Saudi says no room for mediation in Canada row

There were 327 Saudi students at Mc Gill University last year.					Marie France Coallier  Montreal Gazette

There were 327 Saudi students at Mc Gill University last year. Marie France Coallier Montreal Gazette

According to the FT's Simeon Kerr, Saudi Arabia ordered the divestments "no matter the cost" after Canada criticized its arrest of Samar Badawi, a women's rights activist.

Arab countries, including Bahrain, Palestine and the UAE, have lined up in support of Saudi Arabia after it took trade and diplomatic measures against Canada on Monday in response to the latter's interference in the internal affairs of the Kingdom.

Saudi Arabia's main state wheat buying agency told grains exporters it will no longer accept Canadian-origin grains in global tenders, European traders said.

Canada imported 71,300 barrels of crude a day from Saudi Arabia as of 2014, accounting for about 11 percent of the country's imports, according to Natural Resources Canada.

Yes. In 2015, Riyadh recalled its ambassador to Sweden and stopped issuing work visas for Swedes after the European Union member country's foreign minister described a court decision related to Raif Badawi as "medieval" and the kingdom's ruling Al Saud family as presiding over a "dictatorship".

He said the process is continuing to transfer Saudi students from Canada to other countries.

"We've been pretty clear in our dealings around the world and specifically in Saudi Arabia that we know that it's important that we bring Canadian values around the world". Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs Chrystia Freeland, whose tweet sparked the hostility, said that "Canada will continue to advocate for human rights and for the courageous women and men who push for these fundamental rights around the world" after Saudi's response.

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And, a tweet from Saudi Arabia's state airline said all flights from and to Toronto would be suspended starting from August 13th.

Analysts and regional officials say that Riyadh's actions have little to do with Canada; instead, the kingdom's actions are a broader signal to western governments that any criticism of its domestic policies is unacceptable.

A source at a Saudi bank told Reuters the bank was contacted by the central bank on Wednesday afternoon asking for information about all their Canadian exposure - investments in Canada and foreign exchange positions.

"From about 10:30 this morning a big sell program came in internationally at one of the dealers, " said Dominique Barker, Portfolio Manager, CIBC Asset Management.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia put a man to death on a cross in the holy city of Mecca on Wednesday, while waging a public relations battle to call out alleged human rights violations in Canada.

Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is expected to hold a news conference in Montreal, where he will be pressed on the diplomatic crisis. Saudi Arabia has invested about $6 billion in Canadian businesses since 2006, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

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