House of Commons Hansard #145 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was crime.

Topics

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Carleton—Mississippi Mills
Ontario

Conservative

Gordon O'Connor Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, we have military operations going on in Afghanistan. We do not advertise everything we do and every one of our actions in public because there are lives at stake in Afghanistan. That is why we keep operational information quiet.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Geneva convention is clear on the prisoner transfers. It states:

--the following acts are and shall remain prohibited at any time and in any place whatsoever...Violence to life and person...murder of all kinds, mutilation, cruel treatment and torture....

In the Arar case, Justice O'Connor recommended also that:

“Canadian officials should not wait for 'verification' or unequivocal evidence of torture...before arriving at a conclusion of a likelihood of torture.

Why is the government putting Canadians at risk of breaching the Geneva convention?

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Simcoe—Grey
Ontario

Conservative

Helena Guergis Secretary of State (Foreign Affairs and International Trade) (Sport)

Mr. Speaker, I have with me a quote dated April 10, 2006, by the member for Vancouver South, who said he had read the agreement and reviewed it:

I agree that it is an important agreement and it is one that is quite good in many respects. The involvement of the International Red Cross or the Red Crescent as an independent third party is very important because it can then follow the prisoners and ensure they are treated well and appropriately in accordance with the Geneva conventions. The agreement makes reference to the Geneva conventions and that is important for us to recognize.

That was said by the MP for Vancouver South.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, the only difference is that at least our member knew what the Red Cross did. The minister does not know how the Red Cross worked. It is quite pathetic.

This government is unable to provide the slightest bit of information, such as the number of detainees who have been transferred, their current status or whether there have been any disappearances. This government is showing that it has no interest in its responsibilities under the Geneva convention. It is in complete denial.

How will we win the respect of the Afghans if Canadians cannot get assurances that this Conservative government will respect international law?

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Simcoe—Grey
Ontario

Conservative

Helena Guergis Secretary of State (Foreign Affairs and International Trade) (Sport)

Mr. Speaker, what is pathetic is the fact that it took the Liberals four years to put a policy in place, and it was only done a month before Canadians fired them. We have quotes and evidence that they support the agreement they put in place, and now they have decided it is not good enough.

It is this Conservative government that is going to enhance this policy.

Gasoline Prices
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Vincent Shefford, QC

Mr. Speaker, the skyrocketing price of gasoline cannot be attributed to international factors alone. It also has to do with the voluntary closure of some refineries. A reasonable refining margin seems to be between 5¢ and 7¢, depending on the type of gas. We recently learned that this margin has reached 27¢. This translates into a 20¢ jump in profit. As we all know, the price at the pump is within provincial jurisdiction.

Can the federal government not verify the rate of profit on the refining margin, since this falls within its jurisdiction?

Gasoline Prices
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Saanich—Gulf Islands
B.C.

Conservative

Gary Lunn Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, we all know that the price of gasoline is driven by market conditions, and what we do know, in fact, is that we have uncovered a conspiracy to increase gas prices. The sinister group behind this plot is none other than the Liberal Party of Canada. In fact, this is supported by economists such as Don Drummond and Mark Jaccard, who have confirmed that under the Liberal plan the price of gasoline would rise by more than 60% of today's prices.

When we look at the comments made by the Leader of the Opposition, who says that “high gas prices are actually good for Canada”, it is no wonder the Liberals are sitting on that side of the House.

Gasoline Prices
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Vincent Shefford, QC

Mr. Speaker, we certainly do not mean to suggest any collusion, but here are the facts. In Halifax, for instance, Esso does the refining for everyone. In New Brunswick, Irving does it. In Quebec City, the same idea, it is Ultramar. In Montreal, guess what? Petro-Canada and Shell do the work for everyone, even for the competition.

Should we not start asking ourselves some questions, when the refining profit margin is 20¢ too high? Does this not warrant a serious investigation and an agency to monitor the whole thing?

Gasoline Prices
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Saanich—Gulf Islands
B.C.

Conservative

Gary Lunn Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, there have been six federal studies of gas prices and each and every time the Competition Bureau has found that there has been no price fixing. If the member has information and would like another investigation, he is welcome to bring that forward.

However, our government is taking action. We have brought in $2 billion in our biofuel strategy. We are providing incentives for Canadians to purchase fuel efficient vehicles. We have lowered the GST. Our government is doing something about it.

Taxation
Oral Questions

May 2nd, 2007 / 2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Auditor General has told us eight times now that excessive use of tax havens, such as Barbados, by wealthy taxpayers is a threat to Canada's tax base.

How can the minister simply stand by knowing that his government is losing billions of dollars in tax revenues every year, billions of dollars that middle class taxpayers have to compensate for, to fund the federal government's spending?

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Calgary—Nose Hill
Alberta

Conservative

Diane Ablonczy Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the government is very concerned about tax loopholes and tax havens. That is why we are eliminating an important tax loophole allowing multinational corporations to deduct interest incurred in foreign jurisdictions without paying taxes.

I point to the fact that the official opposition does not seem to agree with this, but the Toronto Star says that it makes no sense to allow companies to claim breaks against income on which they pay no tax. The Liberal leader is turning his back on sound policy.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, if this government is serious about its intentions, the recent budgetary measures will not put an end to this situation.

Do the Minister of Finance and the government understand that they do not even have to change the legislation? The easiest way to deal with the Barbados issue is to amend section 5907 of the Income Tax Act regulations.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Calgary—Nose Hill
Alberta

Conservative

Diane Ablonczy Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, closing tax loopholes makes lower taxes for all Canadians. That is our goal. We want to make Canada even more competitive for all business. We are having discussions on a manner of issues and areas where we can move forward with this agenda. This goal is possible, and I welcome the Bloc's support in moving forward on this.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Ruby Dhalla Brampton—Springdale, ON

Mr. Speaker, chaos, confusion and cover up and now access to information documents show that the government tried to suppress a photograph of Afghan detainees a year ago.

In May 2006 a photojournalist took pictures of 10 suspected insurgents captured by the Canadian military. Canadian military lawyers told him that the photos could not be published because they would violate the Geneva convention.

Why is the government's respect for human rights and the Geneva convention so selective?

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Simcoe—Grey
Ontario

Conservative

Helena Guergis Secretary of State (Foreign Affairs and International Trade) (Sport)

Mr. Speaker, again, I can confirm for the member that Canadians are respecting their obligations under international law. Canadian brave men and women are doing an excellent job in Afghanistan. We have relationships with the Government of Afghanistan and the human rights commission to ensure there is an investigation. We will work closely with them.