Montreal, Canada - October 31, 2004

October 2004 - Vol. 14

RCPL October 2004 Newsletter includes the following items:

1.
RCPL conducts study on employment integration in Quebec 
2.
NDP takes a stand on Lebanon
3. Hizbollah, Amal clash in south Lebanon town
4. Security Council urges Syria to withdraw troops from Lebanon
5. New government takes power for 7 months in Lebanon


1. RCPL conducts study on employment integration in Quebec

At the request of Quebec’s Ministère des Relations avec les citoyens et de l'Immigration, RCPL conducted a study about the integration of Lebanese immigrants into the Quebec workforce. The study presents a brief overview of immigration waves to Quebec and the socio-demographic state of the community. The study also consulted over 135 Canadians of Lebanese descent in order to formulate 4 key recommendations. The report can be obtained from our web site at
http://www.rcplonline.org/research-study/RCPL%20Employment%20integration.pdf.


2. NDP takes a stand on Lebanon

The Foreign Affairs spokesperson of the NDP, Alexa McDonough, has repeated its request that Canada takes a lead in brokering peace in the Middle East by appointing a peace envoy. The spokesperson also brought to the attention of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Pierre Pettigrew, the UNSC resolution 1559 and the related implications on Lebanon, and that the Canadian-Lebanese community is concerned about the on-going volatile situation in their ancestral homeland.


3. Hizbollah, Amal clash in south Lebanon town

War like scenes toke place in early October as militias exchanged gun fires in the Southern Lebanese town of Zibdine. While both the Taef National reconciliation accord and the UNSCR 1559 call for the disarming of militia, armed groups operate at free will in certain regions of Lebanon. RCPL calls on the Canadian government to remind their Lebanese counterparts of the importance in providing a secure and stable environment to its citizens, which requires a zero-tolerance approach to weapons in the country.


4. Security Council urges Syria to withdraw troops from Lebanon 

On October 19, 2004, the United Nations Security Council voiced its concern that “the requirements set out in resolution 1559 have not been met, as reported by the Secretary-General.” The resolution declared the Council’s support for polling free from outside influence, and called for the withdrawal of all remaining foreign forces, the disbanding of all militias and the extension of Government control over the entire country.


5. New government takes power for 7 months in Lebanon

Following the resignation of Rafik Hariri, the outgoing Premier of Lebanon, a new government has taken power under the leadership of the Premier Omar Karami. The mandate of the government will last only for 7 months given the spring parliamentary elections that are likely to take place.

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