Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Tories blame Ignatieff for losing bid for UN seat
After losing its bid for a coveted seat on the UN Security Council to Portugal on Tuesday, the Conservative government responded by defending its campaign and blaming Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff.
“I do not think that this is a repudiation of Canada’s foreign policy,” Foreign Minister Lawrence Cannon told reporters Tuesday afternoon. “Canada ran a campaign based on principle; we ran a strong campaign. Unfortunately, back home in Canada, the leader of the opposition determined that Canada does not speak with one voice.
“In my view, (Ignatieff’s statements) were used as an issue to prevent Canada from succeeding to the Security Council.”
Ignatieff had accused the Harper government of ignoring the UN during its four years in office.
“This is a government that for four years has basically ignored the United Nations and now is suddenly showing up saying, ‘Hey, put us on the council,'” Ignatieff said in September.
Ignatieff responded Tuesday afternoon by saying it was a “sad day” for Canada and the international community has sent the Conservatives a message.
“This is the first time in sixty years we’ve failed to secure a seat on an institution that this country helped found,” he told reporters, noting the roles in the UN played by former prime ministers Lester Pearson and Brian Mulroney. “This is a pretty depressing story about the government’s performance on foreign policy.”
Ignatieff called the blame the Tories laid at his feet “ridiculous. (Source: CTV News)