Jewish women were arrested and later freed after a protest at the Israeli consulate in Toronto Wednesday afternoon. A spokeswoman for the group stated that they were treated fairly by the Toronto police force.
The RCMP arrested and handcuffed eight women who were staging a sit-in protest against the conflict on the Gaza Strip at the Israeli consulate in Toronto. They wanted it to be known that not all Jews are approving of the military action.
Judy Rebick, professor; Judith Deutsch, psychoanalyst and president of Science for Peace; B.H. Yael, filmmaker; Smadar Carmon, a Canadian Israeli peace activist and others were part of the protest. A group of more than thirty supporters were carrying signs outside of the consulate.
During a phone interview with Cathy Gulkin, spokeswoman for the group, she stated that she was not surprised with the arrests. She noted that it appeared that the RCMP did not appear to want to be there and were only doing their jobs. They asked the supporters to take two steps back to be off of the consulate property to avoid arrest. The group did as they were instructed so that the media would be able to have a voice. Those on the inside faced the same treatment from the Toronto police. That can not be said for the youngest member of the sit-in group who was pulled by Israeli security. She was not injured in that movement.
Ms. Gulkin said that the group wants it to be known that not all Jews are behind the Israeli mission on the Gaza Strip. She said that those having to live in Gaza are in the world’s largest open air prison.
“Not all Jews are for this and Israel does not represent all Jews.”
Ms. Gulkin also noted that the Jewish people who are against this military action are not getting the media voice nor support that they would like.
The women were released within one hour according to Gulkin and there were no charges issued over this incident.
The group does not more planned protests for the future.
On Saturday there will be a teach-in at the Jewish consulate for anyone who is interested.