Saudi-Canada dispute will not affect oil supplies: Saudi minister

09 Agosto, 2018, 16:52 | Author: Arnold Perez
  • Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Adel Al Jubeir speaks during a news conference in Riyadh Saudi Arabia August 2018

Samar Badawi and activist Nassima al Sadah, who had campaigned for women's right to drive, were arrested last month.

"But we will continue underscoring challenges where and when they exist, in Saudi Arabia and elsewhere".

"Canada will always speak strongly and clearly in private and in public on questions of human rights", he said.

Mr Trudeau told reporters in Montreal that Canadian foreign minister Chrystia Freeland had held talks with her Saudi counterpart.

The Saudi central bank and state pensions funds have announced complete disposal of all Canadian funds, and have instructed their overseas assets managers to eradicate their Canadian equities "no matter the cost".

Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Media said it is investigating a pro Saudi government Twitter account that posted a photo of an Air Canada plane heading toward the CN Tower, eerily reminiscent of the 9/11 attacks.

The dispute between the two countries began August 2 when Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland posted a tweet calling for the release of Saudi women's rights activist Samar Badawi.

More than a dozen women's rights activists have been targeted since May.

When asked about the jailed activists, Jubeir on Wednesday reiterated the government's stance that they had been in contact with foreign entities, but did not specify the charges against them.

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Saudi Arabia is Canada's biggest trade partner in the Gulf region. The kingdom also cancelled new trade with Canada and barred Canadian wheat imports.

"There is nothing to mediate", he said.

The sell-off comes as Saudi Arabia attempts to use its financial and political powers to stop Canada from interfering in its sovereign affairs.

As tensions escalate between Canada and Saudi Arabia over human rights, Canadian engineering and infrastructure giant SNC-Lavalin is warning it could get caught in the crossfire if the feud continues.

He said: "Canada made a mistake and they know what they need to do to correct it".

A number of prominent journalists, religious leaders and activists have been arrested despite reforms introduced by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to open up society and the economy.

Saudi Arabia's actions mirror its regional blockade imposed on Qatar past year, where Saudi and its regional allies took monetary action against the Gulf state, insisting they remove Qatari investments from their portfolios.

But the country's state-owned airline has suspended flights to Toronto.

The move came after Germany's foreign minister last November remarked that Lebanon was a "pawn" of Saudi Arabia after the surprise resignation of its Prime Minister Saad Hariri while in Riyadh.


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