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August 29, 2014 – Ottawa, Ontario
Check Against Delivery
Good morning and thank you all for coming.
Canada remains very concerned with the escalating humanitarian and security situation in Iraq.
Violence has displaced well over a million people.
And countless more remain under threat.
Canada continues to condemn the terrorist actions of ISIL, and the killing of civilians in northern Iraq, in the strongest possible terms.
Particularly concerning is the ongoing, targeted persecution of religious minorities.
Which only inflames sectarian tensions among Iraqis.
Canada has committed over $21 million in humanitarian assistance in Iraq so far this year.
And we remain steadfast in our support of the people and Government of Iraq, as they confront this terrorist threat.
The humanitarian needs of innocent civilians, particularly in Northern Iraq, are pressing.
In response, I have authorized the deployment of Canada’s emergency relief stockpiles.
Canada’s stockpiles are designed to meet basic, life-saving needs.
The supplies include things like:
• kitchen sets, and
• hygiene kits.
These items are being deployed from Canada’s new stockpile in Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates.
This emergency relief stockpile is a key example of the strong relationship between Canada and the United Arab Emirates.
This new, strategically placed stockpile, will allow Canada to respond more rapidly and efficiently to events in Africa and Asia.
By maintaining stockpiles on both sides of the globe we will reach people more rapidly.
And ultimately save more lives.
This stockpile will be managed by the Canadian Red Cross, as is Canada’s other stockpile in Mississauga, Ontario.
The facility in Dubai is already fully operational.
And this is the first time emergency relief supplies from this stockpile are being deployed.
The life-saving items will be managed and distributed in Northern Iraq by Save the Children.
Canada’s stockpiles are ready to be shipped around the world on a moment’s notice.
Because, in times of crisis, quickly delivering essential supplies can be a matter of life and death.
This follows the Prime Minister’s announcement earlier today that the Royal Canadian Air Force has completed its first delivery of military equipment donated by the Republic of Albania, to security forces in Iraq fighting ISIL.
As the Prime Minister stated, over one million Iraqis have been displaced by ISIL, which has been carrying out a murderous rampage in northern Iraq since early this year, seizing territory and systematically killing children, women and men.
The delivery of these military supplies to the security forces protecting the displaced Iraqis and fighting ISIL will help improve the precarious security situation in the country.
Left unchecked, ISIL is a threat not only to peace and security in the region, but to global security as well.
Through these and other measures, Canada, in coordination with our allies, will continue to support the people and Government of Iraq in their fight against terrorism.
I will now take your questions.