Canada Takes Note of the Central African Republic

There will be a “take note” debate on the subject of the situation in the Central African Republic, and Canada’s potential response to it, in the House of Commons this Wednesday 14 February. If you think Canada should get more involved in the international response to this crisis in particular, or indeed in global responses to challenges to human security in general, now is the perfect time to contact your MP and let them know.

For background on the situation in the CAR from various UN affiliated agencies, click here. For my opinion on the subject (spoiler alert: I think we should be more involved!), click here. For background on just what a take note debate is, click here. (Long story short, it’s a relatively open debate designed to allow consultation with the House before the government forms policy on a given issue.)

And above all, if you think this is an important issue, please share this message widely.

photo credit: EU Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection via photopin cc

Op-ed: Never again? Rwanda & the CAR

From my comment on the situation in the Central African Republic, and the relative lack of response from the Canadian government:

Mark Twain supposedly remarked that history doesn’t repeat itself, but it does rhyme.

The world today is getting ready for another one of its biennial Olympic parties. Even before the games begin, we have been drawn in by the spectacle. Other events vie for our attention as well — from the misadventures of Rob Ford to Justin Bieber.

Meanwhile, the United Nations is sounding the alarm over the desperate situation in the Central Africa Republic (C.A.R.). John Ging, a senior U.N. official, recently argued that, “the elements are there, the seeds are there, for a genocide.” The normally circumspect U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon stated bluntly that, “the C.A.R. is in free fall,” facing a “crisis of epic proportions.” More than a million have reportedly fled their homes in a country of an estimated 4.5 million.

Click here to read the piece.

photo credit: UNHCR Photo Download via photopin cc