On October 21, 2021 Spring Magazine held an online “Roundtable Discussion on Palestinian National Liberation” with the participation of Tara Alami, Moe Alqasem, Nadia Shoufani, Chandni Desai, Issam Al Yamani and Suzanne Weiss.
Issam Al Yamani was introduced by moderator Tara Alami as follows:
Issam Al Yamani is a long time Palestinian activist and a founding member of the Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid (CAIA) and the Toronto Palestine Film Festival.” He faces deportation threats from the Canadian state because of his political activities.
Background information on Issam Al Yamani based on a court document (Al Yamani v. Canada (Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness), 2007 FC 381 (CanLII)):
Mr. Al Yamani is a stateless Palestinian, who has been in Canada since 1985… Mr. Al Yamani’s father was one of the founders of the PFLP [Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine]… That said, at this point it is not disputed that the PFLP has engaged in activities commonly associated with terrorism, such as airline hijackings, kidnappings, shootings and suicide bombings. The targets of the violence are not solely military but are also civilian… Moreover, since November of 2003, the PFLP has been listed as a “terrorist organization” within the meaning of Canada’s anti-terrorism legislation. Mr. Al Yamani does not deny having been a member of the PFLP for many years, including the first six or seven years that he was in Canada. However, he submits that his involvement in the organization was limited to political activities, and there is no evidence in the record that was before the Minister that Mr. Al Yamani himself had any involvement in any violent activities associated with the PFLP. Mr. Al Yamani states that he left the PFLP in 1991 or 1992, and has had no involvement with that organization since that time. Between 1985 and 1991, while Mr. Al Yamani was living in Canada, he accepted funds on the PFLP’s behalf for distribution to charitable organizations in the Middle East, as part of his ongoing responsibilities with the PFLP. He also helped to disseminate PFLP information, and helped in organizing PFLP political and social activities in Canada.
Here is an excerpt from the roundtable:
Is there now consensus about the need for a one state solution and what would that look like in your opinion?
Issam Al Yamani:
…When we talk about one state solution we are not talking about a solution. We are talking about from [a] Palestinian perspective, from my own personal perspective, we are talking about liberating Palestine and building a Palestinian democratic state where people from all backgrounds can live together. How that will be achieved? It’s a matter of a long term process. It’s an accumulative struggle. The liberation depends on the external circumstances. What will happen after liberating Palestine? People will have to choose to leave, I mean the Zionists, the Jewish population who are in Palestine right now, they have it, it’s their choice whether to stay in Palestine and live there under a Palestinian system or they have to immigrate…