Brandon Sun (Newspaper) - June 25, 2002, Brandon, Manitoba
Canada/World BRANDON SUN. Tuesday, June 25, 2002 A5
Arafat welcomes Bush peace plan
President Bush announces a blueprint for a Palestinian state in the Rose Garden at the White House yesterday, as Secretary of State Colin Powell watches.
Laid back Calgary indifferent to fears of G-8 street anarchy
G-8 AT A GLANCE
HOST: Prime Minister Jean Chretien G-8 LEADERS COMING: George W. Bush (United States), Tony Blair (United Kingdom), Jacques Chirac (France), Silvio Berlusconi (Italy), Gerhard Schroeder (Germany), Junichiro Koizumi (Japan), Vladimir Putin (Russia).
MAIN ISSUES: Response from G-8 leaders on proposed economic aid and action plan for Africa; global economic issues; the fight against terrorism.
DURATION: 30 hours over two days.
LOCATION: Kananaskis Village, IOO kilometres west of Calgary on eastern slopes of Rocky Mountains. Village part of Kananaskis Country, a 4,000-square-kilometre recreation area.
OTHERS INVITED: Jose Maria Aznar (president of Spain and president of Council of the European Union) Romano Prodi (president of European Commission) and Kofi Annan (secretary-general of the United Nations).
AFRICAN LEADERS INVITED: Hosni Mubarak (Egypt), Abdelaziz Boutefiika (Algeria), Olusegun Obasanjo (Nigeria), Thabo Mbeki (South Africa), Abdoulaye Wade (Senegal).
DELEGATES COMING FROM ALL COUNTRIES: 400 SECURITY: More than 5,000 soldiers and police patrolling Kananaskis and Calgary. Kananaskis protected by CF-18 fighters, armoured personnel carriers, helicopters and rocket launchers. Calgary has set up concrete barriers around key buildings and has water cannon, armoured rescue vehicles, pepper spray and tear gas for lawbreaking protesters.
PROTESTS Protest marches planned for Calgary and on Parliament Hill in Ottawa during summit.
By Susan Sevareid
JERUSALEM — Yasser Arafat welcomed U.S. President George W. Bush’s Mideast policy speech yesterday as a “serious effort to push the peace process forward,” but the Palestinian leader ignored Bush’s calls for new Palestinian leadership.
Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon echoed Bush.
A statement from Sharon’s office said that “when the Palestinian Authority undergoes genuine reforms and a new leadership takes it place at its head ... it will be possible to discuss ways of moving forward by diplomatic means.”
Palestinian officials insisted that was a decision only the Palestinian people can make.
Saeb Erekat, an aide to Arafat, said the president’s call to replace the Palestinian leader — whom Bush did not identify by name in his speech — was not acceptable.
“President Arafat was elected by the Palestinian people in a direct election ... and President Bush must respect the choice of the Palestinian people,” he said.
Throughout the Mideast, Arabs heard in Bush’s speech an unacceptable call to topple Arafat and accused the U.S. president of retreating from his promise of even a provisional Palestinian state.
The speech was broadcast live on an Arab satellite station to a region that had for weeks been awaiting Bush’s vision on how to jolt Palestinians and Israelis out of their violent impasse. Without strong U.S. intervention, many believe, neither side will ever agree to compromise.
“The Arab world will not sleep tonight,” said Mohamed el-Sayed Said, Washington bureau chief for the Egyptian daily Al-Ahram, after watching Bush’s 20-minute address.
“He practi illy demanded the removal of Arafat, the symbol of Palestinian unity,” he said. “The Palestinians have elected Arafat and they will elect him again. If the Palestinians re-elect Arafat, are they going to be punished?”
In his address, Bush said peace requires a new Palestinian leadership — one “not compromised by terror.” He said “reform must be
more than cosmetic changes or a veiled attempt to preserve the status quo” if the Palestinians are to fulfil their aspirations for a state alongside Israel.
“When the Palestinian people have new leaders, new institutions and new security arrangements with their neighbours, the United States of America will support the creation of a Palestinian state, whose borders and certain aspects of its sovereignty will be provisional until resolved as part of a final settlement in the Middle East,” Bush said.
In a statement, Arafat said the Palestinian leadership welcomes Bush’s ideas “and finds them to be a serious effort to push the peace process forward.”
“The Palestinian leadership and President Arafat hope that the details will be discussed during the direct and bilateral meetings with the American administration” and international mediators, the statement said.
Israeli Communications Minister Reuven Rivlin said Israel was pleased with the speech but rejected the concept of a provisional Palestinian state. He said Bush expressed a “vision of bringing the Palestinian people to democracy and reform, and then to negotiate.”
