BC woman who praised Hamas cannot attend protests for five months: Samidoun group

Kates' speech was condemned by BC Premier David Eby, who called the praising of a terrorist attack on innocent civilians that saw 1,200 murdered 'the most hateful' thing he could imagine.

BC woman who praised Hamas cannot attend protests for five months: Samidoun group
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Samidoun, an anti-Israel advocacy group that is banned in Germany, said on Thursday that their international coordinator, Charlotte Kates, was detained as part of a hate-crime inquiry in Vancouver.

Kates has been released under the condition of refraining from participating in protests for the next five months, CTV reports.

Kates was apprehended by Vancouver police following a speech where she lauded the October 7 attack on Israel by Hamas as "heroic and brave," according to the Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network.

Samidoun’s statement describes the October 7 attack by Hamas as a "legitimate military operation," despite Canada's classification of Hamas as a terrorist entity.

Kates, 44, was arrested following a hate crime investigation that was launched upon the video being posted online.

The Vancouver Police Department (VPD) released a statement on Wednesday stating that the woman "referred to a number of terrorist organizations as heroes."

“We defend everyone’s right to gather and express their opinions, even when those opinions are unpopular or controversial,” says Sergeant Steve Addison. “We also have a responsibility to ensure public comments don’t promote or incite hatred, encourage violence, or make people feel unsafe. We will continue to thoroughly investigate every hate incident and will pursue criminal charges whenever there is evidence of a hate crime.”

The VPD's Major Crime Section launched the investigation on April 26 showing Kates outside of the Vancouver Art Gallery speaking to hundreds of protesters.

The speech was condemned by BC Premier David Eby, who called the praising of a terrorist attack on innocent civilians that saw 1,200 murdered "the most hateful" thing he could imagine.

"Celebrating the murder, the rape of innocent people attending a music festival, it's awful. It's reprehensible and shouldn't take place in British Columbia. There is clearly an element of some individuals using an international tragedy to promote hate that's completely unacceptable."

BC Attorney General Niki Sharma took a softer tone, saying that every incident of hate "is a stark reminder of the work that still lies ahead of us as we try to build a more understanding and inclusive province."

In November of last year, German security authorities executed raids against Hamas supporters of the Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network, which has been banned from operating in the country.

The group was banned to send "a clear signal that we will not tolerate any kind of glorification or support for Hamas' barbaric terror against Israel," German Interior Minister Nancy Faeser said.

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