Saturday, November 14, 2009

Goldstone Commission Member to Speak at Law Faculty

The Arab Law Students Association of McGill and the McGill Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism are happy to invite you to a lecture by Hina Jilani, leading human rights lawyer and Member of the Goldstone Commission:

“The Promise of International Law for Civilian Victims of War: The Goldstone Report”

*Date and time: Wednesday 25 November 2009, 6.00pm.
*Venue: Moot Court (Room 100), 3644 Peel Street, New Chancellor Day Hall, McGill Faculty of Law.
*Information: Tel. 514-582-4391/ E-mail:

Ms. Hina Jilani is Advocate of the Supreme Court of Pakistan and was the Special Representative of the Secretary General on Human Rights Defenders from 2000 to 2008. She has fought for human rights for over 30 years, especially in the areas of the rights of women, minorities, children and prisoners. She is internationally recognized for her expertise in critical human rights investigations.

Ms. Jilani will provide a first-hand account of the Gaza Mission, its methodology, and the challenges it faced in carrying out its mandate. She will address the Mission’s findings of violations of international humanitarian and human rights law by Israeli and Palestinian parties, and the potential of international law to ensure accountability for victims of the conflict.

This lecture aims to promote an understanding of the context, contribution, and significance of the Goldstone Report, an unprecedented legal document in the history of the region that is rapidly gaining international attention through endorsement by the Human Rights Council and the UN General Assembly.

Please join the ALSA and the Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism for Ms. Hina Jilani’s lecture. A question and answer period will follow.

Friday, February 20, 2009



Presented by the Arab Law Students' Association and the Muslim Law Students' Association

(1) March 4: "SHARI'AH AND MODERNITY", with Professors Wael Hallaq and Khaled Medani. 6.00pm-8.00pm

Reception will be hosted. Refreshments will be served.

Dr. Wael Hallaq is the James McGill Professor of Islamic Law and one of the world's leading scholar in jurisprudence and Islamic legal thought. Dr. Khaled Medani is an associate professor of political science and Islamic studies at McGill.

(2) March 9: "SHARI'AH AND THE ENVIRONMENT", with Professor Richard Foltz. 6.00pm-8.00pm.

Dr. Richard Foltz is historian of comparative religious traditions. He has helped shape a new subfield combining religious studies with environmental ethics.

(3) March 10: "ISLAMIC FINANCE: A RESPONSE TO THE ECONOMICS CRISIS", with Professor Mohammad Fadel and Mr. Isam Salah. 5.00pm-7.00pm.

Dr. Mohammad Fadel is professor of law at the University of Toronto and Canada Research Chair in Law and Economics of Islamic Law.
Mr. Isam Salah in a Partner at New York & Dubai offices of King & Spalding LLP where he heads the firm's Islamic Finance & Investment practice.

All events will be held in the Moot Court.
For more information, please contact Website - Website -

Monday, November 24, 2008

Lives at risk from Gaza fuel cuts

'Lives at risk' from Gaza fuel cuts

Shifa hospital is being forced to run incubators off old generators amid the power outages [AFP]

Patients at the largest hospital in the Gaza Strip could die if Israel continues to prevent fuel and essential supplies to the territory, doctors have told Al Jazeera.

Shifa hospital in Gaza City is using a faulty generator to operate essential equipment since Gaza's main power plant restricted supplies due to a lack of fuel from Israel.

"Officials both here at the hospital and from the Red Cross describe the situation as critical," Ayman Mohyeldin, Al Jazeera's correspondent in Gaza, said.

"Almost every part of the intensive care unit runs on electricity which comes from Gaza's main power plant ... that plant is run on fuel from Israel, but no supplies have reached the plant for well over a week now."

Hassan Khalaf, director of Shifa hospital, said the intensive care unit could be rendered useless and lives were being put at risk.

"These patients are directly threatened," he said. "The first threat they face because of the power cut is their low temperature and the lack of oxygen."

In video

Gazans feel blockade pinch

One dialysis patient told Al Jazeera: "I am a kidney failure patient. When a power cut takes place, all dialysis machines stop. We will then suffer from blood clots."

Israel closed all of its crossings with Gaza on November 5, citing rocket attacks from Palestinian fighters inside Gaza.

Lives threatened

Al Jazeera's Sherine Tadros reporting from Gaza, said: "We heard from Israeli officials that around 40 trucks would be allowed into the Gaza Strip, about 10 of those would go straight to the UN camps ... all the trucks will contain humanitarian aid, but no fuel as of yet has reached Gaza.

