The statement below was released by Tar Sands Action on October 31. The group is seeking to stop the Keystone XL pipeline, built to transport oil from the Athabasca tar sands in north-east Alberta, Canada, to refineries in the United States. Mining the Athabasca tar sands is one of the most environmentally destructive practices on the planet. For more information, visit .

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Yesterday we got some of the strongest confirmation yet that efforts to stop the Keystone XL pipeline are having a long-term impact on the tar sands industry.

Independent and community media makers in Canada have passed a groundbreaking national motion to join the Palestinian-led call for boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel. 

In June, the National Campus and Community Radio Association of Canada (NCRA) ― an umbrella organisation representing more than 80 radio stations across Canada ― adopted the motion at its annual meeting.

NCRA said: “In doing so, the NCRA is proudly the first national media organization in Canada to join the global movement for BDS.”

The incumbent Conservative Party sailed to victory in Canada’s federal election on May 2 with the first majority government in the federal Parliament since the 2000 election.

There was celebration in the boardrooms across the country. The victory caps a decades-long drive by much of Canada’s business elite to fashion a strong national government around a hard-right agenda.

Federal elections were held in Canada on May 2 after the conservative government of Prime Minister Stephen Harper lost a motion of no-confidence in parliament. In the elections, Harper's government was returned -- winning enough extra seats to move from being minority government to a majority one.

Seventy-five people staged a noisy rally in Vancouver on September 11 in support of 492 Tamil asylum seekers who landed on Canada’s west coast in August. The rally was organised by the Vancouver chapter of No One Is Illegal.

The rally was held outside the Burnaby Youth Detention Center where many of the 63 women and 49 children who were on board the MV Sun Sea were held. (Burnaby is a suburb of Vancouver). Noisemakers and loud music were deployed to send a message to the asylum seekers that they have strong support in Canada for their claim for refugee status.

The Fabio Di Celmo Committee for the Five, (CFDCF) of Quebec-Cuba Solidarity, has been organising picket lines in front of the US Consulate in downtown Montreal the first Thursday of every month for more than three years in solidarity with the Cuban Five.

The five are Rene Gonzalez, Antonio Guerrero, Gerardo Hernandez, and Ramón Labanino and Fernando Gonzalez. They were arrested 12 years ago on September 12, sentenced to long prison terms and held in terrible penitentiary conditions.

Pacific Rim Mining held its annual general meeting in downtown Vancouver on August 28. It was attended by a few directors and more than a dozen protesters.

Most of the demonstrators were from the Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador (CISPES) in the US Pacific Northwest. They wore tags describing themselves as shareholders in democracy, human rights, access to clean water and “our future”.

Canwest News Service reported on July 6 that the Canadian parliament’s Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development had, at a secret June 17 meeting, abruptly cancelled a big report on the Alberta tar sands oil mining project and its impacts on water. The parliamentarians even destroyed draft copies of their final report.

After listening to testimony from scientists, bureaucrats, lobbyists, aboriginal chiefs and environmental groups, the committee dropped the whole affair like a bucket of tar. The Alberta provincial government refused to testify.

Canada & Israel: Building Apartheid
By Yves Engler
Fernwood Publishing/Red Publishing
Toronto, 2010, 168 pages.

Most Canadians today would probably agree that their country's foreign policy is pro-Israel. Even Canada's “liberal” supporters of Israel complain that siding so explicitly with Israel damages Canada's role of a peacemaker. It signals a shift away from the country's perceived balanced approach to the Arab-Israeli conflict.

A huge police crackdown on protesters at the June 26-27 G20 Summit in Toronto last week ended in the arrests of hundreds of primarily peaceful activists. Canadian group Socialist Project issued this statement on June 30 in solidarity with the protesters targeted by police. It is reprinted from The Bullet.

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The massive police presence in Toronto over this week has been officially justified on the basis of protecting the leaders of the G8 and G20 countries meeting in Huntsville and Toronto.


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