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(Press TV, 31 March 2015) ~ Canada’s parliament has approved to expand the country’s current military mission in Iraq ‘to target ISIL terrorists’ in neighboring Syria.

The motion, ratified by 142 to 129 votes on Monday night, also extended the Iraq mission – which was due to expire on April 7 this year – until March 30, 2016.

The measure, which allows Canadian fighter jets to enter Syria and strike ISIL targets, is neither authorized by the United Nations, nor a NATO mission (…nor by Syrian government: SFP note).

Canada will be the second NATO member state, after the United States, to carry out airstrikes in Syria along with non-NATO members Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates.

Speaking in the parliament on Monday, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper defended the move, saying, “We cannot stand on the sidelines while ISIL continues to promote terrorism in Canada as well as against our allies and partners, nor can we allow ISIL to have a safe haven in Syria.”

“As a result of ISIL’s specific threats against Canada and Canadians, our government has worked closely for the past six months as part of a broad international coalition, including our closest allies, to help degrade and disrupt ISIL’s ability to inflict harm,” Harper claimed.

This is while Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has recently slammed the so-called US-led coalition purportedly targeting ISIL.

“It is possible that some of these countries don’t want ISIL expansion in Syria and Iraq, but they apparently don’t want to do away with the ISIL. They want to use this terrorist structure for threatening and blackmailing other countries,” Interfax news agency quoted Assad as saying on Thursday.

Noting that a “serious anti-terrorist operation” has not started yet, Assad said, “In terms of politics, an anti-terrorist coalition cannot consist of the countries that support terrorism.”

Since September 2014, the US along with its regional allies has been conducting airstrikes against what are said to be ISIL positions inside Syria without any authorization from Damascus or a UN mandate. This is while many of the countries joining the so-called anti-terror coalition, such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar, have been the staunch supporters of the Takfiri elements fighting the Syrian government.

The airstrikes by the US and its allies are an extension of the US-led aerial campaign against purported ISIL positions in Iraq, which started in August 2014.

The ISIL terrorists currently control swathes of territory across Syria and Iraq. They have committed terrible atrocities in both countries, including mass executions and beheading of local residents as well as foreign nationals.

Full text of the parliamentary motion:

That, whereas:

  1. (i) the terrorist group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL-DAESH) has repeatedly called on its members to target Canada and Canadians at home and abroad;
  2. (ii) ISIL poses a clear and active threat to the people of the Middle East, including members of vulnerable religious and ethnic minority groups who have been subjected to a brutal and barbaric campaign of sexual violence, murder, and intimidation by ISIL;
  3. (iii) unless confronted with strong and direct force, the threat that ISIL poses to Canada and to international peace and security, will grow;
  4. (iv) Canada desires, consistent with Canadian values and interests, to protect the vulnerable and innocent civilians of the region, including through urgent humanitarian assistance;
  5. (v) the Government of Iraq has requested military support against ISIL from members of the international community, including from the Government of Canada;
  6. (vi) Canada is part of a broad international coalition of allies and partners, including numerous countries of the Middle East, committed to the fight against ISIL;
  7. (vii) the United Nations Security Council remains seized of the threat posed by international terrorism with the unanimous passage of United Nations Security Council Resolution 2178;
  8. (viii) the deployment of Royal Canadian Air Force assets has played an important role in degrading, destabilising, and weakening ISIL’s position and operations in the region;
  9. (ix) the advise and assist mission of the Canadian Special Operations Forces in Northern Iraq has increased the capabilities of Kurdish-Iraqi Security Forces to combat ISIL; and
  10. (x) continuing to degrade ISIL will require striking its operations and infrastructure where they are located, including in Syria;

Accordingly, this House:

  • (a) continues to support the Government’s decision to contribute Canadian military assets to the fight against ISIL, and terrorists aligned with ISIL, including air strike capability with authorisation to conduct airstrikes in Iraq and Syria;
  • (b) supports the Government’s decision to extend the mission to a date not beyond March 30, 2016;
  • (c) notes that the Government continues not to deploy troops in a ground combat role; and
  • (d) offers its resolute and wholehearted support to the brave men and women of the Canadian Armed Forces who stand on guard for all of us; (Government Business No. 17)

And of the amendment of Mr. Dewar (Ottawa Centre), seconded by Ms. Michaud (Portneuf—Jacques-Cartier), — That the motion be amended by:

  • (a) replacing the words “, the threat that ISIL poses to Canada and to international peace and security, will grow” with the words “from capable and enabled local forces, the threat ISIL poses to international peace and security, including to Canadian communities, will continue to grow”;
  • (b) replacing the words “Resolution 2178” with the words “Resolutions 2170, 2178, and 2199”;
  • (c) deleting sections (viii), (ix) and (x); and
  • (d) deleting all the words after the word “Accordingly,” and substituting the following: “this House calls on the government to:
  • (a) end the participation of Canadian Forces troops in combat, airstrikes and advise-and-assist training in Iraq and Syria as soon as possible;
  • (b) boost humanitarian aid in areas where there would be immediate, life-saving impact, including assisting refugees with basic shelter and food needs, and investing in water, sanitation and hygiene, health and education for people displaced by the fighting;
  • (c) work with our allies in the region to stabilize neighbouring countries, strengthen political institutions and assist these countries in coping with an influx of refugees;
  • (d) contribute to the fight against ISIL, including military support for the transportation of weapons;
  • (e) provide assistance to investigation and prosecution of war crimes;
  • (f) increase assistance for the care and resettlement of refugees impacted by this conflict;
  • (g) work to prevent the flow of foreign fighters, finances, and resources to ISIL, in accordance with our international obligations under United Nations Security Council Resolutions 2170, 2178, and 2199;
  • (h) put forward a robust plan of support for communities and institutions working on de-radicalization and counter-radicalization;
  • (i) report back on the costs of the mission and humanitarian assistance provided to date on a monthly basis to the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development, until Canadian involvement is concluded; and
  • (j) continue to offer its resolute and wholehearted support to the brave men and women of the Canadian Forces who stand on guard for all of us.”.

source:  Journals – No. 192 (Unrevised), Monday, March 30, 2015
Parliament of Canada, 30 March 2015


R E L A T E D :

Monsieur Stephen Harper, que vont faire nos soldats en Syrie?
par Oscar Fortin, 21 mars 2015

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper-300

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper


Journals N. 192
Humanisme by Oscar Fortin
Submitted by Cem Ertür
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