"The trucks will only be enough to last for about one more week and criticism of aid agencies here is that Israel continues to trickle in the goods and never brings in enough. It's literally a day-by-day existence."

Frequent power cuts stall the treatment needed for kidney patients [AFP]
Although electricity is still being supplied to Gaza by Israel and Egypt, it is not enough to prevent regular power cuts.

On Saturday, doctors at Shifa hospital had to abandon using electronic equipment in the newborn baby unit when there was a power failure, Mohyeldin reported.

"When there was a power cut, the generator kicked in, but it had a problem," he said.

"As a result, all the machines shut down and staff had to manually pump oxygen to all the infants here."

Stocks of about 160 essential medicines have run out, while about 120 other healthcare drugs are running low, the hospital has said.

"It is indispensable to have all the supplies because we cannot continue working manually for a long period. Yesterday we had to transport oxygen cylinders to the beds," Radwan Hasoun, a manager of Shifa's intensive care unit, said.

"We want the frontiers opened and the siege to be lifted, so we can participate in the progress of the world like other people."

UN aid shortages

The delivery of United Nations aid to nearly two-thirds of Gaza's 1.5 million people has also been severely affected by the blockade.

The UN has said that it only has enough supplies in Gaza to last a few more days, unless the Israeli restrictions on the territory are lifted.

Amid the closures, Israeli army forces have launched several raids into Gaza, killing more than a dozen Palestinians.

Several Israelis have been injured by rockets fired by Palestinian fighters into Israel in recent days.

Israel and Palestinian Hamas, which has de facto control of the Gaza Strip, have observed a shaky ceasefire deal since July but the agreement is due to expire next month.

Israel is holding a US-backed peace dialogue with the Palestinian Authority, which is led by Mahmoud Abbas, Palestinian president and leader of the rival Fatah faction.

Hamas, deemed a "terrorist" organisation by Israel, is not a party to the negotiations.

Source: Al Jazeera and agencies

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Festival du Monde Arabe de Montréal

This year's Festival du Monde Arabe de Montréal starts next Wednesday (Oct. 29) and runs until Nov. 14.

Le FMA puise volontairement sa vision et son contenu dans la zone très riche, très dense et très stimulante de la dualité Occident / Monde arabe. Il se veut une plate-forme pour une dynamique de reconnaissance et d’écoute placée sous le signe du sérieux, du courage et du véritable engagement. Cela ne saurait toutefois se faire que dans l’inclusion et le partage. De par son cosmopolitisme, Montréal est aujourd’hui peut-être l’unique cadre pour une ouverture vers une culture arabe qui, aujourd’hui plus que jamais, se prête au renouvellement. Dans cet espace, où cette culture est reçue en invitée et non en intruse, étrangère ou même menaçante, s’insère le Festival du Monde Arabe de Montréal.Inspirée des Avicenne, Averroès, Maïmonides, Léon l’Africain et les tenants de l’École du Mahjar, ou encore LaMartine, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Monge et Laplace, son équipe croit profondément que l’utopie de la rencontre est à la fois exercice de citoyenneté et stimulant de créativité. Conçu et produit par Alchimies, Créations et Cultures, Le Festival du Monde Arabe de Montréal est un événement multidisciplinaire dédié à la rencontre et au dialogue des cultures. Il répond à un besoin essentiel chez le public en Amérique du Nord de découvrir, ou redécouvrir, de vivre et de dialoguer avec une composante culturelle majeure de notre époque. Dans leur recherche de formes artistiques innovatrices et contemporaines, les créateurs et artistes du FMA puisent dans une vaste culture, partagée par des centaines de millions de personnes, de toutes les origines et les religions, dans les quatre coins du monde. Une culture qui se prête, aujourd’hui plus que jamais, à un renouvellement dans la créativité. Le FMA s’ouvre à tous les artistes, provenant de tous les horizons culturels, aux autres diffuseurs et producteurs, pour créer un haut lieu de rencontre et d’échange et donner aux festivaliers un large éventail de choix d’activités de qualité.

