(December 1, 2021 / JNS) Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has reappointed Irwin Cotler as Canada’s special envoy on preserving Holocaust remembrance and combating anti-Semitism, the prime minister announced on his website.
A renowned scholar and international human-rights lawyer, Cotler was first appointed special envoy in November 2020 following his career as a minister of justice and attorney general of Canada, as well as a member of the Canadian parliament for the Liberal Party from 1999 to 2015. The position of special envoy was created last year; his reappointment is for a term of up to one year.
“Anti-Semitism has no place in Canada or anywhere else, and we will always stand with Jewish communities to fight hatred in all its forms,” said Trudeau. “As special envoy, Mr. Cotler will continue to ensure that the painful lessons of the Holocaust and the memories of those who lived through it are never forgotten. Only through effective education, research and remembrance can we foster a society free of prejudice and discrimination.”
In the position, Cotler will lead the Canadian government delegation to the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance.
He will additionally “contribute his vast experience to the strengthening and promotion of Holocaust education, remembrance and research at home and abroad,” according to the announcement. “He will also keep advocating and supporting outreach efforts with Canadians, civil society, parliamentarians and academia to advance the adoption and implementation of the IHRA’s working definition of anti-Semitism in Canada and internationally.”
The special envoy works closely with the minister of foreign affairs; the minister of Canadian heritage; and the minister of housing, and diversity and inclusion.
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