Another controversial Islamic group gets Summer Jobs Grant funding

“It is our duty, our individual duty, that we all share their jihad and their struggle against the Zionists by all means necessary." - Muslim Association of Canada imam Tarek Ramadan

(This column originally appeared in the Toronto Sun)

By: Candice Malcolm

Another controversial Islamic group with ties to a terrorist organization will receive the Trudeau government’s Canada Summer Jobs Grant, the Sun has learned. 

According to a government database of grant recipients, the Muslim Association of Canada (MAC) has been approved to receive ten grants to fund activities for its various chapters across Ontario. MAC’s Mississauga chapter is listed as receiving three separate grants. 

In 2015, QMI news agency obtained an RCMP search warrant that linked MAC headquarters in Mississauga to the International Relief Fund for the Afflicted and Needy-Canada (IRFAN-Canada) – a banned terrorist organization with financial ties to Hamas. 

Though no charges were laid as a result of the warrant, the RCMP cited a CRA document showing that “MAC provided $296,514 between 2001 and 2010” to IRFAN-Canada. Within that period, from 2005 and 2009, “IRFAN-Canada transferred approximately $14.6 million worth of resources to various organizations associated with Hamas,” according to the federal department of public safety.

IRFAN-Canada was designated as a banned terrorist group in 2014 by the Harper government. According to the federal government’s list of terrorist entities, this designation was renewed in November 2016 under the Trudeau government. 

According to national security expert Tom Quiggin, pointing to a 2015 testimony to the Canadian Senate, IRFAN-Canada’s support for Hamas dates back to 1992 and the organization has been identified as a front group for the Muslim Brotherhood – a banned terrorist group in Egypt, where the organization was founded. It’s also banned in Syria, Saudi Arabia and Russia. 

While the Muslim Brotherhood’s focus is the introduction of Sharia Law as a political and religious doctrine, Hamas’s stated goal is the destruction of Israel. 

The RCMP warrant led to a raid on IRFAN-Canada’s headquarters, where investigators seized bank statements, donation forms and propaganda videos demonizing Israel. 

The 113-page RCMP warrant shows ties between MAC and IRFAN-Canada, and alleges both terrorist financing and that financial transactions took place at a MAC mosque in Montreal. 

While MAC publicly speaks out against violence and terrorism, its leaders have also expressed support for both Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood. MAC’s website once listed Muslim Brotherhood founder Imam Hassan Al-Banna as a major influence of the organization.

Based in Mississauga, Ontario, MAC owns and operates at least 18 mosques and 20 schools across Canada; its properties in Canada are valued at upwards of $31 million. 

A MAC-operated mosque in Vancouver also made headlines last November when its imam called on Muslims to send “money, weapons and expertise” to Palestinians fighting against Israel.

In a video released by B’nai B’rith, MAC Imam Tarek Ramadan is seen referring to Israelis as “an impure gang,” saying that “Zionists” are the “worst of mankind.” 

“It is our duty, our individual duty, that we all share their jihad and their struggle against the Zionists by all means necessary,” says Ramadan in an English-language sermon in Vancouver where he calls for destruction of the Jewish state. 

The Canada Summer Jobs Grant became controversial this year when the Trudeau government made pledge to uphold abortion rights and LGBT rights in order to qualify for federal funding. 

As reported exclusively in the Sun, two controversial Islamic groups with a history of supporting terror groups and making anti-gay comments – the Canada Arab Federation and the Anatolia Islamic Centre – were both approved to receive the grant in 2018.

It is not clear whether the Muslim Association of Canada signed the Trudeau government’s controversial attestation. They did not immediately respond to an interview request from the Sun.