Canadian poet Rupi Kaur declines White House invitation over Gaza

TORONTO — Canadian poet Rupi Kaur says she's turned down an invitation from U.S. President Joe Biden's administration because she opposes his government's response to the Israel-Gaza war.

Kaur says in an Instagram post that the administration invited her to Vice-President Kamala Harris's Diwali celebration.

She writes that she won't attend because the U.S. government is funding Israel's bombardment of Gaza.

Kaur says she can't accept an invitation from "an institution that supports the collective punishment of a trapped civilian population."

More than 10,000 Palestinians have been killed in Israel's military offensive in Gaza, according to the Hamas-run Health Ministry there.

The war broke out after the Palestinian militant group Hamas attacked Israel last month, leaving upwards of 1,400 people dead.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 6, 2023.

The Canadian Press