July 16th, 2024

Canada’s defence minister says Hamas a threat to world, must be ‘eliminated’

By The Canadian Press on October 24, 2023.

Defence Minister Bill Blair speaks with reporters as he makes his way to cabinet, Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2023 in Ottawa. Blair says Hamas is a terrorist organization that is a threat to the whole world and must be eliminated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

OTTAWA – Defence Minister Bill Blair says Hamas is a terrorist organization that is a threat to the whole world and must be “eliminated.”

Blair also says he has no expectation that Hamas would respect international law, including any agreement on a ceasefire.

His comments are the furthest any Canadian minister has gone in explaining why Canada does not support calls for a ceasefire.

The defence minister also appeared unwilling to back more recent calls for a “humanitarian pause,” but says there are talks underway to get more aid into the Gaza Strip.

More than one million Palestinians have been displaced in Gaza since Hamas attacked Israel on Oct. 7, and they face shortages of food, water and fuel.

European foreign ministers agreed Monday that a temporary halt to fighting was needed to get aid into Gaza and French President Emmanuel Macron is in Israel pushing for such a pause today.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 24, 2023.

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