Rivlin, a close ally of Sharon, said that according to the Bush formula, the first steps are up to the Palestinians to reform their administration and “get rid of all those terrorists who live there.” Though the Palestinians insisted the choice of leadership is their own to make and not up to the United States, Palestinian officials took heart in Bush’s saying that ending Israeli occupation is the only way to achieve peace.
“It is the first time that an American administration recognized that the only solution for this conflict is to end the occupation and to have a state to live in peace beside Israel.”
By Robert Russo
CALGARY — After wearing out shoe leather searching for several city blocks, the international camera crews had finally found a G-8 scene worthy of shooting; the sole boarded-up business on a stretch of funky downtown Stephen Avenue.
So rare was the sign of any state of siege here that the plywood sheets over Tropicana’s windows created a small queue of cameramen yesterday.
George W. Bush, Jean Chretien and the other leaders of the world’s richest countries are more likely to see a grizzly bear than a black-garbed anarchist protester when they arrive today for their annual G-8 summit.
They’ll be cossetted among the craggy mountains and rolling foothills in a remote lodge in the resort village of Kananaskis, IOO kilometres west of here.
That leaves Calgary to the protesters. Most Calgarians, who might not be the most charitably disposed Canadians to left-wing demonstrators, appeared indifferent.
“Everyone here is pretty laid back,” said Toni Coupe, who was showing the city from the top of the Calgary Tower to a friend from Britain.
“People here aren’t likely to get excited or nervous about some protesters.”
Peter Daye, general manager of the tower, said a few extra precautions have been taken. They seem relatively tame for a town hosting an international confab.
Purses are searched. Entrance and exit points have been reduced. Operators have been assigned to elevators taking tourists to the observation level. The only visible police presence is in the form of a gaggle of off-duty Mounties craning their necks upwards from outside the tower. Only their RCMP-issue haircuts and the fact that they all seem to be wearing identical navy polo shirts and jeans gives them away as law enforcement.
Canada’s largest banks have hired one or two security guards
for the week to stand outside their gleaming Calgary office towers, but they don’t seem fearsome or numerous enough to deter a determined anarchist.
Most of the newspaper boxes and trash bins had not been removed from street corners as of yesterday. That’s been standard operating procedure since violent clashes at the WTO meeting in Seattle over two years ago triggered the anti-globalization demonstrations that have dogged international meetings since then.
No more than a few of the restaurants, bars and shops along Stephen Avenue have bothered to board up their windows.
Tropicana would seem a strange exception. A sign in the door advertises that “Body Jewellery and Hair Dye” along with “Studded Bracelets and Chokers” are for sale inside. So are hash pipes and Miami Blunts rolling paper.
It doesn’t strike one as an edi
fice of crass capitalism and, therefore, not a prime target for looters. But Tropicana’s owner, Jim Jinah, said today’s protester may be anti-NAFTA and violently opposed to the World Bank’s schedule of loan repayment foisted on impoverished African countries, but they are not always senseless sackers of commerce.
“We stock what they want,” Jinah said.
He sprang for the $40 needed for two sheets of plywood.
“It didn’t cost me much and I can sleep at night.”
The placid, relatively protester-free facade Calgary presents was constructed by careful design. City authorities denied activists permission to set up a protest camp downtown, so the movement has decided to disrupt Ottawa instead.
Only the most determined protesters are expected to try to penetrate the leaders’ mountain fortress.
Important Changes to ImmigrationCanada’s New
What You Should Know
Immigration Matters: Immigrants bring skills and commitment that help build Canada’s economy and quality of life.
^ A New Act: On June 28, 2002 the new Immigration and Refugee Protection Act becomes law. It continues Canada’s tradition of welcoming people.
+ Improving the Security of all Canadians: The new Act will protect us from those who take advantage of Canada’s openness.
In addition to the improved screening of new applicants, one of the key changes is a more secure, durable and convenient proof of residency card. This tamper-resistant plastic card replaces the previous paper document (IMM 1000). It is only for Permanent Residents (landed immigrants) living in Canada.
^ Who will need the new Permanent Resident Card:
“Permanent Residents” are people who have applied arid been accepted to live in Canada. Starting December 31, 2003, Permanent Residents travelling outside of the country will need a Permanent Resident Card to re-enter Canada. Canadian citizens will not need this card.
+ Becoming Canadians: Many Permanent Residents are qualified to become Canadian citizens. These people are encouraged to apply for their citizenship, lf they succeed they will not need to apply for the new card.
+ For More Information: Visit the Canada web site at http://www.canada.gc.ca or call 1 800 O-Canada.
0 1 800 O-Canada (1 800 622-6232) TTY/TDD: 1 888 576-8502
O Service Canada Access CentresImmigration and Refugee Protection Act