Former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney said Canada should not boycott the upcoming Commonwealth meetings in Sri Lanka.
Mulroney said the 53-nation Commonwealth is a powerful group and Canada should work within it to make a statement.
For example, Mulroney pointed to the accomplishments of Prime Minister John Diefenbaker who, at the 1961 Commonwealth leaders’ meeting, denounced South Africa’s apartheid policy and joined forces with Asian and African government leaders to push through a resolution making racial equality a condition of Commonwealth membership.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced earlier this month that he would boycott November’s Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting in Sri Lanka because of the country’s failure to investigate certain allegations during the war.
Montreal Gazette states that Deepak Obhrai, the parliamentary secretary to the minister of foreign affairs, will attend the meetings in Harper’s absence.