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Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was peace.

Last in Parliament April 1997, as Liberal MP for Papineau—Saint-Michel (Québec)

Won his last election, in 1993, with 52% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Greece May 15th, 1995

Mr. Speaker, indeed I would confirm to the hon. member that this suggestion is very worthy and we will study it very quickly.

Bosnia May 2nd, 1995

Mr. Speaker, we regret that the parties did not accept to extend the ceasefire period. However, we hope that the fact that the ceasefire is over does not necessarily mean a new onslaught of hostilities. Efforts have been made to bring the parties to use restraint and to not resume hostilities, even though they have chosen not to renew the ceasefire.

We are perfectly aware that the situation could deteriorate. That is why we have placed our trust in the representative of the United Nations, whom we support in all of his efforts.

Bosnia May 2nd, 1995

Mr. Speaker, the situation is certainly very serious and we hope that the representative of the United Nations, Mr. Akashi, will be successful in negotiating with the parties, on the one hand, the release of the hostages, and, on the other, a ceasefire which would bring lasting peace to this part of the world.

I can reassure the hon. member and the other members of this House that we are taking appropriate measures, in collaboration with the other countries which have contributed to this UN peacekeeping mission, to protect the soldiers participating in this mission as much as possible.

There are risks inherent in being a soldier, by the very nature of the work, but we are also aware that we cannot keep troops in a situation where the role they are intended to play as peacekeepers no longer has its place. That is why we are in the process of re-examining the whole issue in collaboration with the other governments concerned.

Non-Governmental Organizations May 1st, 1995

Mr. Speaker, I want to reassure the hon. member that indeed we are not abandoning our commitment. We are going to do it differently. We will privilege bilateral relations and programs with non-governmental organizations that are operating in those countries where the need is the greatest.

We are certainly determined, as our red book has said and as our policy enunciations reiterate, to play an active role in this regard.

Bosnia May 1st, 1995

Mr. Speaker, the answer to the three points is yes.

I know that some members of the Reform Party were not too happy because I was trying to give as elaborate an answer as possible. The situation in ex-Yugoslavia is extremely serious. I do not know if they feel we should not be participating in trying to maintain peace and security in Europe. However, it certainly is important and I commend the hon. member for raising a question of such importance in the House of Commons.

Bosnia May 1st, 1995

Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the hon. member for giving me this opportunity to say, on behalf of the Canadian government, that we support the efforts of the UN envoy, Mr. Akashi.

The developments which occurred over the last few hours give us reason to believe that, although the truce will not be extended, fighting will not intensify. We, of course, made representations to the parties involved in the conflict, asking them to use some elementary restraint so that the situation does not deteriorate any further.

The position of UN peacekeeping forces is such that they can save lives among the population affected by the conflict. This is why Canada continues to support the UN's efforts to restore peace.

Land Mines April 26th, 1995

Mr. Speaker, the answer is yes. The hon. member should know that a number of countries are presently respecting a moratorium in this regard. Canada, I am told, has not exported land mines since 1987.

We would like to work diligently with others in Vienna to extend the convention on certain conventional weapons and to ensure that land mines are covered and properly taken care of.

Rwanda April 24th, 1995

Mr. Speaker, it is obvious that this ruthless behaviour on the part of the army puts in jeopardy all the efforts made over the last few weeks to bring about reconciliation between the various groups and factions.

Clearly, we will have to review our position at this time, because we thought that the good faith and the efforts of the government over the last few weeks seemed promising. We are waiting impatiently for the report of Ambassador Dusseault and we will act according to the recommendations he will make. I will keep in mind the suggestions of the hon. member.

Rwanda April 24th, 1995

Mr. Speaker, the Canadian government condemned in the most vigorous way the massacre just described by the hon. member. We immediately asked Ambassador Dusseault to go to the camp, inquire and report as quickly as possible.

Burundi April 6th, 1995

Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for recognizing that the government is already involved. It is not fair to say that we are unconcerned. On the contrary, the initiatives which I just mentioned reflect our will to find a solution.

The hon. member would like Canada to be a leader regarding that issue. We are prepared to take on the role which the parties involved would like us to assume. Canada cannot impose itself. However, we have clearly shown that we are willing and prepared to help the parties involved if it is their wish.