On 17 December 2020, a day of action was successfully organised by Fightback activists in different cities across Canada. Student, youth and workers staged protests in front of Pakistan High Commission and Consulates demanding answers on the state abduction of Amar Fayaz. Protests were held in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver and Ottawa and further actions happened in other places.
Weather in Canada was chilling cold with heavy winds, but participating activists showed immense courage of international sociality for their abducted comrade in Pakistan Amar Fayaz.
The #ReleaseAmarFayaz campaign has already received support from NDP and several unions bringing together tens of thousands of workers across Canada and the US. Internationally, politicians like Jeremy Corbyn have supported the campaign.
In the day of action, participants chanted slogans demanding Amar’s release. They exposed Pakistani state brutal actions regarding illegal abduction of socialists. Activists said that in Pakistan, student, youth and workers who genuinely raise voice for the rights of people are abducted by the state. The Pakistani state has nothing to give to its youth and workers and are even taking away their right to live. Whoever is demanding rights and justice, is abducted and disappeared by the state. Amar Fayaz met with the same fate. Amar was demanding free education, campaigning against gender harassment in campuses, demanding jobs for all, and minimum wage.
Comrades in Toronto staged an energetic protest near the embassy building. Toronto local Police and Federal RCMP didn’t allow comrades to go near the consulate building, saying that it’s private property. However, comrades chanted slogans and made fiery speeches. Embassy staff and visitors came outside of the building to listen to comrades. Furthermore, the building is near to the main road, and almost all transport workers passing-by showed solidarity with protestors. This was the third time comrades were at the Toronto consulate demanding answers on Amar Fayaz’s state abduction. Still, the consulate officials, particularly the deputy high commissioner, refused to meet or send any response on Amar Fayaz disappearance. Comrades also gave interviews to a local TV channel and news media.
Pictures from Toronto protest.
The protest in front of Pakistan High Commission in Ottawa remained peaceful. Participants made speeches and chanted slogans against state abduction of Amar Fayaz.
Protest in front of Pakistani Consulate in Vancouver involved slogans and speeches against state abductions. Local media channels including Omni and City News took interviews of comrades.
Activists in Montreal also protested in front of Pakistani consulate. They continued demanding that Pakistani state release Amar Fayaz. Activists tried to present a letter to the consulate, asking about Amar Fayaz, why he was kidnapped, and demanding his release. But the Pakistani consulate officials refused to take the letter and also ran away from having a dialogue by hiding behind closed doors. They become scared with a handful of comrades who were protesting peacefully.
Comrades in other cities held digital protests including sending emails to Pakistan High Commissioner, Consul generals and Pakistani state officials demanding the release of Amar Fayaz along with social media campaign.
Activists vowed to step up the campaign and challenge Pakistani officials in Canada that they will return to the High Commission and Consulates and demand answers on state abduction of Amar Fayaz.