PBI-Canada webinar on militarization of territory and CANSEC arms show, May 31

Published by Brent Patterson on

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PBI statement: “The dominant security discourse associated with the militarization of societies is a setback. Billions more spent on weapons will not make the world safer.”

The CANSEC arms fair will take place in Ottawa this coming June 1-2.

CANSEC is organized by the Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries (CADSI) to “showcase leading-edge technologies, products and services for land-based, naval, aerospace and joint forces military units.”

The exhibitors list this year includes:

– BAE Systems (the maker of the Eurofighter Typhoon warplane)

– Bell Textron Canada Limited (that has manufactured helicopters used by the Colombian and Mexican armed forces)

– General Dynamics Land Systems-Canada (that makes the Light Armoured Vehicles implicated in human rights violations in Yemen)

– L3Harris Technologies (now bidding to sell armed drones to Canada)

– Lockheed Martin Canada (the world’s largest military contractor now in final negotiations with Canada to sell 88 of their F-35 stealth warplanes)

– Raytheon Canada Limited (the world’s largest producer of guided missiles that recently sold missiles to arm Canada’s current fleet of CF-18 fighter jets).

The Canadian Commercial Corporation is also listed as an exhibitor at this year’s CANSEC. This Crown Corporation facilitates exports, including weapons sales.

Ottawa Citizen reporter David Pugliese has reported: “The Ottawa-based CCC [Canadian Commercial Corporation], which helps Canadian exporters get contracts with foreign governments acknowledges  it conducts no follow-up to ensure exported Canadian-built equipment isn’t being used to abuse human rights.”

It is expected that 55 international delegations will be present in Ottawa for the CANSEC arms show this year.

The Canadian Commercial Corporation has previously highlighted that it has toured the exhibition floor at the CANSEC arms show in Ottawa with a delegation including representatives from Colombia and Mexico.

It is expected that Canadian Defence Minister Anita Anand will be at the Official Opening Breakfast for CANSEC on Wednesday June 1 starting at 7 am.

PBI webinar, May 31

On Tuesday May 31, Peace Brigades International-Canada will be hosting an online forum on the arms industry and the militarization of territory.

Speakers will include Quetzalli Villanueva Vergara, a lawyer with the Human Rights Centre of the ‘Tlachinollan’ Mountain (accompanied by PBI-Mexico), Dene land defender Little Wolf (whose land is occupied by Canadian Forces Base Cold Lake), and Tkaronto-based World Beyond War organizer Rachel Small. A speaker from Colombia will be confirmed soon. It will be moderated by PBI-Canada Board member Seb Bonet.

Speakers: Quetzalli Villanueva Vergara, Rachel Small, Little Wolf, Seb Bonet.

Early registration for that webinar is now available here.

More information on this webinar and the mobilization in Ottawa by the Canada-Wide Peace and Justice Network coming soon.

In June 2017, the Canadian armoured vehicle manufacturer INKAS exhibited at CANSEC. In July 2021, the Colombian National Police used an INKAS Huron armoured carrier to stop delegations travelling to Cali for a National Strike popular assembly.

Mexican environmental defender Gustavo Castro, who was wounded alongside Lenca defender Berta Cáceres in Honduras in 2016, says: “One of the greatest threats of militarization is the repression of social movements and protest.”

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