Canada And Saudi Arabia Normalize Diplomatic Relations After 2018 Split
By Steve Scherer
05/24/23 AT 3:33 PM EDT
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Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a press conference in response to the release of a special report on foreign interference, on Parliament Hill in Ottawa
Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a press conference in response to the release of a special report on foreign interference, on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada May 23, 2023. REUTERS
Canada and Saudi Arabia have agreed to restore full diplomatic ties and appoint new ambassadors, both countries said on Wednesday, bringing to a close a 2018 dispute that damaged relations and trade.
The decision follows discussions held between Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on the sidelines of the summit of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Forum in Bangkok in November last year, according to statements from Canada and Saudi Arabia.
The decision stems from “the desire for both sides to restore diplomatic relations between the two countries on the basis of mutual respect and common interests,” the statements said.
The 2018 row pre-dated the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi later that year, which Canada and all Western countries condemned. It started when Canada’s embassy in Riyadh published a tweet in Arabic urging the immediate release of women’s rights activists held by Saudi Arabia.