Prime Minister Justin Trudeau expresses his full support of the American Tomahawk cruise missiles attack on a Syrian airbase in Homs in response to a chemical attack in the area of Idlib in northern Syria earlier this week.
On April 7, 2017, Trudeau issued the following statement:
Canada fully supports the United States’ limited and focused action to degrade the Assad regime’s ability to launch chemical weapons attacks against innocent civilians, including many children. President Assad’s use of chemical weapons and the crimes the Syrian regime has committed against its own people cannot be ignored. These gruesome attacks cannot be permitted to continue with impunity. This week’s attack in southern Idlib and the suffering of Syrians is a war crime and is unacceptable. Canada condemns all uses of chemical weapons. Canada will continue to support diplomatic efforts to resolve the crisis in Syria.
On Wednesday, April 5, 2017, Trudeau announced in Parliament “$840-million worth of lifesaving humanitarian and development assistance for the region to alleviate the suffering in this conflict” and committed to continue the training of the Kurdish militias (Peshmerga). The following are excerpts from Trudeau’s statements:
Mr. Speaker, we are shocked and appalled by the reports of chemical weapons attacks against civilians in Syria. Many of the victims were children.It is critical that we hold those responsible to account for these war crimes. We are supporting evidence gathering to achieve that end. In addition, we will provide $840-million worth of lifesaving humanitarian and development assistance for the region to alleviate the suffering in this conflict. As we speak, the Minister of Foreign Affairs is at the Brussels conference on the future of Syria. These meetings will work toward finding a lasting political resolution to the Syrian war and to addressing the critical needs of the most vulnerable… Mr. Speaker, we know the Minister of National Defence misled Canadians when he said that our allies were okay with Canada pulling our fighter jets out of the fight against ISIS. We now know that this was deliberately misleading, and it was a betrayal of our nation’s trust. My question to the Prime Minister is very straightforward. Did he instruct his Minister of National Defence to mislead Canadians in order to save face?
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Chrystia Freeland, says that the chemical attack “raises grave questions about the possibility of working with the Assad regime.” The following are Freeland’s most recent statements on Assad regime:
April 4, 2017– “We are outraged by reports of a chemical weapons attack against civilians—particularly the senseless suffering and death of children—in southern Idlib, Syria. Not all the facts are yet available, but this deplorable incident is consistent with the actions of a regime that has brutally and repeatedly used chemical weapons against its own people. If confirmed, this new use of chemical weapons further weakens the credibility of the regime as a potential partner for peace.”
April 5, 2017: “Tuesday’s horrific chemical attack in Idlib, Syria contravenes any moral sense and raises grave questions about the possibility of working with the Assad regime.”