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In response, Canada pledged to continue advocating human rights.

A Saudi Twitter account shared a photo of a plane flying toward Toronto's skyline, evoking images of the September 11 terror attacks.

Since Monday social media has been saturated by the surprising news that Saudi Arabia made a decision to expel the Canadian ambassador, along with freezing trade and investment ties with Canada.

Soon after, the Saudi ministry of media said it had shut down the account amid an investigation into a complaint over it.

On Monday, Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland said there was "nothing new or novel" about Canada's long-standing position on human rights around the world, and that Ottawa will await more details from the kingdom before responding further.

"Canada does not understand its place and it tried to impose itself on the Kingdom's policies in its ministry of foreign affairs statement as if to place itself above other countries in the world", he said.

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

Freeland's tweet led to the kingdom ordering Canada's ambassador Dennis Horak to leave the country within 24-hours and freezing all new trade and investment transactions with Canada on Sunday.

The arrests last week brought criticism from the Canadian government.

His wife, Ensaf Haidar, and three children were granted Canadian citizenship earlier this summer, and live in Quebec's Eastern Townships.

Thomas Juneau, an assistant professor at the University of Ottawa, said it is hard to determine what the economic impact on Canada would be without specifics on which trade deals will be affected.

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

But the damage could be more significant if a $15 billion deal agreed in 2014 for Canada to sell Riyadh light armoured vehicles is scrapped, as thousands of jobs in Canada could be lost, Juneau said.

'There isn't a strong bilateral trade relationship and poking the Trudeau government likely resonates with Saudi's hawkish regional allies.

When asked about the contract, Freeland said the government "looks forward" to hearing from Riyadh about the future of the deal.


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