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Late start hurt Canada in UN Security Council campaign: Trudeau

Last Updated Jun 18, 2020 at 11:44 am PST

FILE - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is seen during a news conference at Rideau Cottage in Ottawa on Monday June 15, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Summary

Justin Trudeau says his government remains committed to expanding its presence on the world stage

The loss will not deter Canada's engagement on international issues such as climate change, gender equality: PM

Trudeau says he hoped hoped Canada could catch up with Norway and Ireland

OTTAWA — After Norway and Ireland both beat Canada out for a coveted seat on the UN Security Council, Justin Trudeau said Thursday his government remains committed to expanding its presence on the world stage.

The loss came in the first round of voting in a secret ballot of 193 member states of the United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday. Canada failed to receive the two-thirds majority needed to secure one of two available seats for a two-year term starting next year.

“I want to start by congratulating all of the new, non-permanent members of the UN Security Council,” Trudeau said during his daily briefing.

He attributed Canada’s late start to campaigning for the seat for the loss.

Norway and Ireland had been campaigning for the seat long before Trudeau and the Liberal party took power in Canada in 2015.

He said he hoped Canada could catch up, but that the loss will not deter Canada’s engagement on the international stage on issues such as climate change and gender equality.

“We forged new partnerships, we strengthened existing friendships, and we laid a solid foundation for an even greater collaboration in the future. And that’s never been more crucial. Now, more than ever, global cooperation is crucial, not only to defeat the virus, but the address the great challenges of our time, challenges that transcend borders — growing our economy, mitigating the impacts of climate change, building a lasting peace, advancing gender equality, protecting our citizens. We have to engage with partners to achieve these goals,” Trudeau said.

“Getting the seat was never and end in itself, but rather a means to an end, a means to ensure our voice was heard and our values upheld on the world stage. The bid was certainly one way to achieve this, but it’s far from the only way. Moving forward, Canadians can count on us to keep working with our partners to make progress internationally on issues that matter to them.”

Norway and Ireland declared their candidacies for the two temporary seats on the council years before the Liberals were elected in 2015, after which Trudeau announced Canada’s intention to run.

The defeat of the Canadian effort led by Trudeau followed a failed bid by the former Conservative government under Stephen Harper in 2010.