Statement from Minister Goodale on his visit to Israel and the West Bank

TEL AVIV, Aug. 4, 2017 /CNW/ - Today, the Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, made the following statement following the conclusion of his visit to Israel and the West Bank:

"Israel is a key ally and steadfast friend of Canada, and our two countries share a rich and multifaceted relationship based on common interests, and strong political and social ties. Canada is equally a friend of the Palestinian people, and has a strong relationship with the Palestinian Authority. This week, I travelled to Israel and the West Bank to engage with key representatives on public safety and cyber security issues.

I met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to discuss Canada-Israel cooperation, and security issues in the region.

I also had the opportunity to meet Israeli Minister of Public Security, Gilad Erdan, to discuss our two countries' cooperation on security, as well as our shared priority to ensure that public safety officers have the support and treatment they need when facing post-traumatic stress injuries. Following our meeting, I formally announced Canada's Mutual Recognition Arrangement with the Israel Tax Authority regarding our respective Trusted Trader programs, which represents our joint commitment to strengthening trade relations without compromising on security.

I visited the Peres Centre for Peace and Innovation in Tel Aviv and announced Canada's contribution of CAN$168,000 to train and empower one hundred young leaders in the region in citizen journalism and storytelling. This contribution, funded through Global Affairs Canada's Peace and Stabilization Operations Program, will foster participants' skills to promote messages of peaceful coexistence within their networks and communities.

During a tour of Israel's Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-IL) facility at the CyberSpark Israeli Cyber Innovation Arena in Be'er Sheva, I had the opportunity to understand first-hand how Israel addresses cyber security events. Canada and Israel actively collaborate through our CERTs, and share information as a part of day-to-day operational activities.

While in Ramallah, I met with Prime Minister of the Palestinian Authority, Dr. Rami Hamdallah, and discussed the current security situation in the West Bank and highlighted Canada's support to the Palestinian security sector.

Throughout the meetings and discussions during my visit, I highlighted Canada's priority on countering radicalization to violence, and stressed the need for effective measures to reduce violence and instability. Canada is committed to the goal of a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East, including the creation of a Palestinian state living side by side in peace and security with Israel.

I thank our hosts for their warm welcome and hospitality, and reaffirm Canada's commitment to promoting peace and stability in the Middle East."

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SOURCE Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada

For further information: Dan Brien, Office of the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, 613-998-5681; Media Relations, Public Safety Canada, (613) 991-0657


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