that. By doing that we are essentially giving a green
light for the killing to go on."
Orchard will be one of five prominent Canadians
participating in a media conference, which will address
the humanitarian catastrophe under the bombs, the lack
of action by the Canadian government, and will call for
an immediate ceasefire and a lifting of the blockade of
According to Orchard there have to be voices speaking
out against the current situation and saying that we
don't agree with out government. The alternative,
silence, suggests complicity, he said.
Anton Kuerti, a world-renowned Canadian concert
pianist and human rights activist, will be speaking with
In a recent letter to the Globe and Mail he said,
"Israel's behaviour makes me ashamed of being a Jew, and
our government's implicit endorsement of these crimes
makes me ashamed to be a Canadian."
Many members of the Jewish community in Canada are
speaking out. Wednesday saw a group of Jewish women
staging a protest at the Israeli consulate.
Orchard has spoken at several rallies including
calling for a ceasefire on Dec. 28.
"The targets — the mosques, the schools — these
things are absolutely unacceptable targets and I just
felt that I had to speak out," he said.
"We are seeing a heavily armed group attacking a
largely defenceless refugee population," Orchard said,
adding that 80% of the population of Gaza are refugees.
"These are civilians that can't get out... it's like
they are in a prison and now they are being bombed," he
said. "I want the killing to stop and there needs to be
a ceasefire yesterday."