Saudi Arabia appears to threaten Canada with 9/11-style attack

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Earlier this week, Riyadh froze all trade and education ties with Canada and expelled the country's ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

A pro-government Saudi Twitter account then provoked outrage when it posted - and then deleted - a 9/11-style digitally altered image showing a plane flying towards the Toronto skyline.

The diplomatic spat between Canada and Saudi Arabia that erupted over the weekend has left many wondering exactly what is going on.

"For Saudi Arabia to punish Canada, it's fairly easy because we're not an important country for them, either are they for us", he said.

The rupture, which underscores a newly aggressive foreign policy led by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, comes after Canada denounced a new crackdown on women and human rights campaigners in the kingdom.

"Both Canada and the US lost the Middle East market a long time ago. because they are at a freight disadvantage (with higher ocean shipping costs) to the European Union and Black Sea export markets", the consultant said.

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The feud between Canada and Saudi Arabia has escalated quickly since it began Friday, when Canada's Ministry of Foreign Affairs raised concerns about the kingdom's human-rights record following the arrests of several prominent human-rights activists.

The ministry also announced "the freezing of all new trade and investment transactions with Canada while retaining its right to take further action".

The United States said Tuesday that both Canada and Saudi Arabia are "close partners" of the USA, and asked the Saudi government for more information of the detention of several activists.

The fallout is a result of a tweet from Global Affairs Canada calling for the kingdom to immediately release jailed human rights activists.

Canada doubled down on Monday. Spokeswoman Marie-Pier Baril reiterated her country's position "for the protection of human rights, very much including women's rights, and freedom of expression around the world".

Speaking in Mississauga, Finance Minister Bill Morneau said it's important the government bring Canadian values into its dealings around the world.

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Samar Badawi is a famed women's right activist and is the sister of Raif Badawi, a blogger sentenced to 1,000 lashes and 10 years for insulting Islam by a Saudi Arabian court in 2014.

Saudi Arabia has frozen all trade, expelled Canada's ambassador and ordered its citizens studying in Canada to leave.

But the 32-year-old has simultaneously pursued a combative foreign policy - including leading a blockade of neighbouring Qatar and a bombing campaign against Iran-backed Huthi rebels in Yemen - while cracking down on dissent at home.

Amnesty International noted Ms Badawi has been repeatedly targeted and interrogated by Saudi security forces for her human rights activist.

Mr Alzayani criticised Canada's statements and unsubstantiated allegations that he said violate the worldwide diplomatic norms and represent a flagrant and unacceptable interference in the internal affairs and encroach on the United Nations charter, the Bahrain News Agency reported.

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