For tickets and a calendar of events, visit

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Panel with Mr. Mark Arnold, Canadian Lawyer for the Palestinian Village of Bil'in


Panel with Mr. Mark Arnold, Canadian Lawyer for the Palestinian Village of Bil'in
MONTREAL Friday, Sept. 26, 2008, 7:30PM McGill University, New Chancellor Day Hall 
Room 100, 3644 Peel St., Montréal, Quebec

The Arab Law Student's Association of McGill (ALSA McGill) is hosting a Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME) organization event this upcoming Friday the 26th of September, at 7:30pm in New Chancellor Day Hall 
Room 100, 3644 Peel St., Montréal, Quebec.

In July, 2008, the Palestinian Village of Bil'in launched a lawsuit in Quebec Superior Court against two Montreal companies: Green Mount International Inc. and Green Park International Inc. The two companies are accused of building condominiums on Palestinian land under Israeli military occupation: actions that are strictly illegal under international, Canadian and Quebec law. This unprecedented case will go before the Court later this Fall.

Join us for a dynamic panel discussion with the Canadian lawyer for Bil'in Village, Mr. Mark Arnold, and other distinguished panellists as we explore the case and its implications for Canada, Israel and the Palestinians. Attendees at each event will be given the opportunity to donate to the legal fund of Bil'in Village, should they so choose.

An admission of $5 will be charged by CJPME to cover the costs of hosting the event series.


Mr. Mark Arnold. A veteran Toronto-based lawyer representing Bil'in in its
lawsuit, Mr. Arnold has brought other important cases testing international
law before the Canadian courts

Mr. Michael Lynk. A professor of law at the University of Western Ontario in
London, Mr. Lynk has published on issues of international law in the Middle
East, as well as human rights and labour law.

Mr. Steve Hibbard. A 20-year veteran of Canada's department of Foreign
Affairs, Mr. Hibbard served extensively in the Middle East during postings in
Cairo, Tel Aviv, and Ramallah.

Mr. Adam Hanieh. A doctoral candidate in political science at York University
focusing on the political economy of the Middle East, Mr. Hanieh also served
for several years as a researcher for Defence for Children International -
Palestine Section. Mr. Hanieh is also a researcher and activist with CAIA.

Mr. Thomas Woodley. President of CJPME with a background in public affairs
and policy analysis, Mr. Woodley has helped develop much of CJPME's policy
material on the Middle East over the past several years.

Ms. Shourideh Molavi. A law student at Osgoode Hall Law School, with a
background in political science and international relations, Ms. Molavi has
worked closely with Israeli and Palestinian NGOs like the ICAHD and Mada al-
Carmel who have been actively supporting the Bil'in Village cause.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Ramadan Mubarak!

May this month be generous in its blessings to you and all your loved ones... Ramadan Kareem...

ALSA McGill Executive

Friday, August 29, 2008

ALSA McGill 2008-2009!!!

Hope you all had a restful and fruitful summer! Get in touch with us at if you want to get actively involved with the Arab Law Students Association of McGill this semester or if you are a new or exchange student who needs any support or information in getting acquainted to McGill law school.

Good Luck with the New Academic Year & See you soon in Club’s Day !

ALSA McGill Executive

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


The Arab Law Students Association of McGill (ALSA McGill) in participation with Ogilvy Renault, will be organizing a conference on March 3rd, 2008 focusing on the changing face of the economy in the Gulf. The speaker series will have two main emphases: The first will accent the different incentives Gulf countries are putting in place to attract foreign investments. These include, among other things, the establishment of trading platforms, the creation of themed economic cities, the implementation of tax benefits and the development of new laws, such as strict Intellectual Protection, all of which are inviting new investments. The second will examine the increasing investment by both private and public Gulf firms in the North American markets. Ultimately we aim to present a better picture of the long-term prospects of investment in the Gulf and in Gulf-based companies.

I - Speakers Confirmed ( UPDATED )

1) Mr. Rehan Huda,
Co-Founder and Director,
Amana Canada Holdings Inc.
(FOCUS: Islamic Economics and Finance)

Rehan Huda is a Co-Founder and Director of Amana Canada Holdings, which is in
the process of structuring Shariah compliant financial products for the
Canadian marketplace. Mr. Huda has been a guest speaker on Islamic Economics
and Finance in a variety of forums in Canada, UK and the Middle East. On
Februray 27, 2008 he along with two partners from Ogilvy Renault were the
featured speakers at the Law Society of Upper Canada's seminar on Islamic
Finance and the possiblities for Canadian law firms in this field. Over 160
lawyers and financial professionals from across Canada participated in this
groundbreaking seminar.

