European Union to Saudis: Clarify activists arrests

Remigio Civitarese
Agosto 14, 2018

According to Trudeau, the Minister of foreign Affairs of Canada Chrystia Freeland on Tuesday, August 7, continued communication with his counterpart from Saudi Arabia, and Canada continues to engage directly with the government of this ultra-conservative Kingdom, which suspended diplomatic relations between the two countries.

The EU has called on Saudi Arabia to clarify on the circumstances concerning the detentions of women rights activists. At the same time, Saudi's treatment towards human rights activists and towards anyone showing any dissenting viewpoints has earned it the label of an aggressor.

"We fully agree with the statement of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation secretary general that Saudi Arabia enjoys vast respect especially among countries that have a similar standoff with human rights - which has a growing western lobby", Faisal said.

Will we continue to wring our hands about the refugee crisis and say nothing of the oppressive regimes that force people to flee their native lands?

According to Trudeau, the goal of Canada is to achieve bad relations with Saudi Arabia, and that Canada respects an important place in the world.

Germany and Sweden had previously been entangled in disputes with Riyadh. He added that Pakistan has shown its solidarity with Riyadh in this regard.

Canada imports around 75,000-80,000 bpd of Saudi oil, and these barrels can easily be replaced, CBC quoted analyst Judith Dwarkin as saying earlier this week. The United States could easily replace Saudi crude thanks to its growing production, Dwarkin said. The response was an example of a new, young Saudi leader making a "Trumpian" ego-driven response.

On Wednesday, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said that Freeland remains engaged in talks with the government of Saudi Arabia despite the row.

The economic impact of the Saudi retaliation on Canada is unlikely to be large, but the fact that Saudi Arabia is whipping the oil wealth stick to punish economically what it sees as "blatant" interference with its affairs is sending a message to other countries, and a not-so-positive message to foreign investors.

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