Saudi Arabia Using Canadian-Made Armored Vehicles against Own Citizens!
For the first time, video footage and photos surfaced on social media showing the Saudi kingdom using Canadian weaponized equipment against Saudi civilians - a development that spurred calls Friday for the Canadian government to halt military exports to the oil-rich nation.
Military experts consulted by The Globe identified the machines appearing in these videos and photos as Gurkha RPVs, produced by Terradyne Armored Vehicles in Newmarket, Ont., north of Toronto.
The House of Saud's use of combat machines against its Shia population in the eastern part of the country, goes to the very heart of the controversy over whether the Trudeau government is violating Canada's weapons export-control rules, particularly with a $15-billion sale of weaponized armored vehicles to Riyadh for which the Liberal Candians approved export permits in 2016.
Canada's export-control rules call for restrictions on arms exports to countries that have "poor human-rights records" and a "record of serious violations of the human rights of their citizens." Shipments are supposed to be blocked if there is a chance the buyer could turn the arms against its own population.
In recent days, the Sunni regime has escalated its violent crackdown against the country's Eastern Province. Until now, dozens of Shia activists and migrant workers living in that area have lost their lives since the Saudi regime forces started a campaign that allegedly aims at ‘developing' Awamia, but is indeed intended to displace Shia citizens from their houses and hometown in the al-Qatif region.
The Saudis have brought in more weaponry to bolster their tactical forces, and videos and photos circulated by activists on the Internet show these additional assets include armored vehicles produced by Terradyne Armored Vehicles.
Meanwhile, Amnesty International Canada secretary-general Alex Neve called on Canada to stop armored-vehicle exports to Saudi Arabia, including the $15-billion deal to supply Riyadh with light armored vehicles [LAVs] equipped with machine guns and anti-tank cannons that are being produced in London, Ont., by contractor General Dynamics Land Systems.
"Indications that Canadian-made armored vehicles are perhaps being utilized as Saudi forces mobilize in the east of the country highlight how crucial it is that the government intervene and put an immediate end to the Canadian/Saudi LAV deal," Mr. Neve said.
Conservative foreign affairs critic Peter Kent said Friday that an investigation now is necessary - and called on the Liberals to terminate export permits if there is "hard evidence" the Canadian weaponized armored vehicles are being used against Saudi Arabia's Shia minority.
The most recent conflict in Eastern Province began to flare up in early 2017, when Saudi Arabia sought to raze a minority Shia Muslim neighborhood in al-Qatif.
Al-Mosawara, a 400-year-old walled quarter in Awamia, a village in the al-Qatif region bordering the Persian Gulf, has been the flashpoint in the Saudi campaign against Shia minority.
Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team