2) Rose Sager: Bahrain Trade Representative in New York (Will Focus on the Bahrain-US trade agreement.)

Read more about the first Gulf Free trade agreement with the US at:

3) Mohammad Nsour - Doctoral Candidate in the McGill Law Faculty. Will Address the feasibility of a free trade agreement in the Middle East

4) Prof. Armand de Mestral - Prof of International trade law at the McGill Law Faculty will also be participating in the event!

Prof. de Mestral Bio:

Moot Court (room 100)
Faculty of Law
Chancellor Day Hall, 3644 Peel Street
Montreal, Quebec H3A 1W9

Time: Starting at 5pm (to be followed by a cocktail)


Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Dubai Green City?

Abu Dhabi has started to build what it says is the world's first zero-carbon, zero-waste car-free city. Masdar City will cost $22bn (£11.3bn), take eight years to build and be home to 50,000 people and 1,500 businesses.

The city will be mostly powered by solar energy and residents will move in travel pods running on magnetic tracks.

Abu Dhabi has one of the world's biggest per capita carbon footprints and sceptics fear Masdar may be just a fig leaf for the oil-rich Gulf emirate.

Others fear Masdar City - on the outskirts of Abu Dhabi City - may become a luxury development for the rich.

The project is supported by global conservation charity, the WWF.


Complete Article at:

Thursday, February 07, 2008

The Jewish and Muslim Legal Systems in Canada?


The Arab Law Students Association of McGill (ALSA McGill) and the Jewish Law Students Association (JLSA) are hosting their first joint event this upcoming Monday:

The Jewish and Muslim Legal Systems in Canada?:

A Round Table Discussion with Prof/Rabbi Ira Robinson and Lynda Clarke of Concordia University's Department of Religious Studies

Monday, February 11th from 5:00-6:30pm in Room 201 in NCDH

Faculty of Law
Chancellor Day Hall, 3644 Peel Street
Montreal, Quebec H3A 1W9

Email us @ for brief background reading prior to the discussion which will help start a constructive Q&A with the professors.

* Light refreshments will be served

Friday, January 11, 2008

Middle East News - Share your reactions...

Comment on any of the stories and link other articles

Monday, November 19, 2007

Homes in illegal Israeli settlements for sale at London expo

Haroon Siddique
Friday November 16, 2007
Guardian Unlimited

Israeli companies are using UK property shows to sell housing in illegal Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank, Guardian Unlimited can reveal.

At the Israel Property Exhibition at Brent town hall, North London last Sunday, one company, Anglo-Saxon Real Estate, was offering for sale properties in Maale Adumim and Maccabim. Both West Bank settlements lie on the Palestinian side of the so-called green line, the pre-1967 boundary and often cited as the border between Israel and a future Palestinian state.

The Israeli prime minister, Ehud Olmert, and his Palestinian counterpart, Mahmoud Abbas, are expected to meet before the end of the year in Annapolis, in the US, for peace talks that have the backing of the UK government.

Abbas has demanded the Israelis halt all settlement activity and that the whole West Bank be included in a future Palestinian state. Kim Howells, the British minister for foreign and commonwealth affairs, has described settlement activity as an "obstacle to peace".

The Anglo-Saxon real estate website was today listing 67 new build residential properties in Maale Adumim and six in Maccabim. That they are new properties is particularly significant because it indicates buyers would be contributing to expansion of the settlements.

Maale Adumim forms part of the Israelis' controversial E1 plan, which would see the building of thousands of housing units as well as industrial and tourism zones to connect the settlement with Jerusalem.

The result would be to divide the West Bank, making travel between north and south more onerous and isolating east Jerusalem, according to critics. Maale Adumim has around 30,000 residents and is already one of the largest settlements in the West Bank. Israel wants to retain it in any future peace agreement.

In answer to a parliamentary question in June, Howells said: "The UK consistently makes clear its view that settlements are illegal under international law and that settlement activity is an obstacle to peace."

He added: "We are concerned by reports of Israeli construction work at El. The continuing process of establishing settlements is encircling east Jerusalem and breaking up Palestinian territorial contiguity throughout the West Bank.

