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13 August 2018, 03:29 | Glen Norman
A spat between Saudi Arabia and Canada escalated after the Canadian Foreign Minister called for the release of women’s-rights activistsMore
In March 2015, Saudi Arabia recalled its ambassador from Stockholm over criticism by the Swedish foreign minister of Riyadh's human rights record.
Despite sharing Canada's concerns over the treatment of Saudi women activists and the state of human right in the kingdom, European Union seems to be staying away from the political minefield the Ottawa-Riyadh row presents.
Germany and Sweden had previously been entangled in disputes with Riyadh.
Canada's Minister of Foreign Affairs Chrystia Freeland is joined by High Representative for the European Union's Foreign Affairs Federica Mogherini prior to a reception at the Royal Ontario Museum on the first day of meetings for foreign ministers from G7 countries in Toronto, Ontario, Canada April 22, 2018.
Further straining ties, the Saudi central bank has instructed its overseas asset managers to dispose of their Canadian equities, bonds and cash holdings "no matter the cost", the Financial Times reported.
Canada exported CA$1.37 billion worth of goods to Saudi Arabia a year ago, mostly tanks and other armored fighting vehicles and their parts, according to Statistics Canada.
He added that Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir and Freeland had spoken by phone on Tuesday and those conversations are expected to continue.
Moe said Canada has recently seen challenges in its relationship with India, China and now Saudi Arabia.
On Wednesday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau stood firm, saying: "Canada will always speak strongly and clearly in private and in public on questions of human rights ... at home and overseas, wherever we see the need". "Canada made a big mistake. and a mistake should be corrected".
"We should lead by example with them, not sort of bludgeon our trading partners with our Canadian principles".
Saudi Arabian medical residents and clinical fellows are finding themselves in the middle of the escalating diplomatic spat between the kingdom and Canada.
The intensity of Saudi Arabia's response has puzzled many, who say it is an extreme reaction to a relatively tame tweet that isn't much different from what Canada has said before. "I respect the rights of individual countries to make their decisions and speak for themselves".
A trip package can cost around CAN$15,000 and Omar Alghabra of the Canadian Foreign Affairs Ministry said there is a lot of "legitimate anxiety".
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau backed Freeland.
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