On September 8th, the Canadian Centre for International Cooperation's Americas Policy Group hosted a panel discussion at the University of Ottawa to explore concerns raised by the Harper government's proposed Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement. The meeting highlighted the importance of conducting a Human Rights Impact Assessment before ratifying the agreement, as was recommended by the House of Commons' international trade committee. In addition, it examined the influence of transnational corporations on the rights of Colombians, and the potential harm to be caused by the Canadian government in endorsing such corporations in a country with significant existing human and labour rights abuses.
Dora Lucy Arias, Colombian human rights lawyer from the Jose Alvear Restrepo Lawyers' Collective
Gauri Sreenivasan, trade analyst with the Canadian Centre for International Cooperation
The panel was moderated by Fiona Meyer-Cook of the CCIC Americas Policy Group. Philippe Tremblay of Lawyers Without Borders provided interpretation. The recording includes questions asked following Dora Lucy Arias's presentation, along with the longer question and answer period which closed the event.
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