Demonstrations at Canadian embassy for Mining Waste: PM hand $25 Million for youth & Women

Protesters picket the Canadian Embassy to coincide with the official visit of Prime Minister Stephen Harper on Friday. The environmental activists are demanding a stop to alleged long-standing environmental crimes of Canadian mining corporations in their country. (Bullit Marquez/Associated Press)

Before the prime minister's arrival on Friday evening, environmental activists were picketing the Canadian embassy in Manila.

Protestors called for an end to alleged long-standing environmental crimes of Canadian mining corporations in the country, including the 1996 spill of an estimated 3 to 4-million tons of tailings from the Marcopper Mine into the Boac River.

Vancouver-based Placer Dome was a part-owner and manager of that mine.

Harper hands millions to Philippines to help youth, women

Prime Minister Stephen Harper showed up here Saturday with a $25 million cheque to help improve women's rights here and to help young Filipinos find work.

After a 40-minute meeting with Filipino President Benigno Aquino III, the two men also signed an agreement aimed at boosting exports by Canadian defence and security firms.

"Exports are key to growth," Public Works Minister Rona Ambrose said via Twitter, noting that the Canadian defence and security industry employs about 110,000 in Canada.

Harper announced that Canada would provide $10 million over the next five years to promote the rights of women in the Philippines and seven other Southeast Asian countries.

Harper also announced that Canadian taxpayers would provide $15.5 million over four years in an effort to help promote economic growth and employment in the Philippines, mostly by providing advice and assistance to a variety of Filipino government agencies.

During his day in Manila, Harper and his wife Laureen were scheduled to lay a wreath at the Rizal Monument, a memorial to the 19th century Filipino nationalist and martyr Jose Rizal.

The two will also attend an official lunch at the MalacaƱang Palace, the official residence of the Filipino president.

The Harpers will spend the afternoon touring Fort Santiago, one of the most important historical sites in Manila. Construction was started on the fort in 1590, and the building was the main defense establishment for the spice trade between the Americas and Europe for more than 300 years.

Harper will conclude his day with a meeting of business leaders here.

The Harpers end their week-long swing through Asia on Sunday in Hong Kong at a Remembrance Day ceremony at Sai Wan Cemetery; the final resting place for Canadians killed defending Hong Kong in the Second World War.

CBC News

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