Canada Jewish groups angered by pro-Palestine ad campaign

Jewish groups in Canada are considering suing Vancouver’s transportation network for accepting advertisements showing the “disappearance of Palestine due to Israeli occupation over the past 66 years.”

A Vancouver bus with a poster showing dated maps of how Palesitne is being occupied on August 28, 2013.

The Palestine Awareness Coalition announced on Tuesday the launch of a four-month pro-Palestinian campaign. 

As part of the campaign, TransLink has posted 15 bus posters and a large mural in a central SkyTrain station showing the land of Palestine steadily being occupied by the Israeli regime in a succession of dated maps. 

One coalition member, Marty Roth, said the campaign was a victory over groups that have tried to “suppress” the advertisements. 

In addition, Ruth said he believes the Israeli regime is unjustly oppressing the Palestinians and that they want to educate the Canadian public about the conflict. 

“This will be controversial with a number of traditional Jewish organizations that have tried to suppress the ads,” said Roth. “But TransLink has refused to agree with them, because these are educational ads that are well within national advertising guidelines and the Canadian Charter.”

Mitchell Gropper, a lawyer and a Jewish leader in Vancouver, said his group had argued with the “highest levels” of TransLink, asking for the Palestine advertisemente to be rejected, however the transportation network refused to stop the campaign. 

Meanwhile, many travelers, who saw the mural on Tuesday, stopped and took a picture of the advertisement, calling the campaign educative. 

One traveler, Mohammed Hamid said he was glad to see the mural was drawing attention from people walking by, and agreed that education was important. 

“Especially in Canada where, understandably, a lot of people aren’t familiar with the issue,” said Hamid.