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e-2586 (Foreign affairs)

E-petition
Initiated by Guy Roy from Lévis, Quebec

Original language of petition: French

Petition to the Government of Canada

Whereas:
  • The blockade of Cuba has lasted 60 years, and Canada is opposed to it;
  • The United States’s threat of military intervention against Venezuela persists today, and the Lima Group, of which Canada is a member, is opposed to such intervention;
  • President Trump prohibited exports of medical supplies to South America from the United States;
  • The United States’s position poses a serious threat to the residents of these countries, particularly during the coronavirus pandemic; and
  • Cuba sent doctors to several countries around the world to help fight the pandemic.
We, the undersigned, residents of Canada, call upon the Government of Canada to reiterate to the United States, through the Minister of Foreign Affairs, its opposition to any military intervention in Venezuela, in accordance with its position in the Lima Group, and to call for the lifting of the blockade of Cuba and the restrictions on shipments of medical supplies from the United States to South America, as it did for itself.

Response by the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Signed by (Minister or Parliamentary Secretary): The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne

The Government of Canada is deeply concerned by the political, economic and humanitarian crisis in Venezuela and by the suffering of the Venezuelan people, which has led to a massive outflow of millions of Venezuelans to countries in the region. The COVID-19 pandemic is greatly exacerbating the situation. Canada continues to support the humanitarian and development response to the crisis and calls for full and unhindered access inside Venezuela to allow for the provision of much-needed humanitarian assistance to the most vulnerable and crisis-affected populations, in line with international humanitarian principles.  Since February 2019, Canada has contributed over $82 million to support those affected by the Venezuela crisis, including support for experienced humanitarian organizations that provide urgent life-saving assistance—such as food, health care, and water and sanitation—to vulnerable and crisis-affected populations across the region.

Canada and other Lima Group members continue to advocate for a peaceful transition to democracy led by Venezuelans themselves.  The Lima Group expressed its views most recently on October 13, 2020, including a firm rejection of the continuing illegitimate regime of Nicolas Maduro in holding parliamentary elections without minimum democratic guarantees. Canada believes that a peaceful political solution is needed more than ever and we remain fully committed to continuing to support efforts to that end.

Canada is also committed to cooperating with partners across the hemisphere to face the pandemic and its consequences. As part of its COVID-19 response, Canada is providing $9.5 million to help 23 countries in the region to manage the impacts of the pandemic, and support their recovery and resilience moving forward. Canada is also ensuring that international assistance initiatives in our partner countries in the region continue to support longer-term development objectives, while also responding to the immediate needs of vulnerable populations affected by COVID-19. We continue to deliver projects focused on gender equality, climate change, health, education, food security, governance, and human rights.

Canada has made significant investments to ensure that COVID-19 vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics are affordable and equitably distributed globally. Canada has been consistent in standing with like-minded international partners to support global trade and investment and maintain open supply chains during this health crisis, to ensure a flow of vital medical supplies and essential goods to those in need. Canada will continue advocate internationally for all countries to have access to the necessary medical supplies needed to help fight COVID-19.

In the midst of the global crisis, the embargo on Cuba has become an additional impediment to purchasing medical supplies to deal with the pandemic, as well as to receiving international aid. In this regard, Canada has also adopted measures to mitigate the extraterritorial effects of the U.S. embargo against Cuba through the enactment of the Foreign Extraterritorial Measures Act (1985) and subsequent orders.

Open for signature
May 7, 2020, at 3:27 p.m. (EDT)
Closed for signature
September 4, 2020, at 3:27 p.m. (EDT)
Presented to the House of Commons
Stéphane Bergeron (Montarville)
October 22, 2020 (Petition No. 432-00142)
Government response tabled
December 7, 2020
Photo - Stéphane Bergeron
Montarville
Bloc Québécois Caucus
Quebec
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