Liberals court listed terrorist organization
In 2006 then Parliamentary Secretary Jason Kenney attended an Iranian pro-human rights rally in Ottawa and it was later reported that the rally was organized by the People’s Mujahedin Organization of Iran which has ties to the Mujahedin-e-Khalq (MEK) which is a listed terrorist group in Canada. This event was just after the resignation of Liberal MP Borys Wrzesnewskyj from foreign affairs critic for comments he had made about delisting Hezbollah as a terrorist organization. The Liberal Party was quick to point out that this was hypocrisy and by all reported accounts it probably was.
There is a difference however between appearing at a rally in Canada and traveling at the bequest of a terrorist organization – with all expenses paid.
Five Liberal members of Parliament say they did nothing wrong when they accepted an invitation from an Iranian opposition group on Canada’s terrorist list.
MPs Raymonde Folco, Carolyn Bennett, Rob Oliphant, Andrew Telegdi and Tom Wappel travelled to France at the invitation of Mojahedin e Khalq, or MEK, also known as the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran. The trips are detailed in travel reports submitted to the federal ethics commissioner for the years 2008 and 2009.
The groups’ tactics have led both Canada and the U.S. to deem it a terrorist organization.
According to Public Safety Canada’s website, which lists groups Canada has branded as terrorist organizations, MEK is based in Iraq, with the principal objective to overthrow the existing Iranian regime.
"To achieve their objectives, the MEK has used physical force, including armed attacks," the website says.
It was listed as a terrorist organization in 2005, when Liberal Paul Martin was prime minister.
In 2008, the European Union removed MEK from its terrorism watch list, and Canadian MPs have attended its Paris conferences for the past three years.
In travel reports filed by the MPs, the sponsor appears mostly as the Iran Democratic Association. But Folco does not deny who paid for her ticket and makes no apologies either.
"I was invited by MEK, the Mojahedin e Khalq," she said.
Folco said she knows the group is on Canada’s terrorism list.
Bennett admitted that meeting with the group and accepting free travel from it carries risks. But she also said Canada needs to take a second look at the terrorism listing.
"Sometimes we need to take risks," Bennett said. (CBC)
There has been talk by a number of countries about delisting the MEK especially after the Iraq war as it supplied intelligence on Iran but it doesn’t mean they are good however.
Private citizens could be expected to make the trip but sitting MP’s is disturbing. We’ve seen that the Liberal Party association with the Tamil Tigers lent credence to their cause and inadvertently was used in propaganda campaigns to show that Canadians were behind them. Same deal here, sitting MP’s representing Canada – what a public relations coup for the terrorists! And a free all expense paid trip for chosen Liberal MP’s.
Notably this has been taking place for the past three years but I am unable to find any other reports. Apparently, and I hate to say this but if the CBC hadn’t have done due diligence here on their investigation we probably would not have known about this trip either and for that we should be even more appalled. Not only are Canadian MP’s hanging with terrorists, but they are doing it all cloak and dagger.
Written by Darcey Saturday – metisonline.ca