Statement made on 27 April 2010 by Senator Roméo Dallaire
Hon. Roméo Antonius Dallaire:
Honourable senators, I found it interesting that earlier the leader was quoting many different NGOs who have been writing articles in the newspapers. I cannot remember the number of times that the Leader of the Government has told senators on this side that we should stop reading the newspapers and to not believe everything in them. She has used that as a fundamental argument.
It is indeed true that each country will participate in this group to meet the requirements. However, it reminds me of Afghanistan, where Canadian troops are out fighting and conducting themselves according to the mandate NATO has given us, while other countries are sitting in their garrisons and have not gone out — they have accomplished nothing and are leaving. They are also doing their part, but we are not happy about carrying the weight when they are not.
This brings me to the era of conflict in which we find ourselves. In this era of conflict, the civilian population is a target. It is an instrument of war. You move people massively by horror and you create horror through acts like rape to deliberately instill fear. Rape has become a weapon of war. It is one of the tools of war. In Rwanda they used prisoners with HIV/AIDS to infect women and young children so that they would become infected and have children who would also be infected. It was a means of contributing to the destruction of those people.
In Darfur, the Arab-based militia are raping African women in order to create another race that is more amenable to them to reduce, in an indirect genocide, the African-based Darfurians. In the Congo they use child soldiers, raping girls and using them as instrument of war, another form of rape as an instrument.
Though we have decided that medical interventions are between a doctor and a woman, ultimate decision rests with the woman. However, the woman faces the traumas of not only having been raped but also trying to survive, and trying to sustain children who are sick.
Is the Leader of the Government telling the Senate that in the policy the government is pursuing we would not fund NGOs that are in conflict areas that would be called upon to conduct abortions in order to stop the pregnancies that have been created under the absolute adverse, perverse conditions I have described?
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