'Blatant interference': Saudi Arabia freezing new trade, expelling Canadian ambassador

<p> Saudi Arabia says it is expelling Canada's ambassador and suspending new trade over Canada's insistence the Kingdom release jailed human rights activists.</p> <p> Saudi Arabia’s foreign ministry announced the sudden move in a <a href="https://twitter.com/KSAmofaEN/status/1026241364604932096">series of tweets</a> on Sunday night. In those tweets, the ministry accused Canada of “overt and blatant interference” in the country’s internal affairs.</p> <p> “The Canadian position is a grave and unacceptable violation of the Kingdom's laws and procedures. In addition to violate the Kingdom's judiciary and a breach of the principle of sovereignty,” the Saudi foreign ministry tweeted.</p> <p> “The KSA considers the Canadian position an attack on the KSA and requires a firm stance to deter who attempts to undermine the sovereignty of the KSA.”</p> <p> The ministry says it is freezing all new trade and investments between the two countries.</p> <p> Saudi Arabia has also recalled its ambassador to Ottawa and has given Canadian diplomat Denis Horak 24 hours to leave the country.</p> <p> “We consider the Canadian ambassador to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia persona non grata and order him to leave within the next 24 hours,” the Saudi ministry tweeted.</p> <p> In a tweet on Friday, Global Affairs Canada stated it was “gravely concerned about additional arrests of civil society and women’s rights activists.”</p> <p> The tweet also called on the Saudi government “to immediately release them and all other peaceful human rights activists.”</p> <p dir="ltr"> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Statement?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Statement</a> | Any other attempt to interfere with our internal affairs from <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Canada?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Canada</a>, means that we are allowed to interfere in <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Canada?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Canada</a>'s internal affairs.</p> — Foreign Ministry ���� (@KSAmofaEN) <a href="https://twitter.com/KSAmofaEN/status/1026241374516113409?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">August 5, 2018</a> <p dir="ltr"> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Statement?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Statement</a> | The KSA announces the summoning of the ambassador of the Kingdom of <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SaudiArabia?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SaudiArabia</a> to <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Canada?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Canada</a>.</p> — Foreign Ministry ���� (@KSAmofaEN) <a href="https://twitter.com/KSAmofaEN/status/1026241376227401728?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">August 5, 2018</a> <p dir="ltr"> Canada is gravely concerned about additional arrests of civil society and women’s rights activists in <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SaudiArabia?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SaudiArabia</a>, including Samar Badawi. We urge the Saudi authorities to immediately release them and all other peaceful <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/humanrights?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#humanrights</a> activists.</p> — Foreign Policy CAN (@CanadaFP) <a href="https://twitter.com/CanadaFP/status/1025383326960549889?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">August 3, 2018</a>