Fallout continues in the diplomatic dust-up between Canada, Saudi Arabia

08 August, 2018, 22:11 | Author: Clarence Schmidt
  • Canada asking allies to help cool Saudi dispute: Report

It also ended state-backed educational and medical programmes in Canada, making plans to relocate tens of thousands of Saudi students and patients to other countries.

Saudi Arabia called that "unfortunate, reprehensible, and unacceptable in relations between states".

Canada sparked fury in Riyadh last week when it called for the "immediate release" of rights campaigners, including award-winning women's rights activist Samar Badawi, the sister of jailed blogger Raif Badawi. Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs Chrystia Freeland, whose tweet sparked the hostility, said that "Canada will continue to advocate for human rights and for the fearless women and men who push for these fundamental rights around the world" after Saudi's response.

The Canadian dollar fell on Wednesday after the Financial Times reported that Saudi Arabian officials instructed the kingdom's asset managers to dump their holdings of the country's assets. According to Bloomberg, Saudi Arabia has invested about $6 billion into Canada since 2006. Annual Saudi-Canadian trade hovers around $4bn.

"The matter is not about human rights, it is a matter of national security", Jubeir said, referring to the row with Canada.


Saudi Arabia's diplomatic row with Canada is showing no signs of slowing.

Jubeir added that the kingdom was still "considering additional measures" against Canada.

Since rising to power in 2015, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has courted Western allies by offering to buy billions of dollars worth of arms.

Although Saudi Arabia is one of the world's top executioners, crucifixions where the body is put on display publicly are rare.

In a statement on August 5, the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced it would expel the Canadian Ambassador and freeze all new trade and investments because of Canada's "interference in the Kingdom's domestic affairs". A Saudi airline has also interrupted flights to the North American country. The state-run SPA news agency said Riyadh had stopped sending patients to Canadian hospitals and "is coordinating for the transfer of all Saudi patients from Canadian hospitals. according to directives by the leadership".

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