Canada to reopen Libyan embassy

AP News
Posted: Sep 13, 2011 10:40 AM
Canada to reopen Libyan embassy

Foreign Minister John Baird said Tuesday Canada will reopen its embassy in the Libyan capital.

Baird said a small team of diplomats arrived in Tripoli last weekend to conduct a security assessment and that Canada will establish a temporary embassy while the old one is renovated.

"We are starting the work of refurbishing and securing our embassy in Tripoli," Baird said, without providing an exact date for the reopening.

Baird said Canada will resume trade between the countries and has secured an exemption with the United Nations to unfreeze more than $2 billion in assets for humanitarian aid in Libya.

Canadian fighter jets played a major role in the UN-mandated NATO-led bombardment to protect civilians from fugitive dictator Moammar Gadhafi. Canada joined other countries this past spring by recognizing the Libyan rebels, the National Transitional Council, as the true representatives of the Libyan people.

Two major Canadian firms, the oil company Suncor and the engineering giant SNC Lavalin, have significant operations in Libya.