October 23, 2016

Council of Canadians political director Brent Patterson on CTV National News last night supporting Wallonian opposition to CETA and highlighting the deal would have negative consequences for people and the environment.

Despite an intervention by European Parliament president Martin Schulz yesterday, Walloon minister-president Paul Magnette is holding firm on his refusal to agree to the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) signing ceremony this coming Thursday (October 27).

Magnette says, "I think it's worth taking a little more time."

As such, the deadline to resolve this impasse has been shifted from this past Friday, to this weekend, while one news report says that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has now set this Monday as his deadline. Another news report suggests the deadline could be as late as Wednesday, the day before the summit.

October 22, 2016

Barlow speaking in Munich earlier today. Photo by Adrian Bebb.

Blue Planet Project founder Maude Barlow is in Bavaria, Germany to promote public water and oppose the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA).

Barlow tells us, "I am here for a three-city tour in Bavaria to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Bavarian Association of Municipal Drinking Water Services, who have fought for clean, safe, local and public water before most."

She spoke in Würzburg yesterday, is in Munich today, and will also visit Marburg.

Yesterday, she tweeted, "Leaving the lovely water warriors of Würzburg, Bavaria who have protected their water as a public trust for 30 years!"

She was in Bavaria when news broke about the collapse of CETA negotiations.

October 22, 2016

The Council of Canadians South Niagara chapter and allies protested outside a Liberal Party of Canada meeting last night.

The Liberal Party event took place at the Fallsview Casino Resort in Niagara Falls. Their promotion highlighted, "This will be the first gathering of Liberals in Ontario since our historic victory last October and is an event not to be missed." The regular registration fee was $350 with sliding scale rates down to $115 for "Youth and Indigenous".

The outreach for the rally noted, "Citizens are calling on Justin Trudeau to honour his environmental commitments laid out in his party’s election platform. With starting to end destructive projects that fuel Canada's contribution to climate change. Divesting from fossil fuels! And for him to establish a Lake Tonawanda wetlands national park, that would rescue the Thundering Waters Forest." The Thundering Waters Forest is threatened by a plan to build the $1 billion 'Paradise' development project, which includes a hotel, entertainment facilities, apartment housing, and a private school.

October 21, 2016

The Council of Canadians Montreal chapter joined a protest today outside the Ritz-Carlton hotel against the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA).

A conference was taking place inside called, "The Canada-EU agreement: a new momentum for Quebec", with speakers including former Quebec premier Jean Charest, Quebec's minister of international relations, their chief negotiator for CETA, various business leaders, and the European Union's ambassador to Canada.

The protest was also an occasion to celebrate the collapse of CETA talks in Brussels.

October 21, 2016

The Belgian region of Wallonia is holding firm in its opposition to the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA).

Earlier this week, European trade commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom had said that if the Council of the European Union (which is comprised of representatives from the 28 member states of the European Union) could not reach an agreement by today, then the CETA signing ceremony scheduled for October 27 would have to be cancelled.

News reports now suggest that negotiations will extend into the weekend to try to reach a deal, but given the depth of concerns that were expressed by Walloon minister-president Paul Magnette in an address to the Wallonian parliament today that prospect is highly unlikely.

Council of Canadians trade campaigner Sujata Dey is in Belgium now and has been following the debate in the Wallonian parliament in Namur.