Jewish organizations react to a judge denying McGill’s initial request to remove an encampment as the trend spreads to other university campuses in Montreal

Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs: We take note of today's decision of the Superior Court concerning @mcgill 's request to dismantle the encampment on its private land. CIJA's position remains the same: this encampment is illegal and is a source of hatred, anti-Semitism and glorification of terrorism. In light of the numerous examples already documented, and the new ones coming from the occupation of the @UQAM , it is clear that these demonstrators are "peaceful" only in name...

A superior court in Quebec has denied an injunction filed by McGill University that would have ordered the removal of a pro-Palestinian encampment that has been occupying its downtown Montreal campus since April 27.

Justice Marc St-Pierre said in his decision that the university failed to justify the urgent need to dismantle the camp and failed to prove that it is causing serious or irreparable harm. The judge is allowing the plaintiffs to produce a modified request for an injunction within the next 10 days.

University lawyers argued that the unauthorized fortress of tents posed a threat to public safety and prevented the university from holding its commencement ceremony among other activities on its own property.

“We take note of the decision rendered today by the Superior Court. We will take the time to analyze it. Our position remains the same and we support McGill’s request,” reads part of a statement from Quebec public security minister François Bonnardel.

“We are willing to dismantle if the McGill administration takes our demands seriously,” encampment organizers said in a press conference, implying they would remain on site into the summer.

Protesters are demanding that McGill and Concordia University disclose and divest from all investments in Israeli companies, sever ties with Israeli organizations and grant amnesty to all protest participants, as well as make a public statement condemning what they describe as an ongoing genocide in Gaza.

On May 13, another pro-Palestine encampment began at Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) in solidarity with McGill’s demonstrators.

Another one sprung up at the Université de Sherbrooke earlier this week.

B’nai Brith Canada issued a statement about how the organization was “gravely concerned by the precedent” by the ruling that denied McGill’s request.

“The encampment at McGill, and those existing on campuses across the country, present a demonstrable threat to the wellbeing of university communities across Canada. They have shown themselves to be sources of intimidation, incitement, and contrary to Canadian values. We remain committed to doing everything in our power to defend our students and take back our campuses.”

On its French-language social media account, the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs also reaffirmed its position on the encampment trend in Quebec: “It is clear that these demonstrators are ‘peaceful’ only in name.”