Trudeau Government Quintuple Visas For Palestinian Refugees Amid Gaza Conflict

The Trudeau government has revealed plans to issue 5,000 temporary resident visas to Palestinian refugees fleeing Gaza, a significant increase from the 1,000 visas initially announced in December. The decision comes as the conflict in Gaza continues to escalate, with Canada expressing horror at a recent Israeli airstrike in Rafah that caused 45 deaths.

Immigration Minister Marc Miller said in a statement, “Many people are worried about their loved ones and have expressed significant interest in the temporary special measures we introduced for their extended family in Gaza. That is why, as part of our humanitarian response, we have increased the number of temporary resident visa applications that will be accepted into processing as part of these measures from 1,000 to 5,000.”

The move comes as neighboring Arab states, such as Egypt and Jordan, have been reluctant to take in Palestinian refugees. The Canadian government has assured that the refugees will be thoroughly vetted before being granted visas.

Foreign Minister Melanie Joly demanded an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, echoing global leaders who urged the implementation of a World Court order to halt Israel’s assault. The conflict began after Hamas-led militants attacked southern Israeli communities on Oct. 7, killing around 1,200 people and seizing more than 250 hostages. Nearly 36,000 Palestinians have been killed in Israel’s offensive, and an estimated 1.7 million people, more than 75% of Gaza’s population, have been displaced.