Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives with former Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion and Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan at the NATO summit in Warsaw on July 8, 2016. (Photo: Adrian Wyld/CP)Justice Daniele Tremblay-Lamer ruled that the court's role was not to "pass moral judgment" on the decision by then-foreign affairs minister Stephane Dion to issue export permits allowing the deal.
No evidence weapons used on own population: LiberalsBut it said it had no evidence that Saudi Arabia specifically used the military hardware to crack down on its own population. It also said that there was no evidence that they were linked to UN-documented rights abuses in neighbouring Yemen, where Saudi Arabia was conducting airstrikes. The federal government concluded that Saudi Arabia was a strategic ally in the Middle East in the fight against Islamic militants. Turp argued that Dion's approval of the exports was flawed because it was "guided by considerations other than respect for fundamental rights and international humanitarian law." Turp argued that the approval of export permits violated the Export and Import Permits Act and the Geneva Conventions Act.
Feds argue human rights were consideredThe government countered that it properly assessed the decision and took the human rights issues into consideration — a position that the Federal Court has accepted. "The fact that there have been no incidents in which LAVs have been used in human rights violations in Saudi Arabia since trade relations between that country and Canada began in the 1990s is significant evidence in the context of this assessment," the ruling said.
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