Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced a new Canadian tourism marketing campaign in China on Wednesday during the first full day of his trade mission in the Middle Kingdom, urging Chinese travellers to spend their tourism dollars in Canada.
Rami Abdulrahman of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said 111 civilians and activists were killed in addition to over 100 casualties among army deserters in Idlib province, turning Tuesday into the “bloodiest day of the Syrian revolution.”
“There was a massacre of an unprecedented scale in Syria on Tuesday,” said French foreign ministry spokesman Bernard Valero. “It is urgent that the UN Security Council issues a firm resolution that calls for an end to the repression.”
Bush is expected to attend an economic summit in Surrey in Canada’s westernmost British Columbia province on October 20.
The London-based group charged that Bush has legal responsibility for a series of human rights violations in a memorandum submitted last month to Canada’s attorney general but only now released to the media.
“Canada is required by its international obligations to arrest and prosecute former president Bush given his responsibility for crimes under international law including torture,” Amnesty’s Susan Lee said in a statement.
“As the U.S. authorities have, so far, failed to bring former president Bush to justice, the international community must step in. A failure by Canada to take action during his visit would violate the UN Convention Against Torture and demonstrate contempt for fundamental human rights,” Lee said. (Photo: Larry Downing/Reuters)
‘Virginity tests’ done, general says An Egyptian general said the military conducted forced “virginity tests” on female protesters in March, actions that have outraged Egyptian activists who called for demonstrations to condemn the incident.
“The girls who were detained were not like your daughter or mine,” the general, who did not want to be named, told CNN.
“We didn’t want them to say we had sexually assaulted or raped them, so we wanted to prove that they weren’t virgins in the first place.
“These were girls who had camped out in tents with male protesters in Tahrir Square, and we found in the tents Molotov cocktails and [drugs],” he said.
Amnesty International had previously called on the government to investigate accusations that the army tortured and abused women arrested in the protests. (Miguel Medina/AFP/Getty Images)
Jonathan Kay: Bin Laden’s killing shows us the irrelevance of “international law” This past week, the NDP’s Thomas Mulcair became a figure of ridicule for suggesting that the United States doesn’t have photos of Osama bin Laden’s body — presumably, in his imagination, because the al-Qaeda leader isn’t really dead. But Mr. Mulcair made another interesting comment about the U.S. raid, which did not get as much attention: “We have to understand whether or not there was an action of self defence or whether there was something that was more in the style of a direct killing and that has to do with American law and with international law as well.”
The idea that the legitimacy of this brilliantly executed American raid might be cast into doubt by the dogmas of “international law” can only be described as quaint — the sort of debating point that would have been taken seriously when the Twin Towers were still standing. In 2011, it sounds only slightly less marginal than the idea that bin Laden still walks the earth.
The exact moment when we knew “international law” had little to say about the war against terrorism came on November 3, 2002. That was the day an American Predator drone, flying high above the Yemeni outback 100 miles east of Sanaa, fired a Hellfire missile into a car containing al-Qaeda’s local commander, Abu Ali al-Harithi, and five jihadi comrades. Photos of the scene show a black hole in the ground where the car once stood — a suitable metaphor for the once-fashionable notion that “international law” trumps a nation’s right to defend itself. (Illustration: Richard Johnson/National Post)
France enacts ban on face veils France’s ban on full face veils, a first in Europe, went into force on Monday, making anyone wearing the Muslim niqab or burqa in public liable to a fine of 150 euros (US$216) or lessons in French citizenship.
Photo: Kenza Drider, a French Muslim of North African descent, wears a niqab outside the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, April 11, 2011. (Gonzalo Fuentes/Reuters)
Gaddafi forces move in on western border Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi deployed forces to a western border area on Tuesday in defiance of Western military and economic pressure, raising fears that one of the bloodiest Arab revolts may become more violent still.
David Frum: Gaddafi learns a lesson in fair weather friendship It’s been a bad 24 hours for Muammar Gaddafi. The Obama administration has urged that Libya be expelled from the UN Human Rights Council. Switzerland has frozen his assets. Human rights groups of various stripes are urging intervention. It all makes you wonder: where were they a month ago, when Qaddafi was just as heinous as he is today?