Canada FM says Canada must do more as United States leadership wanes

Minister of Foreign Affairs Chrystia Freeland delivers a speech in the House of Commons on Canada's Foreign Policy in Ottawa on Tuesday

Minister of Foreign Affairs Chrystia Freeland delivers a speech in the House of Commons on Canada's Foreign Policy in Ottawa on Tuesday

And she added that, unlike the United States under Trump, Canada would not reject worldwide alliances, and would continue to "work with other like-minded people and countries who share our aims".

The world is changing fast and Canada needs to set its own course as the USA pulls back from global leadership, the country's foreign minister warned in a speech Tuesday.

"It would be naive or hypocritical to claim before this House that all Americans today agree", she is reported to have said.

"Many of the voters in last year's presidential election cast their ballots, animated in part by a desire to shrug off the burden of world leadership", Freeland said. "To say this is not controversial: it is a fact".

"Canada is grateful, and will always be grateful, to our neighbor for the outsized role it has played in the world".

Ms. Freeland said Canada has been able to count on the powerful USA military to provide a protective shield since 1945 as she argued this country needs to significantly build up the Canadian military with "a substantial investment" to help confront strategic threats to liberal democracies.

Freeland reiterated that Canada was deeply disappointed by the decision to withdraw from the Paris pact but made no other criticisms of US policy and did not mention Trump by name.

Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland praised the United States while frequently condemning its current president in a major foreign policy speech Tuesday.

"Women's rights are human rights". That will include supporting abortion rights.

"It is a choice Americans must make for themselves", Freeland said.

"What minister Freeland was saying is that we recognise the importance of our commitment to our military", Morneau said.

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"We will put Canada at the forefront of this global effort", she said.

"The accent on hard power is interesting", said Fen Hampson, head of the global security program at the Centre for International Governance Innovation.

"Beggar-thy-neighbour policies hit middle powers soonest and hardest", she said. She also made clear those bonds might loosen.

"The atrocities of Daesh directly challenge both the sanctity of borders and the liberal worldwide order itself". The figure places it as one of the lowest military spenders in the 29 nation member group.

The address came on the day the Canadian government planned to unveil a new defense policy review, which was expected to ask for billions of dollars in additional military spending. "To put it plainly: Canadian diplomacy and development sometimes require the backing of hard power", Freeland read from her prepared speech.

This will not go down well with the prickly - and, it seems, at times paranoid - American President.

Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland told Parliament on Tuesday that relying on the "the USA security umbrella would make us a client state". "That is why doing our fair share is clearly necessary", Freeland said. "But global trade is the wrong target", she said.

She stressed that North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and Article 5, the alliance's mutual defense doctrine, lay at the heart of Canada's national security policy.

Freeland's third goal is to add new trading partners to counterbalance its biggest client, the US-as the two countries and Mexico prepare to revamp NAFTA.

She touted the benefits of trade, saying barriers to global commerce in the 1930s proved costly. She outlined three specific ways to do this.

She also reiterated Canada's disappointment in Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement and says it is more important than ever for Canada to plot its own course in the world. Her words reflected an unusual distancing between the United States and Germany, who have been allies since the post-World War II era.

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