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Results: 1 - 15 of 181
View Caroline St-Hilaire Profile
BQ (QC)
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Are you getting the interpretation?
View Caroline St-Hilaire Profile
BQ (QC)
Ms. Ebadi, it is a pleasure to have you here. Even though we have read and heard a lot about you, it was still a very emotional experience to hear you speak this morning. I am very happy that I had this opportunity, not only as a member of Parliament, but as a woman. I just wanted to say that before I move on to my questions.
You spoke about the situation of women in Iran. On the eve of International Women's Day, what can Canada do to help Iran improve conditions for that country's women?
View Caroline St-Hilaire Profile
BQ (QC)
You mentioned that elections were not in fact free elections. Do people want the situation to change? Could free elections possibly be held in your country? That would be a step in the right direction.
View Caroline St-Hilaire Profile
BQ (QC)
View Caroline St-Hilaire Profile
BQ (QC)
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I would like to talk about my NDP colleague's motion. I do not know if the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development passed a motion to debate the case of Omar Khadr. However, I do know that a motion to that effect was tabled. In any event—perhaps those who served on this committee in the past will remember—the foreign affairs and international development committee always passes along its requests very kindly to us. Therefore, I imagine that we will be compelled to examine this matter shortly.
I thought the only item of business was the election of the chair. I did not think that we would be discussing future business. I would like us to keep the book open and not finalize things this afternoon. I would like the committee to reconsider the Cuba question. Twice we have started our study, and both times we have not finished our work. Some changes have recently taken place in Cuba. I think it is our duty to see this study through to the end.
That's all for now.
View Caroline St-Hilaire Profile
BQ (QC)
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
We all agree that subcommittee members are disenchanted and feel that their efforts are wasted. The report on China is a good example of this malaise.
Foreign affairs matters are also at issue. I would not want to be publicly chastised by the foreign affairs and international development committee. We are the ones who worked on this file and I would not want to make public, through some roundabout way, something that people do not wish to make public for one reason or another.
Our first challenge would be to have the chair find out what the subcommittee needs to do to become a full committee. I do not know what the procedure for that is. Must the leaders or the whips become involved? Must we make a specific request? Almost everyone seated at this table agrees that this is a challenge worth pursuing. Human rights are an important topic, but this is a subcommittee and I feel that this is viewed as a secondary topic. We have neither a human rights minister, nor a human rights committee. Perhaps this is a battle that the subcommittee should take up, instead of taking a difficult route to do things it does not necessarily have the right to do.
View Caroline St-Hilaire Profile
BQ (QC)
So then, the committee would meet for only one hour?
View Caroline St-Hilaire Profile
BQ (QC)
I would like to welcome our guests first, but I certainly also want to return the volley from my honourable colleague. I am speaking as an individual. If I refuse to support the Conservative party's motion—who like to lecture us, which is always very amusing—it is not about the substance but mostly about the form. I feel that eventually, we will have to ask the question again and re-evaluate the situation. We have no lesson to learn from our colleagues opposite.
That said, gentlemen, you too have surely read Michèle Ouimet's article on the situation in Pakistan. I have read it, and, as I listened to you earlier, I got the impression that she did not go to the same place as you did. She finds things in Pakistan very troubling. But you say that poverty is not such a big problem and the education of girls is not going too badly.
Lastly, I wonder if the Pakistani government is not speaking out of both sides of its mouth. Internally, the discourse seems to be pro-Islamic in order to get the people on their side. Outside, the discourse is more conciliatory in order to win support from the Government of Canada, for example.
View Caroline St-Hilaire Profile
BQ (QC)
I have another question; I am no expert in the area. Do you really think that it is possible to have a democratic election in a country where people are killed for owning a record store? I cannot imagine how that can be possible.
View Caroline St-Hilaire Profile
BQ (QC)
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Ms. Oda, Mr. Bernier, gentlemen, thank you for being here this afternoon.
I will start with Mr. Bernier, and then continue with Ms. Oda. I will be splitting my time with Mr. Bachand, if we may, of course.
Mr. Bernier, you will understand my surprise, to put it mildly, to hear you suggest that we have a debate that is as non-partisan as possible on the Afghanistan question. I would remind you that in your own throne speech, you talked about extending the mission to 2011. You undoubtedly know that the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development has been examining the Afghanistan question for over a year. I don't think that committee can be described as partisan.
As well, when we examine the four options, I note that your Prime Minister has already aligned the work of the committee of unelected—I take that back. You have already aligned your own position. I must say that this is paradoxical. We want the Government of Canada to impose democracy in Afghanistan, but we are not capable of respecting parliamentarians, the people's representatives, right here.
I can tell you that this makes me somewhat uneasy. Perhaps you could respond to my unease.
View Caroline St-Hilaire Profile
BQ (QC)
So I understand that you will listen to the recommendations of the Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Relations, but I also want to raise the fact that in your options, Mr. Bernier, there is no reference to development or to diplomacy. I say this with all due respect.
I will conclude this topic by questioning Ms. Oda.
Ms. Oda, in your presentation, you said a number of things, in particular concerning accountability. I would like to go back to what my colleague Mr. Patry said about accountability.
Your CIDA officials came here and talked to us a little about grants versus contributions. One of the things they said was that today there are more grants than contributions, and that ultimately this means that you don't have to hold anyone accountable for the money you give out.
I would like to know how you can really talk to this committee about transparency and effectiveness when, ultimately, you are losing control over the grants you make. Would it not be appropriate to allocate a specific amount for evaluations?
View Caroline St-Hilaire Profile
BQ (QC)
Thank you, Mr. Chair. I will be brief because I know that my colleague has another question to ask.
Ms. Oda, since you have been in your office, you must certainly have noticed how great the need is just about everywhere. I have also heard that you could easily be a persuasive woman.
With the budget approaching, how do you intend, in concrete terms, to persuade your Minister of Finance to ensure that Canada achieves its objective, which, I would remind you, is 0.7% of GDP in public development assistance? I would like to know in concrete terms. Don't talk to me about the 8% increase, because you know very well that you have do to a lot more than that to achieve that objective.
View Caroline St-Hilaire Profile
BQ (QC)
Ambassador, thank you for being here today.
I would perhaps like to hear you pursue your explanations. Indeed, you stated in very thinly veiled terms that you hope that Canada will stay on after 2009, or in any event, that you were not ready for post-2009. I understand that beyond that date, you are concerned that the government and the people might not be ready...
View Caroline St-Hilaire Profile
BQ (QC)
That is what you foresee for after 2009.
In fact, for the benefit of the Committee perhaps, I would like you to tell us what it would take for Afghanistan to be ready, for your government to be ready for what will come after.
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