Justin Trudeau Apologizes For Canada's Refusal to Admit Jews Fleeing Holocaust

Trudeau at German Holocaust Memorial

Trudeau issues apology for Canada's refusal to harbor Jews fleeing Holocaust

The luxury liner carrying almost 1,000 Jews hoping to escape Nazi persecution was refused permission to dock in Halifax in 1939.

But Mr. King said it was not Canada's problem and left the matter to officials such as Frederick Blair, the architect of Canada's restrictive immigration policies, known for his inflexibility.

In May 2016, six months after taking office, he stood in parliament to apologise to the descendents of hundreds of passengers of the Komagata Maru, a Japanese vessel carrying Sikh, Muslim and Hindu migrants who were refused entry into Canada under 1914 immigration laws.

"We 900 immigrants looking for safe haven were denied that and fortunately there are countries such as Canada who are willing to take those truly looking for safe haven and looking for a place to reside without being persecuted", Wiener said.

But anti-Semitism is not just a thing of the past in Canada as Trudeau said that some 17 percent of religious hate crimes victims in the country are against Jews.

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"While decades have passed since we turned our backs on Jewish refugees, time has by no means absolved Canada of its guilt or lessened the weight or our shame". More than half of them later died in concentration camps.

The ensuing days have seen countrywide vigils and, Trudeau said, calls for the government do to more through a federal program that funds security improvements at places at risk of hate-motivated crimes, such as synagogues.

"It was very important that the government made this statement and fulsome apology for the past", said Michael Mostyn, Chief Executive Officer of B'nai Brith Canada.

Gordon said she thinks history is repeating itself today, as "many people are discriminated against, starving or running for their lives".

While a majority of Canadians (63%) say they have followed the news of Jamal Khashoggi's murder, it does not appear to have an impact on views of the Saudi Arms deal. Of those Canada did let in, some 7,000 Jews were held as prisoners of war and jailed alongside Germans captured on battlefields, he said. The ship arrived in Cuba, which would not accept the refugees. "Anti-Semitism is still far too present". "Discrimination and violence against Jewish people in Canada and around the world continues at an alarming rate".

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