Sale of armored vehicles to Saudi Arabia: the Supreme Court will not hear the case

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The Supreme Court of Canada refuses to hear the case of the sale of armored vehicles to Saudi Arabia.

The crusade of law professor and former Bloc and PQ MP Daniel Turp against this decision by the Canadian government is over.

As is still the case, the highest court in the country has not given reasons for its decision on Thursday.

Mr. Turp challenged the government’s decision to grant export licenses for a $15 billion military equipment transaction. The light armored vehicles in question are built in London, Ontario by General Dynamics Land Systems.

He was of the view that Canada had not analyzed the risks to civilians in Yemen before granting these export licenses for the sale of military vehicles to Saudi Arabia, a country with one of the worst human rights assessments and is currently involved in an armed conflict in Yemen.

The decision was unreasonable, he pleaded, asking that it be reviewed.

In the reasons for the judgment rendered in July 2018, the Federal Court of Appeal held that the Minister of Foreign Affairs at the time, Stephan Dion, took “all relevant factors into account” before giving the green light to the delivery of light armored vehicles.

“Not only did the minister consider economic and trade factors, but he also considered issues of humanitarian law and human rights. ”

There can be no doubt that the appellant [Daniel Turp] disagrees with the Minister’s decision, but unfortunately for [him], the assessment of the evidence for purposes of granting or not granting export licenses was entrusted to the Minister by Parliament, is it written in the decision.

The $15 billion contract was signed under the Harper government, but it was the Trudeau government that granted the export permits.

Mr. Turp was dismissed by the Federal Court in January 2017 and the Federal Court of Appeal unanimously rejected his appeal in July 2018. That is why he wanted to refer the matter to the Supreme Court, which comes from refuse to reverse previous decisions.