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Canada seeks help from allies to end tension with Saudi Arabia

Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks at a news conference in Montreal, Quebec, Canada September 17, 2016.
Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks at a news conference in Montreal, Quebec, Canada September 17, 2016. REUTERS/Christinne Muschi

Canada has asked its allies to help de-escalate tensions with Saudi Arabia, news agencies reported an informed government source saying.

The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that Canada is working quietly through backchannels to get help from its allies, including Germany and Sweden, to resolve the crisis with the oil rich Kingdom.

Canadian Foreign Minister Cristina Freeland spoke to her German and Swedish counterparts to discuss ways to resolve the dispute and asked for their help, the source said.

Ottowa has also asked the UAE and UK for help.

Both the UK and US have urged Canada and Saudi Arabia to resolve their dispute with restraint.

Bin Salman’s attack on Canada is destroying Saudi’s economy

On Wednesday, the Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he would not apologise to Saudi Arabia, stressing his country speak “clearly and firmly about human rights issues in the country and abroad” whenever needed.

Saudi Arabia recalled its ambassador to Canada last Monday, and declared the ambassador of Canada in Riyadh “persona non grata,” against the backdrop of what Riyadh called “explicit and blatant interference in the country’s internal affairs.”

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has announced “the freezing of all new trade and investment dealings with Canada and retaining its right to take further action.”

This came following the Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland’s call on Riyadh to release “civil society activists” who were arrested in the Kingdom.

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