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DIPLOMATIC CIRCLES

New Serbian envoy hopes for ‘more intensive’ political dialogue with Ottawa

Feature|By Neil Moss
A potential Serbian accession to the EU could be attractive to Canada, as the new ambassador says it would be 'very much' interested in accessing the Canada-EU free trade pact.
‘We have to start, we have to stimulate, we have to get our acts together in order to achieve our goals,’ says Goverdina Christina Coppoolse.
Kallayana Vipattipumiprates arrived in Ottawa in February, straight from his previous posting in Iran, but only presented credentials in October.
Inspections, national housing standards, and continuing a binational contact group are among key commitments Mexico would like from Canada, says its consular head in Ottawa.

Hungarian envoy sees a ‘new momentum’ for bilateral relationship

Mária Éva Vass-Salazar says her priorities in Ottawa include tightening political connections, trade, innovation, and co-operation through NATO.

Norwegian envoy returns to bilateral work after ‘360 degree’ view

Canada and Norway share common goals and can ‘back each other up’ on the global stage, says Jon Elvedal Fredriksen.

Diplomacy disrupted: envoys adapt their work amid the COVID crisis

‘I think the way we are doing it is quite difficult but we have no choice,’ says French Ambassador Kareen Rispal, who thinks the pandemic has also created a ‘revival’ in the importance of missions.

Canada-Irish relationship ‘ripe for development,’ new envoy says

Eamonn McKee, Ireland’s ambassador-designate to Canada, was one of the negotiators who helped bring about the Good Friday Agreement to end conflict in Northern Ireland.

Vietnamese envoy arrives on repatriation flight, one of many firsts for new cohort of ‘Zoom diplomats’

‘We are Zoom diplomats now,’ says Pham Cao Phong, who, with the South Korean envoy, was the first ambassador in Canada to present their credentials to the Governor General virtually.

South Korean scholar-turned-diplomat sees posting as front-row seat to ‘virtual diplomacy era’

Chang Keung Ryong, a former political science and foreign policy professor, says he’d like to write a book about the gap between theory and practice in diplomacy.
Diplomatic Circles

Venezuela winter elections will be fraudulent, warns envoy, calling for continued support

Last November, Canada officially recognized Orlando Viera-Blanco, a representative of interim president Juan Guaidó, as the country’s ambassador.

Recognize Palestine as a state, upgrade diplomatic status, says new representative 

Like her predecessor, Hala Abou-Hassira says she’d like to see the Canadian government upgrade her office’s diplomatic status.

New order granting diplomatic privileges to African Union officials a ‘positive step,’ say former diplomats

The timing of the new status order—coming days before countries, including the 55 AU member nations, voted on Canada’s bid for the UN Security Council seat—is notable, say former diplomats.

No ‘magic’ response: diplomats discuss international lessons learned from COVID-19

'We’re living a gigantic world-wide experiment of geology, economy, and psychology, and we will only know later what happened,' says German Ambassador Sabine Sparwasser.

Armenian Embassy moves commemorations online to mark 105 years since genocide 

Every year on April 24, the embassy participates in a march to remember the more than 1.5 million people who died during the First World War.

Embassies in Ottawa offer ‘around the clock’ support in the new work-from-home reality

Envoys comment on the ‘uncharted territory’ brought forward by the ‘dreadful ordeal’ COVID-19 brings, and urge co-operation in the global response.

‘Busy and worried’: Italian envoy says country is at ‘forefront’ of COVID-19 battle, urges solidarity in global response

The most important thing is that people understand ‘they are the solution,’ and the only way to stop the spread is to keep separate from a virus that ‘walks with our legs,’ Claudio Taffuri says.

Envoys select top 12 ambassadors of the year at third annual bash

They were recognized for their work promoting public diplomacy and helping ‘bring the world to Canada,’ as the dean of the diplomatic corps put it.
Feature|Neil Moss

Cuban-Canadian relationship has remained strong regardless of governing party, says senior Cuban official

'I believe that our relationship for all these years has been guided by state policy,' says Marcelino Medina González.

Opening economic immigration track to refugees a ‘win-win,’ says UNHCR rep

Canada should 'take on more of a leadership role' and scale up its support to help resolve the crisis in Venezuela, says Rema Jamous Imseis.

Canada can look to Japan as ‘bridge-builder’ in the Asia Pacific, envoy says

Canada and Japan ‘need each other very much,’ says Yasuhisa Kawamura.

Taiwan president’s re-election could signal diplomatic shift in China: analysts

A China expert says he’s concerned Taiwan's January election could prompt a shift in approach from China, with some pointing to tensions in Hong Kong as an example.

Afghan envoy fills two-year Ottawa vacancy with focus on trade, investment

Canada is the first head of mission posting for new Afghanistan Ambassador Mohammad Hassan Soroosh Yousufzai, whose predecessor left amidst controversy.

Kuwait ambassador brings team approach to diplomacy

An advocate for women, Reem Al Khaled says she’s always wanted to be ‘one of the voices’ pushing to get women involved.

From ‘failed state’ to stability: Rwanda has made ‘impressive’ strides, says envoy

High Commissioner Prosper Higiro speaks of his at times risky path to politics and how far the country has come 25 years after the genocide.

Ecuador’s future is in mining, and Canada can play a big role, envoy says

Ambassador Diego Stacey says there’s 'political will' in oil-exporting Ecuador to improve its trade relationship with Canada.

Christchurch response, trade deal closure lasting memories for outgoing New Zealand envoy

After almost four years, New Zealand High Commissioner Daniel Mellsop left Canada on Dec. 5 for a job at his country's foreign service head office.

French envoy defends Macron’s NATO comments as ‘brave’

French ambassador Kareen Rispal says the 29-member alliance is in the midst of a political crisis and her president was recognizing that fact.

Diplomatic association plans black-tie bash on tight timeline

The ODA's new executive is moving quickly to plan its 10th anniversary gala on Valentine's Day 2020, the only annual black-tie diplomatic event in the capital. 

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