International Relations and Defence

Multilateral institutions through which sovereign nations talk to each other, collaborate on regional and global initiatives, and attempt to resolve disputes are under immense strain. Commitments to multilateralism are weakening, with potentially serious consequences for global stability and security.

Canada’s long-standing commitment to multilateralism builds on Lester B. Pearson’s legacy as a Nobel Peace Prize laureate. A Green government will support such international engagement, recognizing that isolationism and nationalistic jingoism create a dangerous path and must be vigorously resisted. We will strengthen Canada’s role in promoting peace and global cooperation.

International Development

International stability rests on all nations being able to provide their people with basic needs and security. These are articulated in the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

  • Re-establish the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) that was dismantled by the Harper government, with a mandate to provide overseas development assistance where it is most needed. Eliminate the requirement that aid be tied to Canadian business interests overseas, or strategic geopolitics.
  • Increase Canada’s overseas development assistance budget to reach former Prime Minister Pearson’s goal of 0.7 per cent of GDP, which Canada has never achieved but which many in the donor group of our allies have already surpassed.
  • Ramp up our national contribution to the Green Climate Fund and Global Environmental Facility to $4 billion per year by 2030.
  • Review federal government policy to align with the 17 Sustainable Development Goals and develop a mechanism to track progress in meeting these targets both at home and abroad.

Foreign Affairs and Security

The security and defence of the nation is a fundamental responsibility of any sovereign government. Not since the end of the Cold War 30 years ago has global security seemed so precarious. Contributing to this is the disruption being caused by climate change – referred to by military analysts as a threat multiplier. This will only worsen as the Earth heats up, including in Canada.

The Green Party is committed to building and keeping peace, including post-conflict work to strengthen civil society and democratic institutions around the world. We are committed to expanding Canada’s peace-keeping role internationally. At the same time, we are fully aware of the dangers of militarism and the need to defend against it, both at home and on the global stage. We support the United Nations’ doctrine of the duty to protect and refuse to place corporate interests ahead of ethical action to protect vulnerable populations.

The Green Party understands that Canadian Armed Forces personnel are appreciated worldwide for their degree of training, quality leadership at all levels and for the can-do and cooperative attitude they bring to international operations. Canada now needs a general purpose, combat capable force that can provide realistic options to the government in domestic security emergencies, continental defence and international operations. This includes protecting Canada’s northern borders as Arctic ice melts. A Green government will ensure that the Canadian Armed Forces are prepared to serve in both traditional and new capacities.

  • Ensure a consistent capital investment plan with stable funding so that service personnel have the equipment and training they need to fulfill an expanded mandate. This includes naval and coast guard vessels that can operate in the Arctic Ocean, fixed-wing search and rescue aircraft, and helicopters.
  • Normalize the deployment of military personnel to protect civilians and communities from extreme forest fires, flooding and storms caused by climate change, and new pollution threats in Canada’s north.
  • Sign and ratify the Treaty to Abolish Nuclear Weapons.
  • Ban autonomous weapons and work for a global pact to make them illegal.
  • Cancel the contracts to provide Saudi Arabia with armoured vehicles and ban importation of Saudi oil.

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