The displacement of Palestinian civilians in Gaza due to the ongoing war with Israel could lead to millions of refugees, which Israel suggested a large portion could be sent to Canada.
The Israeli Intelligence Ministry floated a plan in a “concept paper,” which said Canada would be an ideal candidate for Palestinian refugees due to PM Justin Trudeau’s “lenient” immigration policy.
According to talk on Parliament Hill, the number of refugees that could be headed for Canada could be as high as 500,000.
Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Minister Marc Miller strongly suggested Canada would be quite prepared to accept the shipment of refugees.
While discussing his 2024-2026 Immigration Levels Plan, a reporter asked Miller about the proposals.
Miller did not dismiss the question; instead, he wasn’t prepared to “speculate” on the prospect of accepting the refugees.
He then reaffirmed Canada’s commitment to accept refugees during times of crisis.
“We are open to those fleeing war. This is a war,” he said.
"We are open to those fleeing war. This is a war."— Harrison Faulkner (@Harry__Faulkner) October 31, 2023
Immigration Minister Marc Miller is asked about the Israeli government paper which floats the idea of Canada taking refugees from Gaza and Miller says Canada is open to those fleeing war. pic.twitter.com/mFiWSFoRXt
If Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s infamous social media post from 2017 is anything to go by, then it looks like Canada will be a top destination for Palestinian refugees.
Trudeau wrote at the time:
“To those fleeing persecution, terror & war, Canadians will welcome you, regardless of your faith. Diversity is our strength #WelcomeToCanada.”
To those fleeing persecution, terror & war, Canadians will welcome you, regardless of your faith. Diversity is our strength #WelcomeToCanada— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) January 28, 2017
The document notes that the proposal “is liable to be complicated in terms of international legitimacy,”
“In our assessment, fighting after the population is evacuated would lead to fewer civilian casualties compared to what could be expected if the population were to remain.”
However the Palestinian Authority has rejected the idea.
Nabil Abu Rudeineh, spokesman for Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, said:
“We are against transfer to any place, in any form, and we consider it a red line that we will not allow to be crossed.”
“What happened in 1948 will not be allowed to happen again.”
Meanwhile, the US could be set to take millions of Palestinian refugees.
Last month, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez suggested that Americans must be ready to accept Palestinian refugees into their communities.
“I think there’s something to be said about the region’s partners being able to support and step up for Palestinians.”
“However, that does not abdicate the United States from the historic role that we’ve played in the world of accepting refugees and allowing people to restart their lives here.”
Around 1 million Palestinians are estimated to have been displaced in the Gaza Strip even before Israel initiated their expected ground invasion.
“Fifty percent of the population in Gaza are children,” ‘squad’ member Jamaal Bowman said, who called on America to accept more refugees.
“The international community as well as the United States should be prepared to welcome refugees from Palestine while being very careful to vet and not allow members of Hamas.”
Approximately 57% of Gaza Strip residents maintain an opinion of Hamas that is at least somewhat positive, the Washington Institute reported.