Time for answers: Letter to Trudeau on the Saudi arms deal

Ploughshares Featured 2 Comments

Canadians have been waiting for answers for more than three months since you first indicated that your government is looking at this question. More crucially, the people of Yemen have been waiting for that answer, and an assurance that Canada is prepared to act decisively to avoid contributing to war crimes in their country, for those same agonizing three months. It is time, Prime Minister, to assure Canadians and Yemenis that Canadian-made LAVs will not be going to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Sincerely,

Action contre la faim Canada Amnesty International Canada (English branch) Amnistie internationale Canada francophone Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East Group of 78 Médecins du Monde Canada Oxfam Canada Oxfam-Québec Project Ploughshares Rideau

Canadian Council of Churches urges Ottawa to support nuclear ban treaty

Ploughshares Featured, News, Nuclear Weapons, Publication 1 Comment

December 21, 2018

The Right Honourable Justin Trudeau, P.C., M.P. Prime Minister of Canada Office of the Prime Minister 80 Wellington Street Ottawa, ON K1A 0A2

Email: pm@pm.gc.ca

Re: The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons

Dear Prime Minister Trudeau

We, the undersigned, representing all 26 member denominations of The Canadian Council of Churches, write to urge that the Government of Canada support the United Nations Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.

Click on image to read full letter.

Social media and conflict

Branka Marijan Featured Leave a Comment

…infamous radio station Radio Télévision des Mille Collines in Rwanda broadcast propaganda against Tutsis, moderate Hutus, Belgians, and the UN peacekeeping mission in July 1994, creating an atmosphere that almost certainly contributed to the genocide that followed.

However, researchers and political analysts who study social media agree that virtually instantaneous transmission and the ability of anyone with a cellphone to share information is making more information available and changing how such information is used.

More and more, militaries are building social media into their strategies and tactics. The Canadian armed forces are considering new ways to respond to disinformation campaigns, recruiting staff with social-media skills, and engaging with the Canadian public on social-media platforms. The belief is growing around the…

Bill C-47: Remarks to the Senate Standing Committee

Cesar Jaramillo Conventional Weapons, Featured Leave a Comment

treatment afforded to the U.S. is obviously out of line with the expectations of consistency, objectivity, and non-discrimination specified in article 5.

Such exemptions would be incompatible with ATT obligations regardless of the recipient. In the case of the United States, they are especially problematic. The United States is the largest exporter of weapons and military equipment in the world. Canadian components can be incorporated into systems in the United States and then exported to third parties without requiring further authorization from Canada.

The United States is also, by far, the largest recipient of Canadian military goods. Despite the lack of transparency in this regard, Project Ploughshares estimates that Canadian exports of military goods to the U.S. are worth as…

Canada and the Global Compact on Refugees

Sonal Marwah Featured, Forced Displacement and Migration Leave a Comment

…traditional durable solutions (resettlement, voluntary repatriation, and local integration), as well as other solutions and complementary pathways. Canada must acknowledge this responsibility and respond appropriately.

2. The need for policy coherence when responding to refugees

The current Canadian government has adopted a whole-of-government framework in which departments (Economic Affairs, Social Affairs, International Affairs, and Government Affairs) align their program activities and policies to achieve shared outcomes. To realize Canada’s commitments to the GCR, these departments must harmonize policies that relate to forced displacement and refugees.

For example, it is hypocritical for Canada to publicly condemn gross human-rights abuses in Saudi Arabia, including a pattern of gender-based repression, while permitting the sale of $15-billion of military equipment to the Saudi government…

We are ready for 2019

Cesar Jaramillo Conventional Weapons, Defence & Human Security, Featured, Forced Displacement and Migration, Nuclear Weapons, Space Security Leave a Comment

…Collaboration with a coalition of Canadian human rights, disarmament, and development civil-society organizations to address shortcomings in the Canadian government’s proposed legislation on accession to the Arms Trade Treaty (Bill C-47); Participation as a member of the international Control Arms Coalition in multilateral conferences on the Arms Trade Treaty, including the 4th Conference of ATT States Parties. Refugees and forced migration Collaboration with The Canadian Council of Churches on a legal challenge to the Safe Third Country Agreement, which prevents most migrants that enter Canada from the United States from claiming refugee status; Continued research and analysis on governance related to displaced persons, on such topics as the global compacts on migration and refugees, and the refugee crisis in the…

The War in Yemen: 2011-2018: The elusive road to peace

Sonal Marwah Defence & Human Security, Featured, Forced Displacement and Migration Leave a Comment

PDF download

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Working paper 18-1 November 2018

By Sonal Marwah and Tom Clark

Executive summary

The United Nations (UN) has played a key role in most recent peace processes, but has not, thus far, been an effective force for peace in Yemen, which is now the site of one of the world’s bloodiest internationalized civil wars. Instead, the flow of the conflict has been dominated by the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), in which Saudi Arabia plays a leading role.

The military attacks on behalf of the internationally recognized Yemeni government by a coalition of Middle Eastern states led by Saudi Arabia (“the coalition”), which began

A call for leadership: New report details security concerns in outer space

Jessica West Leave a Comment

2018 was produced by civil society and academic organizations under the leadership of Canadian nonprofit organization Project Ploughshares. Partners include The Simons Foundation Canada; the Institute of Air and Space Law at McGill University in Montreal, Quebec; the Space Policy Institute at The George Washington University in Washington, DC; the Research Unit on Military Law and Ethics at the University of Adelaide Law School in Australia; and the School of Law at Xi’an Jiaotong University in China.

For more information contact:

Jessica West, Managing Editor

Project Ploughshares

140 Westmount Road North, Waterloo, ON

Canada

519-954-1156

In the photograph (from left): Peter Martinez (Secure World Foundation), Rosemary McCarney (Canadian Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations and the Conference on…

Are emerging technologies making us safer?

Branka Marijan Featured Leave a Comment

States and Russia. The most notable public response has been revulsion, often referred to as the “ick factor.”

The number and sophistication of autonomous systems are bound to increase in the next few years. Already, countries are working to address the “trust deficit” of their citizens, so that they will come to accept and, yes, trust these new military and security applications as safe and beneficial.

The Canadian context

The Canadian government is among those interested in developing autonomous systems for security and defence applications. The Department of National Defence (DND) is already focusing on solving the issue of public trust. Recently, DND put out a call for proposals on the theme of “Autonomous Systems for Defence and Security: Trust…

Inaccessible? Untangling the current U.S. refugee program

Sonal Marwah Leave a Comment

…In 2017, 20,000 people made irregular crossings into Canada to claim asylum.

As Canadian policymakers, civil society organizations, and immigration attorneys scramble to navigate the new and frequently altering immigration landscape to the south of us, it is worth placing some key elements of the current refugee program in the United States in context.

Slashing the U.S. refugee resettlement cap

The Trump administration has capped the resettlement of refugees at 45,000 refugees for FY2018, a decrease from the previous year’s total of 53,700. This is the lowest cap since the passing of the Refugee Act of 1980, which created the Federal Refugee Resettlement Program. During the last year of the Obama administration, the cap was 110,000.

Only about 20,000 refugees…