TORONTO (JTA) — Canada is poised to review federal funding to the country’s largest Arab group after its president called a Cabinet minister a "professional whore" for supporting Israel.
Jason Kenney, the Canadian minister of immigration, said he is considering slashing funding to the Canadian Arab Federation, which this year received nearly $450,000 from Kenney’s ministry to operate a settlement program in Toronto, teaching new immigrants language and job search skills.
Kenney, in London to address the Inter-Parliamentary Commission for Combating Anti-Semitism, said he has asked his department to weigh comments made by Khaled Mouammar before the next round of funding applications in 2010.
When Kenney called on the Arab federation to condemn the anti-Semitism of some Canadian protesters at recent anti-Israel rallies, Mouammar referred to him as a "professional whore," allegedly referring to his support of Israel’s fight against terrorism.
"We should not be rewarding those who express views that are contrary to Canada’s best liberal values of tolerance and mutual respect," Kenney told the Sun media chain.
B’nai Brith Canada applauded Kenney for his stance. So did the Canadian Jewish Congress, which has tallied other controversial statements attributed to Mouammar.
Mouammar charged that the federal government is "anti-Arab and anti-Muslim."