Isn't this interesting.
It seems that Monte Solberg (Now Minister of Citizenship and Immigration) had this to say about the conduct of a Liberal Cabinet minister when confronted with association with supposed terrorist organizations
Let's take a lookee-see at Hansard, shall we...
Mr. Monte Solberg (Medicine Hat, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, Canadian Tamils are law-abiding good people but in any group there are a few bad apples. Right now the Department of Citizenship and Immigration lawyers are arguing at the supreme court to have a man deported because of his association with FACT, a group they say is a fundraising front for the Tamil Tigers. Last year the finance minister and the CIDA ministers argued there was nothing wrong with attending a FACT fundraiser.
The Speaker: Before the minister answers, the question had to do with whether ministers were raising money for other purposes. It has nothing to do with the responsibilities of the government and I am inclined to rule the question out of order.
Hon. Maria Minna (Minister for International Cooperation, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, during question period the member for Medicine Hat referred to both myself and the Minister of Finance and said that we had attended a terrorist dinner or function and that we support terrorists. We attended a community event. When he says things like that, he is painting members of the Tamil community as a whole as terrorists. I attended a community event that was made up of respectable Canadian citizens. I did not attend or have dinner with a group of terrorists. I take this as an offence and I ask for an apology. I do not support terrorism and neither does my colleague. That is absolutely unacceptable.
The Speaker: From time to time some hon. members of the House say things that may cause some offence to some other hon. members. I think the member has made a point here that has clarified the situation, insofar as she is concerned, under the guise of a question of privilege.
We have a disagreement here on an interpretation of what the nature of this meeting was.
Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it is difficult to understand how there can be a valid difference of opinion as to the nature of the meeting given the fact that the minister and I were there and the hon. member was not.
That is not the issue. The other part of the issue is that it is alleged that we support terrorism and fundraising activities for terrorism. That is clearly not the fact. It not only besmirches us, it besmirches the entire Tamil community, but it is our own privileges that we are raising this.
Mr. Monte Solberg (Medicine Hat, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I simply have to bring some clarity to this situation. During question period I certainly did not suggest in any way that the Minister of Finance and the minister for CIDA knowingly supported this group.
What I am alleging is simply that the department of immigration, CSIS and other government organizations have pointed to the fact that FACT is a front for a terrorist organization. I argue that both ministers should have known that as they are cabinet members and that they should renounce that group that they in fact unknowingly supported.
So according to Monte Solberg just associating with an organization that is related to terrorist organizations is enough. As Solberg himself says, you don't have to knowingly support the group, just show up at their events. That's enough to get you in trouble if your own department claims the group is involved with terrorists.
Liberals attend event put on by group that the Canadian Government says is affiliated with terrorists - Monte Solberg condemns them.
Conservatives attend event put on by group that the Canadian Government says is affiliated with terrorists - Monte Solberg says what?