Given the ongoing contention surrounding Canada's decision to sell $15 billion worth of armoured vehicles to Saudi Arabia, one wonders what sort of dance moves Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion will engage in to explain his government's ongoing support for the Middle East kingdom in light of this:
Canadian-made armoured vehicles appear to be embroiled in Saudi Arabia’s war against Yemeni-based Houthi rebels – caught up in cross-border hostilities that critics say should force Ottawa to reconsider a $15-billion deal to sell Riyadh more of these weapons.It would appear that this government, like the last, places a high priority on corporate profits:
The Saudi-led coalition fighting the Houthis – who are aligned with Iran – has already been accused by a United Nations panel of major human-rights violations for what its report called “widespread and systematic” air-strike attacks on civilian targets. Along the Saudi-Yemen border, constant skirmishes pit Houthi fighters against Saudi ground forces such as the Saudi Arabian National Guard.
The Saudi Arabian National Guard, a buyer of many Canadian-made light armoured vehicles (LAVs) in the past decade, has published photos on its official Twitter account showing how in late 2015 it moved columns of combat vehicles to Najran, a southwestern Saudi town near the border with Yemen that is in the thick of the conflict.
A significant number of vehicles in the photos have the triangular front corners, the eight wheels and the headlamps fixed above these triangles that are familiar features in earlier LAV models made in Canada.
Foreign Affairs Minister Stéphane Dion’s department refused comment Monday when pressed on whether it is concerned about the armoured vehicle shipments, saying it’s bound to secrecy on anything to do with arms sales to the Saudis.Somehow I doubt that there is sufficient money in the world to clean the blood off of the Trudeau administration's hands in this matter.
“In regards to your request, please see our response: For reasons of commercial confidentiality, specific contractual details cannot be shared,” Tania Assaly, a spokeswoman for Global Affairs said in a prepared statement.