For immediate release:
Montreal community condemn Canadian government’s inaction in supporting Bissan Eid’s struggle to return home
Montreal, June 15, 2017- Dozens of Montreal community members gathered today in front of Concordia University in solidarity with Bissan to demand that Justin Trudeau and the Canadian government support Bissan Eid and facilitate her return home. A Concordia student and a new mother, Bissan has been trapped in the Palestinian territory of Gaza, unable to return home for over half a year. The crowd denounced the Canadian government’s failure to act in protection of Bissan and her daughter Sarah. The inaction of Canadian government points to discrimination against two Canadian citizens based on their place of birth. "By creating red tape when dire emergency calls for expediency, the Canadian representative office in Ramallah is discriminating against Bissan," said Elena Razlogova, Associate Professor in the Department of History at Concordia University.
Since January, Bissan has been prevented from leaving the Palestinian territory of Gaza due to the Israeli authorities’ refusal to process her exit using her Canadian passport, and the unreasonably slow processing of her exit visa. This violation of Bissan’s right to freedom of movement has not only forced her to give birth within the besieged territory of Gaza – far away from her immediate family and adequate medical facilities – but it has also obstructed her completion of a Master’s degree in Civil Engineering at Concordia. “Gaza has been subject to recurrent bombings, and this includes bombings that have occurred since the time that Bissan arrived there. This is an ordeal that no Canadian – or Palestinian – should have to endure,” said Norma Rantisi, Professor of Geography, Planning and Environment at Concordia University.
Participants at the rally and passers-by signed hundreds of postcards and letters addressed to their Members of Parliament and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Chrystia Freeland. “We are committed to supporting Bissan in her struggle to return home and will continue to mobilize our communities until Bissan and her baby Sarah are back home in Montreal,” said Omar Riaz, General Coordinator of the Concordia Student Union.
Community members present at the support rally urged the Trudeau government to take immediate action to do everything necessary to #BringBissanHome.
For more information, contact:
Stefan Christoff 438-936-1948 (Tadamon!)
Concordia Student Union