Canadian Muslim Public Affairs Council (CMPAC) Calls for Carleton University to Uphold Freedom of Expression After Its Cancellation of a Palestine Advocacy EventWritten by Canadian Muslim Public Affairs Council
Thursday, February, 8th – London, ON – The Canadian Muslim Public Affairs Council (CMPAC), in collaboration with Muslim Student Associations (MSAs) across Canada, organized a series of Palestine advocacy solidarity events featuring Sami Hamdi from February 9th to 12th.
Sami Hamdi serves as the Managing Director of the International Interest, a prominent company specializing in global risk and intelligence analysis. He is renowned for his expertise in international affairs, frequently contributing as a commentator at conferences and on major media platforms such as Al Jazeera (both Arabic and English), Sky News, BBC, and TRT World, among others. His tour across Canada aims to highlight critical issues related to Palestine solidarity, fostering informed discussions and educational opportunities for students and the broader community.
Regrettably, the Director of Student Affairs and Student Life, at Carleton University, has unexpectedly canceled the scheduled event at their institution, citing procedural irregularities and incomplete submissions, despite prior approvals. [The event has been relocated to the Hall of Peace, click here for details] This eleventh-hour cancellation has sparked significant concern and disappointment among students and community members. This decision, influenced by pressure from groups exhibiting anti-Palestinian sentiments, represents a concerning attempt to suppress freedom of speech.
CMPAC has unequivocally affirmed its dedication to the principles outlined in its Event Disclaimer, accessible on our website. This includes a commitment to fostering peaceful dialogue, maintaining respectful discourse, and encouraging active civic engagement within the community.
Considerable effort and planning have gone into organizing this event series, with a strong emphasis on community considerations. Our team and the MSAs have adhered strictly to the respective institutional guidelines. Carleton University’s decision represents a concerning pattern of bias against Pro-Palestinian perspectives in Canada and discriminates against the Muslim and Pro-Palestinian student body, which forms a significant segment of the university’s community.
The need for education on advocacy, particularly in the context of Palestine, is increasingly pertinent at Carleton University to address its biased stance toward the event. It is crucial for academic institutions to champion the values of free speech and academic freedom. Carleton University’s actions severely compromise these core principles.
We strongly condemn Carleton University’s actions and urge members of the community to stand in solidarity with us as we continue to fight against discrimination and censorship in all its forms. We demand an apology from Carleton University and a formal review of their policies that limit freedom of expression and allow for discrimination against our Muslim and Palestinian communities.