House of Commons Hansard #67 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was women.

Topics

Lobbyists
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

NDP

Libby Davies Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, Emanuel Montenegrino is the Prime Minister's lawyer. He is also now registered to lobby the Conservatives to approve the sale of RADARSAT technology to an American weapons maker.

Considering Mr. Montenegrino's regular contributions to the Prime Minister's Conservative campaigns, would the government not want to keep its promise of openness and accountability and tell the Prime Minister's counsel to stick to practising law and not political lobbying?

Lobbyists
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

York—Simcoe
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, in our tough new accountability act we brought in sweeping provisions, including those which extend to lobbying, and further efforts to ensure transparency, more sweeping than any ever done under any previous government.

Let me assure the member that when the Minister of Industry makes the decision he is required to make on this, it will not be one that is determined by lobbyists. It is a decision that will be determined entirely by the best interests of Canada. He takes that responsibility very seriously. I think all of us in the House know that he will take it on that basis.

Lobbyists
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

NDP

Libby Davies Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, that answer is exactly why Canadians do not trust the Conservative government.

It is very simple. Mr. Montenegrino is the Prime Minister's lawyer. He is lobbying for approval of the unethical sale of Canadian RADARSAT technology to an American weapons maker in violation of our national interests, putting Canadian sovereignty at risk

The Conservatives promised accountability, so why is the Prime Minister's lawyer and long time friend lobbying a minister for a rotten deal that should never go through?

Lobbyists
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

York—Simcoe
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, this government has taken great steps to advance and assert our sovereignty on the world stage much more strongly than has happened under previous governments. We have seen that with our initiatives in the north, where we are extending Canadian sovereignty with serious commitments and investments, and we are seeing that with our action elsewhere on the world stage.

In terms of the transaction in question, the decision will be made on a simple basis: what is in Canada's best interests? That is how the minister will make that decision.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Liberal

Raymonde Folco Laval—Les Îles, QC

Mr. Speaker, Brenda Martin is languishing in a Mexican prison and is at the end of her rope. While this Conservative government drags its feet, Ms. Martin is hitting rock bottom. There are concerns that she will not make it. She is so desperate that she says she is now thinking of taking her own life.

What is this government waiting for to give her a glimmer of hope? Since his ministers are incompetent, will the Prime Minister finally deign to pick up the phone and help Ms. Martin?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Calgary East
Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, like all members, we are very concerned about Ms. Martin's health. We have expressed our strong concerns to the Mexican authorities regarding inappropriate conditions of her detention, delays in bringing her case to trial, and lack of translation facilities.

I want to assure all Canadians and Ms. Martin that in the coming weeks the Government of Canada will continue to press for a quick, positive resolution to this case.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Liberal

Raymonde Folco Laval—Les Îles, QC

It continues, Mr. Speaker, and we will get more of the same. I am not at all certain that the Canadian people really accept this answer.

The Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs would not even take Ms. Martin's phone call. The secretary of state could not even be bothered to visit Ms. Martin in jail when she was only 20 minutes away. When she was asked why she did not visit Ms. Martin's cell, where she was crammed in with 11 other prisoners, the secretary of state answered, “It's not my job”.

If it is not her job to help Brenda Martin, will the Prime Minister use this break week to fill the void and make the case to have Ms. Martin immediately returned to Canada?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Calgary East
Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, as I said in my previous answer, the government has made the highest of representations to the Mexican authorities. The foreign affairs minister called the foreign affairs minister of Mexico just last week to express his strong concerns on this case.

Again, I can assure Canadians and Ms. Martin that we will continue to talk with the highest levels of the Mexican authorities to have a quick, positive resolution to this case.

Canada-U.S. Relations
Oral Questions

March 14th, 2008 / 11:35 a.m.

Liberal

Michael Savage Dartmouth—Cole Harbour, NS

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Foreign Affairs continues to hide behind his so-called investigation into the leak of confidential diplomatic information, which continues to interfere in the U.S. presidential election. He will not release any details. He will not give us any facts. He expects us to trust him on this one.

Unfortunately, when it comes to trust, the government's record is miserable and Canadians know it. Will the minister ask Ambassador Michael Wilson to step aside during this investigation to prevent any further leaks and any further damage to our relationship with the United States?

Canada-U.S. Relations
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Calgary East
Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, as the Prime Minister has already said, we take this matter very seriously.

However, I want to tell members that NAFTA has been a very, very good agreement between Canada and the U.S.A. It has helped raise living standards and it is touted as one of the best trade agreements. Not only that, but we take our relationship with our southern partners very seriously. It is a strong relationship and we will continue to further this relationship.

As I have said, as the Prime Minister has said and as the Minister of Foreign Affairs has said, the investigation is going on and appropriate action will be taken when the results are out.

Canada-U.S. Relations
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Liberal

Michael Savage Dartmouth—Cole Harbour, NS

Mr. Speaker, that is no answer, so let me make it specific and easy for the government. Article 41.1 of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations says of relations between nations that the government has “a duty not to interfere in the internal affairs of that State”.

That seems pretty clear. Has the minister even sought a legal opinion as to whether Michael Wilson's involvement in the NAFTA leaks constituted a breach of this international convention?

Canada-U.S. Relations
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Calgary East
Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I fail to understand why they do not listen to what I have just answered, which is very clear and straightforward. The investigation is going on. When the results are in, we will take appropriate action as deemed necessary, but I would like to tell the hon. member that even the U.S. ambassador to Canada has said that this matter is now over.

We take our relationship with our southern partners very seriously and we will continue strengthening our relationship.

Omar Khadr
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Bloc

Pauline Picard Drummond, QC

Mr. Speaker, in the case of Omar Khadr, the young Canadian held in Guantanamo, we have learned that the American sergeant who interrogated him is before a court martial accused of abusing detainees during interrogations. It is even suspected that he caused the death of one of them. We know that, during his detention, Mr. Khadr was subjected to cruel and inhumane treatment.

What is the government waiting for to bring him back to Canada for his trial?

Omar Khadr
Oral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Calgary East
Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, Mr. Khadr faces very serious charges. The Government of Canada has sought and received assurances that Mr. Khadr is being treated humanely. Department officials have carried out several welfare visits with Mr. Khadr and will continue to do so.

Omar Khadr
Oral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Bloc

Pauline Picard Drummond, QC

Mr. Speaker, we have also learned that an American army officer allegedly changed a report in order to blame young Mr. Khadr. The first report, the original one, said that the assailant had been killed. Mr. Khadr was therefore not involved in this case. In view of the facts, there is no reason for the government to wait.

When will it take action to bring Omar Khadr home?