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MPs meet Neri Colmenares, ICHRP delegation in Ottawa

MPs meet Neri Colmenares, ICHRP delegation in Ottawa
Neri Colmenares with ICHRP Canada chair Patricia Lisson (back row, behind Colmenares), Bloc Tremblay (in a black and blue suit), Duceppe (sixth from the left in the back row), and Bern Jagunos (in pink coat).

Simon Pierre Savard Tremblay and Alexis Brunelle Duceppe, both members of the Bloc Quebecois, met Bayan Muna leader and veteran human rights lawyer Neri Colmenares at an October 4 meeting in Ottawa.

Colmenares and the International Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines (ICHRP-Canada) delegation discussed the significant impact of Canada’s Indo-Pacific Strategy on the human rights situation in the Philippines.

Tremblay stated in recent Facebook posts that he and Alexis Brunelle Duceppe had the pleasure of meeting representatives of human rights organizations working in the Philippines, including the International Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines (ICHRP-Canada).

Patricia Lisson (left) , the chair of ICHRP-Canada, posed for a photograph with Neri Colmenares,  
human rights lawyer and chair of Bayan Muna Partylist. (Photo credit: ICHRP Canada)

Concerns about Canada’s Indo-Pacific Strategy, and specifically Canada’s pending defence cooperation memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Philippine government, were a major topic of discussion at the meeting. Under the current regime of Marcos Jr., the Philippines have the worst track record of human rights abuses.

Liberal MP Sameer Zuberi (in black suit) met Neri Colmenares at his office in Ottawa. (Photo credit: ICHRP Canada)

In a Facebook post, Tremblay stated, “Of course, they can count on my support and that of my colleagues.Trade and its economic benefits should never prioritize the welfare and respect for the rights of the populations concerned.”

Bloc Québécois MP Tremblay, a member of Subcommittee and Procedure of the Standing Committee on International Trade, was elected to the Canadian House of Commons in 2019 and represents the Saint Hyacinthe-Bagot electoral district. Duceppe is the current Vice-chairman of the International Human Rights Subcommittee of the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development.

Neri Colmenares is on a speaking tour in Canada about human rights and diaspora issues in various Canadian cities organized by Malaya Canada and ICHRP-Canada. The speaking tour began at a packed community forum in Toronto last October 1. The remaining cities on the itinerary are Montreal, Edmonton, Calgary, and Vancouver.