Friday, November 04, 2011

These things happen to rogue nations

The Supreme Court of Canada recently refused to overturn a lower court decision to deny extradition of an Al-Qaeda suspect who is an Canadian citizen to the U.S. It's not that the Canadians don't think the guy may have done something criminal; it's that they affirm that if they send him, they would be rewarding torture.

The high court has dismissed the federal government’s leave-to-appeal application in the case of [Abdullah] Khadr, the older brother of Omar Khadr, the last western detainee to be held at Guantanamo Bay

… Last year, the Ontario Superior Court decided there were sufficient grounds to send Khadr to the U.S. based on self-incriminating statements he’d given to the RCMP. However, the court ruled the U.S. had violated fundamental justice with its involvement in Khadr’s “shocking” mistreatment during 14 months of detention in Pakistan, a decision that was upheld by the Ontario Court of Appeal.

…Abdullah, who told CBC television before being detained in Islamabad in 2004 that every Muslim dreams of being a martyr for Islam, was accused by Washington of supplying missiles to Al Qaeda in Pakistan and conspiring to murder Americans abroad. The U.S. paid $500,000 to Pakistani intelligence to abduct him in Pakistan in October 2004. For 14 months, he was held secretly in that country, where he alleges he was tortured. … American agents also interrogated him in Pakistani detention and got him to admit he had procured weapons for Al Qaeda.

… Extraditing him would only serve to reward the Americans’ “gross misconduct,” [Ontario Superior Court Justice Christopher] Speyer ruled.

Toronto Star, 11/3/11

One small blow for the rule of law from north of the border.

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