PM Harper

I love how Harper refused their demand for an apology. He knows he was right.

Ottawa (AFP) – A Muslim organization on Monday sued Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his spokesman for libel for linking the group to Hamas, which Canada lists as a banned terrorist organization.

The National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM), which filed the claim in Ontario Superior Court, had asked the prime minister’s office in January to bar a rabbi accused of links to an American anti-Muslim “hate group” from Harper’s first official trip to Israel, the West Bank and Jordan.

Harper spokesman Jason MacDonald responded by saying: “We will not take seriously criticism from an organization with documented ties to a terrorist organization such as Hamas.”

The comment was made to a Canadian media outlet.

Hamas has been a banned group in Canada since 2002.

NCCM asked for a retraction and an apology, but none were forthcoming, prompting Monday’s lawsuit.

“This false accusation against the NCCM is of the most serious kind imaginable and was made in an attempt to discredit the NCCM and undermine its ability to conduct its public work,” NCCM executive director Ihsaan Gardee said in a statement.

The links are clear as day:

[T]he operating relationship between a Hamas front group called Islamic Association of Palestine, CAIR and CAIR-CAN is presented in the following chronology:

June 1994 – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) was established by three leaders of the Islamic Association of Palestine (IAP): Nihad Awad, Omar Ahmad and Rafeeq Jaber. The IAP was a front group for Hamas in the United States in the eighties and nineties. In a video archived by the Investigative Project on Terrorism, Nihad Awad expresses his support for Hamas at Barry University in 1994. In 2002, an American judge presiding the case Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development v. Ashcroft concluded that the « Islamic Association for Palestine (« IAP »), has acted in support of Hamas.”

1996 – Creation of “an informal network in Canada to work with the Washington-based CAIR

January 14, 1997 – CAIR-Montreal is added to the Quebec Registry of Enterprises

July 10, 2000 – Incorporation of CAIR-CAN with Industry Canada

December 29, 2000 – A CAIR-CAN press release issued in Washington provides the name of a US-based CAIR leader as contact to comment about a fire at a mosque in Canada. In this press release, CAIR-CAN is referred to as CAIR’s « office in Canada. »

August 31, 2001 – A US-based CAIR leader’s name is added as contact in a CAIR-CAN press release criticizing the Canada-based National Post. In this press release, CAIR-CAN is referred to as « the Canadian office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. »

October 10, 2002 – Washington-based CAIR files a trade-mark application for an exclusive use of its acronym CAIR in Canada. In the Canadian government’s database, the address of the applicant CAIR is the following:

453 New Jersey Avenue, South East
Washington, D.C. 20003
United States of America

2003 – In a Journalist’s Guide to Islam conceived by CAIR-CAN (p. 15), Washington-based CAIR is described as “CAIR-CAN’s parent organization” (p. 14).

December 16, 2003 – CAIR-CAN Chair Sheema Khan swears in an affidavit supporting Washington-based CAIR in a legal trade-mark battle that it “has direct control” over CAIR-CAN’s activities in Canada.

March 10, 2005 – A Canadian government agency confirms that, in Canada, the trade-mark on the acronym CAIR belongs to Washington-based CAIR.

August 14, 2007 – In a list of CAIR chapters, CAIR-CAN appears between CAIR-Ohio and CAIR-Central Pennsylvania.

Two CAIR-CAN leaders openly endorsed Hamas after it was listed a terrorist organization by the Liberal government in 2002.

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