OTTAWA (Oct. 23)
The Canadian government has rejected a request by Rabbi Meir Kahane to come to Canada this month. The founder and former leader of the Jewish Defense League,who is now a member of the Knesset representing the Kach Party he founded in Israel, filed a visa application at the Canadian Consulate in Tel Aviv last week to visit Montreal and Toronto October 31 and November 1-2.
Len Westerberg of the Canadian Immigration Department said,”We felt his presence in Canada would be of no great benefit other than inflaming tensions between the Jewish and Arab communities.”
Walter McLean, Minister of State for Immigration, rejected Kahane’s application Monday because the rabbi was convicted of possession of explosives in New York City on July 23, 1971. He was deported from Canada later in 1971 as well as in 1981.
Because of his conviction, Kahane must obtain ministerial approval to enter Canada,and the government’s decision cannot be appealed. Mel Ostroff, a representative of the Jewish Defense League in Montreal, described the government decision as “grossly unfair.”