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Death threats received

by Archives September 12, 2001
On Aug. 25, the Concordia Student Union (CSU) received a threatening message from the Committee for the Elimination of Palestine (CEP), saying “everyone who is part of the CSU is now a target.”
“This was not an isolated event,” said CSU President Sabrina Stea at a press conference on Sept. 10. “Other threats have been expressed to teachers and members of teachers’ families.” She added that all those who were threatened had voiced their pro-Palestinian human rights positions before.
In March 2001, the CSU held a referendum. One referendum question asked students whether the CSU should call on the Canadian governmnet to put pressure on the Israeli government to respect international laws, especially those on human rights laws. The question also said the pressure should include cutting diplomatic and economic ties with Israel. About 10 per cent of the student population voted and a majority of the voters agreed to the question.
“Part of the Concordia administration made allegations that the CSU had been infiltrated by Arabs,” said Stea in an interview, “but this is just not true. There are Arabic members of the executive as there are members of other communities.”
Members of the student union suspect that the CEP is a Zionist extremist organisation. The Zionists are a Judaic movement bound on uniting the Jewish people of the Diaspora or the exile, in order to settle them in Palestine.
“A Zionist group is the only conclusion we can come to,” said Zev Tiefenbach, a CSU member, who spoke at the press conference on Sept. 10. “No prankster would go to these lengths.”
The Montreal Urban Community (MUC) Police was notified as soon as the threats were received, and an investigation was opened. The dean of students, Donald Boisvert, wrote a letter to Stea saying it was the right course of action. However, the administration did not join the CSU at the conference.
“It is a pity,” wrote Stea in a press release, “that the administration was not able to set aside its political opposition to the CSU and accept our offer to make a joint statement at this press conference. I am sure that such a move would have done a great deal to assuage the fears of the students who are being threatened by the CEP.”

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