Foreign Minister John Baird says Canada doesn’t love military coups – but he suggests Egypt’s ex-president, Mohammed Morsi, is the author of his own downfall.
Canada is calling Wednesday’s ouster of Mr. Morsi a “coup,” but Mr. Baird also shrugged it off without any indignation when he spoke to Wall Street Journal reporter Brian Spegele while on a visit to China on Thursday.
Mr. Baird said Canada prefers democratic transitions, but added there was a “substantial amount of support” for Mr. Morsi’s removal. And, he said, Egypt is “nothing proximate to a full western-style liberal democracy.”
The Canadian foreign affairs minister said Egypt was in a middle ground that isn’t outright democracy. And while Canada normally expresses outrage when an elected president is ousted by the military – as it did for Mali last year, for example – Mr. Baird suggested Mr. Morsi was paying the price for his own actions.
“Listen, the president is accountable for his own actions,” he told the Wall Street Journal, according to an edited transcript posted on the Journal’s Canada Real Time blog. “Obviously, this is not an on or off switch, where it can be a democracy or non-democracy with the flip of a switch. Obviously, our preference is to see Egypt develop its freedom and democracy as it goes forward.”
Egypt's ambassador to Canada, Wael Aboulmagd, met
The Egyptian ambassador briefed Mr. Rosenberg on the events of recent days and on the road map for the future, government sources said. Mr. Rosenberg stressed Canada's desire to see Egypt move to aReport Typo/Error