Canada upholds $15 billion Saudi arms deal after Khashoggi murder
29 October 2018
In the nearly four weeks since the Saudi regime had journalist Jamal Khashoggi murdered, Canada’s Liberal government has gone out of its way to avoid criticizing Riyadh, while insisting Canada must fulfill a $15 billion arms deal with the kingdom—a linchpin of US imperialism’s domination of the oil-rich Middle East.
A Saudi citizen, Khashoggi disappeared after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul October 2 to obtain divorce papers needed to marry his Turkish fiancé. In the three weeks since his disappearance became internationally known, the Saudi regime has desperately attempted to deny responsibility. Initially it claimed that Khashoggi left the embassy, then that he had died during a “fist fight.” More recently, it has said he was the victim of a premeditated murder carried out by “rogue” elements in the Saudi security forces.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has avoided publicly accusing Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, the kingdom’s effective ruler, of ordering Khashoggi’s murder. But Turkish authorities have systematically leaked information contradicting Riyadh’s claims, including video of the arrival in Turkey of a 15-man Saudi assassination squad. Everything points to the Saudi journalist having been tortured and beheaded inside the consulate, then his dismembered body being smuggled out of the premises.
With public outrage over Khashoggi’s gruesome murder mounting, Prime Minster Justin Trudeau and his Liberal government have spent the past two weeks twisting and turning in the face of mounting criticism from sections of the media and opposition over its insistence that Canada must fulfill its $15 billion contract to supply Riyadh…