Mr. Speaker, the 53rd session of the UN Commission on Human Rights has just opened in Geneva. This important exercise provides an opportunity for the international community to learn and consult about serious human rights violations.
In these days of market imperatives, the government must uphold its past reputation. It must break the silence that confers a sort of international impunity on regimes that are trampling the most elementary rights. It must vigorously denounce the sorts of actions taking place in Burma, Turkey, Algeria, East Timor, Nigeria and the Great Lakes region of Africa.
This government has given itself the mandate of promoting Canadian values. Will it take a stand and assume leadership on the fundamental issue of human rights? While it continues to conduct trade with impunity, men, women and children are being tortured, imprisoned and killed daily. It is high time to move from denunciation to concrete and decisive action.