House of Commons Hansard #53 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was life.

Topics

International Development Week
Statements by Members

2:15 p.m.

Bloc

Antoine Dubé Lévis-Et-Chutes-De-La-Chaudière, QC

Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the Bloc Quebecois I would like to mark International Development Week by congratulating the members of the many organizations that advocate and work for developing nations. A special thanks goes out to the organizations of the Association québécoise des organismes de coopération internationale.

Unfortunately, since the current government came into power in 1993, funding for international cooperation has been cut dramatically. Although an annual increase of 8% was announced in the last Speech from the Throne, the absence of $500 million promised for the fund for aid to Africa brings Canada's contribution to 0.27% of its GDP. Note that it was 0.45% under the previous government. This is far from the 0.7% recommended by the UN.

Worse still, the portion of Canada's contribution that is allocated to non-governmental organizations continues to decline because of the administrative costs of purchases made on Canadian soil. NGOs are central to—

International Development Week
Statements by Members

2:15 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Chicoutimi—Le Fjord.

Alumiform
Statements by Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

André Harvey Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, QC

Mr. Speaker, on Friday the Secretary of State for the Economic Development Agency of Canada announced a major financial contribution of nearly $3 million for Alumiform, a small business in Chicoutimi that specializes in aluminum processing.

Alumiform hopes to use this money to tap into a future of great opportunities in foreign markets, especially the American and European markets.

The Canadian government's participation in this project is important, given the major impact it will have on the local economy. The Alumiform project will consolidate the 40 current jobs and create 80 new jobs.

This is another example of how the Canadian government helps in developing the regional economies of our country.

Canada-U.S. Relations
Statements by Members

February 5th, 2003 / 2:15 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Bill Casey Cumberland—Colchester, NS

Mr. Speaker, in December Liberal MPs asked the government to appoint a special group of cabinet ministers to develop “a more coherent strategy to improve relationships with the United States”. Instead, we have the fiasco of the Minister for International Trade holding a sales event jammed in between memorials for the seven astronauts killed in the crash of the Columbia. This lack of respect not only trivializes the Columbia fatalities but diminishes the real issues between these two countries such as the ongoing problem of softwood lumber.

This Canada sales event should have been postponed for a more appropriate time and the government should make every effort to mend fences, not aggravate an already fractured relationship.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, we all know that Secretary of State Powell for the United States made a presentation this morning to the United Nations. The presentation was described and the evidence presented. It has been described by the Minister of Foreign Affairs as disturbing and persuasive.

In the presentation, Secretary of State Powell joined with the coalition of voices, including Australia, the United Kingdom and others, saying that Saddam Hussein was in material breach of the United Nations Security Council resolution 1441. Does the Government of Canada share that opinion?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, we certainly agree with the conclusions stated by the hon. member in terms of the excellent presentation made by Secretary Powell this morning.

I might say that Secretary Powell, along with other countries in the world, Canada included, have said that the United Nations process is the proper process for us to follow. This is where we are. It is clear that process will continue.

Dr. Blix will be reporting on these disturbing allegations of Secretary Powell. We will be taking action in conformity with the world opinion and the way in which peace and global governance can be assured.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, while we appreciate that, I thought I asked a clear question and I would like to get a clear answer.

Dr. Blix was clear. He already said that Iraq was in non-compliance of the UN resolution. The allied coalition, the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia, have been clear in saying that Iraq is in material breach.

Rather than sit on the fence for the world to see, would the government answer this simple question: Is it or is it not in agreement with our allies that Iraq is in material breach of the United Nations Security Council resolution 1441?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, unfortunately the question is not that clear because it contains within it the seeds of another question which is: if there is a material breach what are the consequences of that material breach?

Those consequences can only be determined when Dr. Blix reports back as to whether or not the process has had a chance to work.

I would remind the hon. member of his very wise words of last January, when he said that he thought everyone should wait and assess the evidence before deciding on the most appropriate course of action.

We are doing that. He agrees with that. Let us stay that course. It is working.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, we are assessing the evidence. Canadians expect the government to be able to do that on its own for the benefit of the rest of the world.

Major countries have said that Iraq is in material breach of resolutions. I do not understand why the government is unable to. What is the logic at this point of giving Saddam Hussein the benefit of the doubt?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, that is why the government has consistently insisted on evaluating the evidence ourselves, for ourselves, in our own interest, not dictated by any other power.

The point of the matter is that resolution 1441 says that Iraq is in material breach in its first line.

The important thing is how do we make this system work in a way which disarms Saddam Hussein, if possible with peace, and reinforces the efficacy of the global security system we have established? That is what we are doing. We are doing it effectively. The Prime Minister, myself and all of the government is working on that. It is starting to work.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Grant Hill Macleod, AB

Mr. Speaker, here is the evidence that was presented to us: satellite pictures; intercepted phone conversations; and information that there are mobile labs producing anthrax. That information is good enough for our closest allies.

Just what evidence would it take before the government would finally get off the fence?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I think what it will take is exactly what it will take for Secretary Powell, for the United States administration, for the United Kingdom government and for others, and that is to hear Dr. Blix when he takes this to Saddam Hussein and says that he must conform with this or else, and brings an answer back to the Security Council.

No country in the world is anxious to declare anything before that happens. We are all working in conformity. Why does the opposition not work with the team instead of just trying to throw sand in the wheels of it?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Grant Hill Macleod, AB

Mr. Speaker, they all said, very plainly, that Iraq was in material breach. Why will we not?

Canada has a strong democratic tradition. When the decision to deploy troops is made, Canadians expect their representatives to have the opportunity of doing more than just talk.

Will the Prime Minister allow a vote on the action against Iraq, yes or no?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell
Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria Minister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I already explained House procedure yesterday. Furthermore, unless I am mistaken, the opposition has already informed the Chair of its intention of introducing a motion. No doubt, the opposition will have the patience to wait for the results of its own motion before anticipating the outcome.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the information presented by the U.S. Secretary of State to the Security Council was far from sufficient to justify a war against Iraq.

Given that Colin Powell himself acknowledged that he had no solid proof that Iraq had violated resolution 1441, will the government finally assume its responsibilities on the international stage and clearly state that a second resolution is needed to make any military intervention against Iraq legitimate?