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Subcommittee on International Human Rights of the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development



Tuesday, June 7, 2022

[Recorded by Electronic Apparatus]



     Honourable members of the subcommittee, I see that we have a quorum, so we will get started.
    I also see that we have a vacancy in the position of chair, so I will proceed directly to the election of the chair.
    Pursuant to the motion adopted by the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development on December 13, 2021, the chair must be a member of the governing party.
    Are there any nominations for the position of chair?
    Go ahead, Ms. Vandenbeld.
    I nominate Sameer Zuberi.
    It has been moved by Ms. Vandenbeld that Sameer Zuberi be chair of the committee. Are there any further nominations?
    Go ahead, Mr. Viersen.
    I second that nomination.
    Thank you, Mr. Viersen.
    Is it the pleasure of the subcommittee to adopt the motion?
    (Motion agreed to)
    The Clerk: I declare the motion carried and Mr. Zuberi duly elected as chair of the subcommittee.
    Some hon. members: Hear, hear!
    Colleagues—dare I say friends—I'm humbled and honoured to shepherd our committee. I hope that we can do some great work together to advance the cause of human rights internationally and to lean into tough conversations, even when they're sometimes uncomfortable.
     I'll leave it at that. I'm looking forward to working with both the clerk and analyst and all of us together.
    Mr. Chair, may I raise an issue?
    We're going to move in camera to discuss committee business. Is there something you'd like to...?
    Go ahead, Ms. McPherson.
    I'd like to table a motion, if I could. It's a discussion I wouldn't mind having.
     There is a delegation from Colombia in town. They requested an audience with this subcommittee and were told that might be possible, but because we didn't have a chair, there was nobody to make that decision on whether or not they could come.
    I'm wondering whether or not the committee would be interested in having them come to perhaps the second hour, assuming that we can get through the work that we need to do in the first hour. Could I move a motion to invite them later on today?
    We have a hand raised.
    Go ahead, Mr. Ehsassi.
    My understanding was that, if we did do such a thing, then it would set a precedent for other groups who would very much like to appear at our committee, including, of course, members of the Haitian community. Initially we had considered the possibility of doing a one-day report on them. For those reasons, when the clerk brought that to my attention, she asked what I thought. I said, I didn't think that it was fair to other communities, because then we'd face the prospect of dealing with numerous communities on a daily basis.
    I see Ms. McPherson nodding and saying okay. Hopefully that works with everybody here.
    If there isn't anything else, then we should all be moving into a closed in camera session. We'll suspend for five minutes and move to in camera.
    [Proceedings continue in camera]
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