HANSARD: Statement Calling on Immediately Special Immigration Measures to Facilitate Evacuation of Extended Family Members of Canadians and Permanent Residents of Gaza

House of Commons Hansard #258 of the 44th Parliament, 1st Session
Foreign Affairs
Statements by Members
November 29th, 2023 / 2:20 p.m.

Jenny Kwan Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, more than two million innocent lives remain trapped in Israel's siege of Gaza, trying to survive amid the most horrific and inhumane conditions. Thousands of children have been killed. As a mother, my heart aches for those families.

Survivors are being deprived of clean drinking water, food, medicine, sanitation, fuel and electricity. More than 1.7 million Palestinians are displaced from their homes in their ancestral homeland. Among them are people with disabilities, women, children, seniors and beloved family members of hundreds of people in Canada.

The Australian government has enacted special immigration measures, including a special visa program to prioritize visa assessment for those seeking to depart Gaza. Canada must do the same.

I am calling on the Liberals to immediately enact special immigration measures to facilitate the evacuation of extended family members of Canadians and permanent residents of Gaza, and I renew my call for a permanent ceasefire.

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HANSARD: Foreign Interference and Alleged Reputational Harm to Members of Parliament

Outside this chamber, just yesterday, there were individuals shouting, questioning and jeering about who the traitors may be. Members of Parliament had to walk past these individuals on the members' way to the House to do their work. I believe we must find a way to disclose which MPs are knowingly, intentionally, wittingly or semi-wittingly engaging with foreign states or their proxies to undermine Canada's democratic processes and institutions. I believe this can be done in a way that does not compromise national security.

If there are no consequences for MPs who knowingly help foreign governments act against Canadian interests, we will continue to be an easy target. This will further erode the trust and faith Canadians have in our democratic processes. If allowed to continue, it will further impugn the integrity of the House. Revealing any member of Parliament, former or present, who is a willing participant in foreign interference activities would have the effect of deterring this kind of behaviour. Moreover, it would send a clear message to those foreign states that this cannot continue and that they will not be able to continue to use parliamentarians in this way. This will further reassure the public of the integrity of the House.

I strongly believe that the House should refer the matter to the procedure and House affairs committee. A possible way to deal with the issue would be for committee members to undergo the necessary security screening to examine the unredacted report and look into the allegations about parliamentarians who were “‘witting or semi-witting’ participants in the efforts of foreign states to interfere in our politics.” We could allow the named parliamentarians to be informed and to come before the committee as witnesses; we could then explore options on how to disclose the named parliamentarians without compromising national security or police investigations of the matter.

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