Toronto Star – November 21, 2011
This opinion piece by Payam Akhavan, Professor of International Law at McGill University, a former UN war crimes prosecutor, and founder of the Iran Human Rights Documentation Centre suggests that Canada is the haven of choice for the Islamic Republic’s inner circle.
He says it is ironic that while Ahmadinejad condemns “western imperialism,” his inner circle has quietly established itself in Canada to enjoy ill-gotten fortunes with impunity. A recent example is the former head of Iran’s Melli and Sepah Banks, Mahmoud Reza Khavari, who acquired Canadian citizenship under questionable circumstances and then fled this October to his multi-million-dollar Toronto mansion following a $2.6 billion embezzlement scandal in Iran. Akhavan suggests that their presence may benefit the economy, but is clearly a security threat.
The Toronto Star – November 2, 2011
A group of Muslim restaurant franchisees is fighting fast-food chain Popeyes Louisiana Chicken in court over the right to sell hand-slaughtered Halal meat for religious reasons. The battle in Ontario Superior Court comes after the Atlanta-based franchise moved to replace the chicken supply with machine-killed birds in 14 Toronto restaurants. The company says it’s still Halal-certified; the franchisees claim the machine method is against the beliefs of a majority of Muslims.
Abdul Haffejee, who owns eight Popeyes in the GTA says that between 50 and 80 per cent of his customers are Muslim. For over 25 years, Popeyes sold hand-slaughtered Halal meat in all of its 59 southern Ontario stores, according to court documents. This occurred without major incident until January this year, when the long-time supplier announced it would be getting out of the hand-slaughtered chicken business because it was moving on to larger birds, an industry trend.
The Toronto Star – November 15, 2010
The Qurbani Project, an initiative of the Toronto chapter of the Muslim Association of Canada, aims to distribute 1,360 kg of meat to as many as 300 GTA families for Eid al-Adha — many of whom may not eat meat at all because they cannot afford it. Up to 30 volunteers from MAC and from multifaith and Muslim groups at U of T will help distribute halal beef and mutton through the Scadding Court community centre on the weekend. They will also help provide lunch for families receiving donations.
Meanwhile, thousands of Muslims will celebrate by attending the 25th annual Eid Festival Tuesday at Exhibition Place. Following a sermon and prayers at 10 a.m., the festivities will include a bazaar, rides, a petting zoo, shows, sports and meals throughout the day. It’s also an occasion for MAC to reach out to help not just Muslims, but everyone across the GTA, with a food drive and other programs.
The Toronto Star – November 19, 2010
“One would expect Muslims to denounce the depiction of their Prophet as a mass murderer,” Fatah writes in The Jew Is Not My Enemy: Unveiling the Myths that Fuel Anti-Semitism (272 pages, McClelland & Stewart , 2010). Fatah calls himself a secular Muslim and ranks as one of Canada’s most fearless critics of Islamism — the ideology that promotes Islam as a political system as well as a religion. Two years ago, he published Chasing a Mirage: The Tragic Illusion of an Islamic State arguing that when Muslims buried the Prophet they also buried many of his values.The problem, the author says, is that Islam lacks a tradition of questioning religious texts.