Harper: “Opening the floodgates of refugees from a terrorist war zone is too great of a risk for Canada”
With just a little over a month to go before the upcoming federal elections, Prime Minister Harper was interviewed by CBC News chief correspondent Peter Mansbridge on September 7, 2015.
The interview touched on a range of topics of importance to Canadians, including the economy and the Mike Duffy trial. However, in light of the recent developments in Europe, as hundreds of thousands of refugees from the war-torn Middle East are overwhelming Greece, Hungary, Germany and Austria, Mansbridge asked the Prime Minister about the Conservative Government’s position on the refugee crisis.
When asked whether the fight against ISIS is winnable, Harper explained that Canada is training a good fighting force in Northern Iraq. The Kurds and other forces Canada is allied with have been doing a very good job, but to really defeat ISIS and roll it back, there’s going to have to be a more effective ground force. “Canada has got to continue to do what we can to train people on the ground there in that country, in the region. And in the case of Syria particularly, there’s obviously got to be a political solution that goes beyond the fighting”, he said.
Harper told Mansbridge that withdrawing from the international coalition will provide ISIS with an opportunity to spread and stage international terrorist attacks against the world, including Canada.
Harper took a shot at the Liberals, who promised to end the ISIS mission if they are elected in October, and at the NDP, who are against Canada participating in the US-led coalition, by saying: “you know, it’s easy for the Liberals or NDP to say we’re going to pull out Canadian forces. But I don’t think our allies are going to say we could all pull out. That would be an absolute catastrophe, not just for the region. You know, not just adding tens of millions more refugees and displaced persons like as we’ve been talking about the last few days, but it will present very quickly a radical escalation and a security threat to our own countries. We cannot tolerate that.”
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