Mr. Ted Opitz (Etobicoke Centre, CPC):
Mr. Speaker, the media has recently been reporting on clashes near Tahrir Square. Canadians are rightly concerned about the difficult transition from the Mubarak regime to a democratically elected and legitimate government of Egypt.
As the House knows, Canada has played a significant role in assisting the Arab spring, as well as supporting democratic aspirations of the people of northern Africa and the Middle East.
In this regard, I would ask the Minister of Foreign Affairs to please give the House an update on the Canadian government’s reactions to these most troubling media reports.
Hon. John Baird (Minister of Foreign Affairs, CPC):
Mr. Speaker, I think I can speak for all members of the House that we are outraged when we see the violence in Tahrir Square when people are seeking to peacefully protest. We are outraged when we see Coptic Christians in Egypt being targeted and many being killed.
We are calling on all sides to work co-operatively toward the elections that are coming up this Monday and to ensure that democracy will outweigh the violence that we have seen in recent days.