Diplomatic Briefing

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Archive for June 16, 2018

Newsline: U.S. embassy receives ‘suspicious substance’ meant for ambassador to Canada

Officials at the U.S. embassy in Ottawa say they received an envelope containing a “suspicious substance” that was addressed to the U.S. ambassador to Canada. The envelope was received at an off-site mail screening facility in Ottawa, but the mailing address was the embassy, with Kelly Knight Craft’s name on it. “The substance was tested and found not to be harmful,” the embassy told CityNews. An embassy staff member was exposed to the substance and received precautionary medical attention and is fine. A spokesperson for the embassy wouldn’t provide more details since the incident is under investigation. Canada’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Chrystia Freeland tweeted about the incident, saying it is a “wholly unacceptable threat” and that Craft “does an essential and difficult job and Canada respects her service.” CTV reports that a death threat against Craft accompanied the substance, along with a threat to U.S. President Donald Trump.



Newsline: Australia rules out moving its Israel embassy to Jerusalem

Australia will not be following Donald Trump’s lead and moving its embassy to Jerusalem, Julie Bishop has said, despite strong support from the party’s base. The Liberal Party’s youth arm had called on the government to relocate its embassy from Tel Aviv to Israel’s legislative capital, and to suspend all aid to Palestine “until it terminates its ‘Martyr’s fund”. The motion, which is non-binding, was carried in a vote 43 to 31, but the foreign minister said there was no chance the government would adopt it as policy. There are 110 council delegates who have voting rights at the national council. “While I understand the sentiment behind this resolution, the Australian government will not be moving our embassy to Jerusalem,” Bishop said. “Jerusalem is a final status issue and we have maintained that position for decades and we are doing all we can do to ensure that any support we give to the Palestinian Authority is only used for purposes that we determine.”