National Newswatch

Conservatives win all-party support of Uighur genocide vote in House of Commons

Feb 22 2021 — Mike Blanchfield — OTTAWA — Canada's House of Commons voted unanimously in favour Monday of a Conservative motion declaring as genocide the atrocities committed against ethnic Muslim Uighurs in China's Xinjiang province. Liberal backbenchers answered the Conservative call to back what was a largely symbolic declaration. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and all but one of his cabinet ministers […]

Chinese ambassador denounces pending vote by Canadian MPs on Uighur genocide

Feb 20 2021 — Mike Blanchfield — OTTAWA — China's envoy to Canada is telling Canadian parliamentarians to butt out of his country's internal affairs through their pending vote on declaring a genocide against ethnic Muslim Uighurs in its Xinjiang province. Cong Peiwu, the Chinese ambassador to Canada, reiterated his government's view that there is no mistreatment of Uighurs, labelling accusations from […]

Trudeau pledges more cash as G7 leaders aim for wider COVID-19 vaccine distribution

Feb 19 2021 — Mike Blanchfield — OTTAWA — The federal government has agreed to boost its funding for vaccine rollouts in lower-income countries, pledging $75 million more to the COVAX international vaccine-sharing program as other wealthy countries step up their commitments as well. The announcement came as British Prime Minister Boris Johnson hosted Justin Trudeau and their G7 counterparts for a […]

Canada, dozens of allies, declare arbitrary detentions immoral amid Kovrig, Spavor

Feb 15 2021 — Mike Blanchfield — OTTAWA — Canada and a coalition of 57 other countries offered vocal support Monday for a new international declaration denouncing state-sponsored arbitrary detention of foreign nationals for political purposes. The new declaration was born out of a year of behind-the-scenes diplomacy, spearheaded by former foreign affairs minister François-Philippe Champagne, and was the result of a […]

World economy will lose trillions if poor countries shorted on vaccines: OECD

Feb 9 2021 — Mike Blanchfield — OTTAWA — As the Trudeau government is forced to explain delays rolling out COVID-19 vaccines, some of the world's economic and health leaders are warning of catastrophic financial consequences if poorer countries are shortchanged on vaccinations. At a video meeting convened by the Paris-based Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) on Monday, Secretary-General Angel […]

Foreign interference by Saudi Arabia, China, Rwanda hurts democracy: report

Feb 4 2021 — Mike Blanchfield — OTTAWA — A groundbreaking new report details how countries such as Saudi Arabia, China and Rwanda are meddling in democratic countries, including Canada, to harass, threaten and commit violence against their citizens living abroad. The report by Freedom House on "transnational repression" is believed to be the first broad attempt to provide a global overview […]

Ramp up Canadian vaccine manufacturing, says COVID-19 task force health adviser

Jan 30 2021 — Mike Blanchfield — OTTAWA — A leading Canadian health expert on the federal government's COVID-19 Task Force says the pandemic should be viewed as a wake-up call for Canada to create its own domestic vaccine manufacturing capacity.  Dr. Alan Bernstein says that with new variants of the novel coronavirus emerging, Canadians might need multiple vaccines for several years. […]

EU health official blasts slow vaccine delivery, and is consulting with Canada

Jan 27 2021 — Mike Blanchfield — OTTAWA — The Trudeau government is being urged to follow the tough talk of Europe's health minister, who Wednesday accused a vaccine company of not living up to its moral and legal obligations because of delivery delays. Vaccine maker AstraZeneca was the recipient of the scathing message from Stella Kyriakides, European commissioner for health and […]