Montreal artists raise awareness for refugees

A group of Montrealers is calling on prime minister-designate Justin Trudeau to live up to his campaign promise to accept 25,000 Syrian refugees into the country.

Artist group hopes that incoming Liberal government will stick to campaign promises

Written in Arabic, artist Nahed Koussa's words represent a refugee's journey. (Ainslie Maclellan/CBC)

As the conflict rages on in Syria, a group of Montrealers is calling on prime minister-designate Justin Trudeau to live up to his campaign promises to accept 25,000 refugees into the country.

Artists gathered at Place-des-Arts to use dance, music and calligraphy to raise awareness about the challenges that refugees face on a daily basis.

Organized by Amnesty International, the event showcased art that documents refugees' journeys. 

Members of the group explained when refugees arrive in Canada many of them deal with stigma and prejudice. The group's art is meant to correct stereotypes.

"I'm a biochemist. I work at McGill University. I help you Canadians discover things about cancer," said Elite Possik, a Lebanese Montrealer.

"I think there are many people with talent in our countries who could come here."

Artists read testimonies from refugees during the event. (Ainslie MacLellan/ CBC)
Artists at the event also hoped to encourage Trudeau to uphold his promise of offering more support for refugees.

"Twenty-five thousand is not a lot for Canada, but it still would make a big difference for Syrian people," said Jacques Sayegh from La Maison de la Syrie.


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.