OTTAWA, May 29 (Xinhua) -- Canada's Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird announced Wednesday that Ottawa has declared an Eritrean diplomat stationed in Toronto persona non grata and ordered him to leave by June 5.
Baird said that Canada has taken steps to expel Semere Ghebremariam O. Micael, consul and head of the Eritrean Consulate General in Toronto, effective immediately.
"Mr. O. Micael must leave Canada no later than noon Eastern time on June 5, 2013," Baird said in a statement without providing any reason for the action. "Today's actions speak for themselves."
However, Baird said that the Eritrean government is welcome to propose another candidate to represent it in Canada, but that person must be prepared to play by the rules.h "Our resolve on this matter should not be further tested," Baird said.
Relations between Canada and Eritrea are limited. Canada's ambassador to Eritrea resides in Khartoum, Sudan, while Eritrea has an embassy in Washington that is responsible for Canada and a consulate in Toronto.
Canada has repeatedly made clear to Eritrea to respect United Nations sanctions regarding Somalia, Djibouti and Eritrea and prohibits Eritrean expatriates from financially supporting Eritrea.