"These practices fuel Palestinian anger, threaten to cut east Jerusalem off from the West Bank and undermine the prospect for a viable Palestinian state."

see full story at:,,2212348,00.html

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Global Civil Society from a Contemporary Islamic Perspective

The Institute of Islamic Studies at McGill University cordially invites you to a lecture:

Professor Heba Raouf Ezzat
Department of Political Science, Cairo University, Egypt

“Global Civil Society from a Contemporary Islamic Perspective”

FRIDAY, 16 November 2007
3:00 p.m.
Morrice Hall, Room 023 (ground floor)
3485 McTavish Street

All welcome!



Location: New Chancelor Day Hall, Room 101
Time: Thursday, November 22, 16:30-18:00

Chair: Professor Payam Akhavan

Respondent: Professor Irwin Cotler

Akbar Ganji is an emblematic figure of dissent in Iran. Well-known journalist and author, Akbar Ganji spent six years in prison for exposing rights abuses committed by Iran’s fundamentalist regime. The charges stemmed from a series of investigative articles exposing the complicity of then President Rafsanjani and other leading members of the conservative clergy in the murders of political dissidents and intellectuals in 1998.

During his time in prison, Mr. Ganji endured solitary confinement and went on a hunger strike that lasted from May to August 2005. He also continued to write, producing a series of influential political manifestos and open letters calling for Iran’s secularization and the establishment of democracy through mass civil disobedience. The works were smuggled out of Evin prison and published on the Internet.

Mr. Ganji’s work has appeared in pro-democracy newspapers across Iran, most of which the government has since shut down. He has also written many books, including the bestselling The Dungeon of Ghosts (1999) and The Red Eminence and The Grey Eminence (2000).

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Lebanon Pioneers Freedom for Arab Gays

In some Arab countries homosexuals can face the death penalty. But in Lebanon an association battles openly for the rights of gays who may live freely but are still ostracized socially.

Read Article @:

Monday, October 29, 2007

NOW in Montreal: The 8th Edition of the Festival du Monde Arabe de Montreal

8th Edition of the Festival du Monde Arabe de Montreal:


Sunday, October 28, 2007

Israel shaken by troops' brutality against Palestinians

A psychologist blames assaults on civilians in the 1990s on soldiers' bad training, boredom and poor supervision

Conal Urquhart in Jerusalem
Sunday October 21, 2007
The Observer

A study by an Israeli psychologist into the violent behaviour of the country's soldiers is provoking bitter controversy and has awakened urgent questions about the way the army conducts itself in the Gaza Strip and West Bank.

Nufar Yishai-Karin, a clinical psychologist at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, interviewed 21 Israeli soldiers and heard confessions of frequent brutal assaults against Palestinians, aggravated by poor training and discipline. In her recently published report, co-authored by Professor Yoel Elizur, Yishai-Karin details a series of violent incidents, including the beating of a four-year-old boy by an officer.

The report, although dealing with the experience of soldiers in the 1990s, has triggered an impassioned debate in Israel, where it was published in an abbreviated form in the newspaper Haaretz last month. According to Yishai Karin: 'At one point or another of their service, the majority of the interviewees enjoyed violence. They enjoyed the violence because it broke the routine and they liked the destruction and the chaos. They also enjoyed the feeling of power in the violence and the sense of danger.'

In the words of one soldier: 'The truth? When there is chaos, I like it. That's when I enjoy it. It's like a drug. If I don't go into Rafah, and if there isn't some kind of riot once in some weeks, I go nuts.'

Another explained: 'The most important thing is that it removes the burden of the law from you. You feel that you are the law. You are the law. You are the one who decides... As though from the moment you leave the place that is called Eretz Yisrael [the Land of Israel] and go through the Erez checkpoint into the Gaza Strip, you are the law. You are God.'

See entire article at:,,2195924,00.html

Saturday, October 27, 2007


Thanks to everyone who came out to make this Coffeehouse a great success!!!

Monday, October 15, 2007


The IRON WALL by Mohammed Alatar

Playing October 18th @ Cinema Du Parc

7 PM ( FR v. )
9 PM ( EN v. )

“The best description of the wall, its route and its impact is given by the film The Iron Wall.”
-President Jimmy Carter

Check out:

Thursday, October 11, 2007


Join us in the Atrium at the Faculty of Law, McGill University
3644 Peel Street
(North-West Corner of Peel and Dr. Penfield)

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Saudi king details succession law

Saudi Arabia's king has issued a decree detailing the implementation of a succession law announced a year ago.

The decree outlines the workings of a committee to choose future Saudi kings and the crown princes.

Read BBC Article at: