Skip to content

Newmarket MP splits from party majority to call for ceasefire

Newmarket-Aurora MP Tony Van Bynen joins group of 33 MPs calling on government to urge ceasefire in Gaza
2021-09-13-Tony Van Bynen-JQ
Newmarket-Aurora Liberal candidate Tony Van Bynen.

Newmarket-Aurora MP Tony Van Bynen has broken from party ranks to join a group of MPs calling for a ceasefire in Israel and Palestine.

Van Bynen was one of 33 MPs, including 23 Liberals, to sign a letter calling for a ceasefire Oct. 20. The call comes amidst continued bombings from Israel into Gaza in retaliation for a deadly attack for Hamas Oct. 7. The federal government has not yet formally called for ceasefire. 

In a message in his regular newsletter Oct. 23, Van Bynen said Israel has a right to defend itself but said that action is needed to prevent civilian suffering in Gaza.

“In the name of humanity, we need to do all that we can to ensure more innocent civilians do not suffer – in Gaza – in Israel and throughout the world,” Van Bynen said.

The letter sent to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau calls for Canada to join international demand for a ceasefire and do everything in its power to open a humanitarian corridor for supplies to reach the Palestinian people. It also calls for Canada to stand up for international law.

“International law is clear that innocent civilians and all those not taking part in the fighting must on no account be attacked and must be spared and protected,” the letter said, adding Canada must remind all parties in the conflict about this.

Canada has already announced $50 million in humanitarian aid for Gaza. But Trudeau has fallen short of calling for a ceasefire to this point.

Van Bynen’s message to constituents also cited a report from Defence Minister Bill Blair that Ottawa has confidence Israel did not strike the al-Ahli Hospital in Gaza, and was more likely caused by an errant rocket fired from Gaza.

Still, Van Bynen said he hopes there is a road for peace.

“I hope no more innocent civilians suffer and those who want to leave can leave,” he said. “I pray for the release of hostages and I hope humanitarian aid finds its way quickly to those in need," he said.