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US attacks on PM Trudeau spark anger in Canada

12 June 2018 15:39

 

The lower house of Canada’s parliament has unanimously condemned the recent personal attacks on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau by US President Donald Trump and other American officials, which have offended Canadian elites and ordinary citizens amid a dispute over trade.

Lawmakers at the House of Commons on Monday unanimously adopted a motion backing Canadian steel and aluminum trade policies, as well as the supply management system that supports key agricultural sectors.

The motion, introduced by the opposition New Democrats, also rejected “disparaging and ad hominem statements by US officials, which do a disservice to bilateral relations and work against efforts to resolve this trade dispute.”

They also endorsed with a standing ovation the Trudeau government’s decision to impose tariffs on US goods in retaliation for the Trump administration’s levying of tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum.

The vote of solidarity came as top White House advisers lashed out at Trudeau on Sunday a day after US President Donald Trump called him “very dishonest and weak” and withdrew support for a Group of Seven communiqué issued at the summit Trudeau hosted in Quebec on Saturday.

Trump attended that summit and only later withdrew support for the communiqué.

White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow accused Trudeau of betraying Trump with “polarizing” remarks.

Trade adviser Peter Navarro attacked the Canadian prime minister even more personally.

“There is a special place in hell for any leader that engages in bad faith diplomacy with President Donald J. Trump and then tries to stab him in the back on the way out the door and that’s what bad-faith Justin Trudeau did with that stunt press conference, that’s what weak, dishonest Justin Trudeau did,” Navarro said on CNN.

Trudeau’s government has ignored the personal insults.

US President Donald Trump (L) and Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (R) stand together during the welcome ceremony on the first day of the G7 Summit, in La Malbaie, Canada, on June 8, 2018. (Photo by AFP)

The US barbs come after Trudeau said at a news conference at the end of the G7 conference that Canada would not be pushed around on tariffs — a point he had made several times before.

Other Canadian politicians have also decried the attacks by the US officials. Canadian pundits, celebrities, and ordinary citizens have also taken offense, and have pledged to take part in consumer boycotts of American goods and brainstormed insults of Trump on social media.

“Something strange and wonderful has been sparked by @realDonaldTrump’s dishonorable comments about this country. I think it might be a Canadian identity,” newspaper columnist John Ivison said on his Twitter account.

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