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6,000 Letters Opposing Canada-EU Trade Talks Delivered to Canadian Mission to European Union
BRUSSELS - July 20 - As negotiations on the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) continued in Belgium today, the Council of Canadians delivered more than 6,000 letters opposing CETA to the Mission of Canada to the European Union on Avenue de Tervueren in Brussels.
"This action sends a strong message to the Canadian government and to the CETA negotiators here that Canadians have serious concerns about this deal," says Brent Patterson, Director of Campaigns with the Council of Canadians, in Brussels this week for the fourth round of trans-Atlantic trade negotiations.
The letters call for the release of the full draft text of the proposed CETA deal and cross-country public consultations before the next round of negotiations can take place in Ottawa this October.
"I am very concerned by reports that this deal will be 'broader and more ambitious' than NAFTA by including services, regulatory harmonization, investor rights, and new and unreasonable limits on how local and provincial governments spend money," say the more than 6,000 letters submitted to the Council of Canadians to deliver to the Harper government.
The Council of Canadians was part of a civil society delegation to Brussels this week to explain to members of the European Parliament, labour unions, farmers and other groups about the growing concerns with the CETA deal in Canada. Mr. Patterson was joined by Stuart Trew and Meera Karunananthan, trade and national water campaigners respectively at the Council of Canadians, as well as by representatives from the National Union of Public and General Employees, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, and ATTAC-Quebec.