Is anyone following the Maher Arar case?

Discussion in 'Canada' started by Said1, Jan 28, 2004.

  1. Said1
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    Said1 VIP Member

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  2. Isaac Brock
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    Isaac Brock Active Member

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    Absolutely! What's your take? I think a gross injustice was done by the US justice and immigration system. Not to mention, the Canadian foreign affairs office.

    I'll say it again, as I've said it forever:

    A Canadian, is a Canadian, is a Canadian, regardless of race, colour, creed or orientation.
     
  3. Moi
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    As much as it appears that something is askew, I don't think you can blame the INS. It seems awfully weird that Canada didn't want him, Syria didn't want him, Jordan took him and then handed him over to the Syrians. Even weirder that they tortured him for awhile than just let him go to the Canadians.

    Why didn't the canadians take him the first place and save him the trouble?
     
  4. Isaac Brock
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    Isaac Brock Active Member

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    Oh I think you can. Think about it this way. US's intelligence community is exponentially larger than our own and so I think we rely on it much more than our own. If the US tells us a terrorist in in our midst, we flinch. No doubt.

    Here's the facts (I can give you the sources, but i'm just copying/paraphrasing what I'm reading in the Winnipeg Free Press):
    -Aras taken into custody September 26, 2002
    -He was deported Oct 7th or 8th (depending on which account is true)
    -The Canadian foreign office was not contacted about the status of Ara until October 10th
    -Arar held a Canadian passport. A Syrian passport wasn't even on his person.

    That's not to excuse the Canadian foreign office by any means, but the INS has to accept its own responsibility in the matter.
     
  5. Moi
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    It may be that the INS did something wrong. However, my point was that it isn't automatically their fault. Unfortunately, we don't know anything about the communications between the USA and canada. Somehow, they must have made a tie to Syria...they didn't just see a canadian passport and decide just to call Syria on a lark.

    Until it's clear what exactly happened between the INS, canada, syria and jordan I don't think we can put the blame on the INS. Theereafter, blame may ultimately fall on them in whole or in part but nothing so far has proven that they are to blame.

    A search of the info on this reveals that this guy is indeed a Syrian citizen as well as a canadian one. Furthermore:

    CBC News website states:

    “Last week, Graham said that U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell had confirmed to him that CSIS and the RCMP provided American authorities with information on Arar before he was shipped off to Syria. “

    “He was accused of having ties to Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda network and deported to Syria, the country where he was born.

    The CBS News program 60 Minutes II reported on Wednesday night that Canadian authorities were told of Washington's plan to deport Maher Arar to Syria and that they approved.
    The Canadian government announced earlier this month it would investigate leaks by unnamed government officials who alleged Arar trained at a terrorist camp in Afghanistan.”
     
  6. Zhukov
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    Does anyone know when this Abdullah Almalki was taken into Syrian custody? Perhaps while being tortured he fingered Aras under duress, word got out to INS and they picked him up when he showed up in NYC. Seems unlikely we'd deport a Canadian/Syrian citizen to Jordan without some sort of rationale.
     
  7. Said1
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    There are many things that do not add up, but I also do not think the blame falls on INS alone. I really think Canada gave to go ahead to deport him. It seems as though there was an awful lot of effort placed on gathering information on this one guy for each government to be acting independently of the other. Seriously, who told CSIS agents when he would be arriving back in Canada in the first place? I doubt they were waiting around the airport for weeks hoping he would just show up. The whole thing stinks, and I agree a Canadian, is a Canadian, is a Canadian.

    I must admit I was not following this case until I heard Bill Graham claim (on CPAC no less) to know nothing about American deportation laws when being questioned about the Arar case. This was one year after Arar was deported - Uhhh Bill....didn't they tell you you need to know that when they hired you? How stupid does he think the Canadian public really is???

    Maher Arar is very lucky, his wife just wouldn't give up. I live in Ottawa, and that woman was relentless - pretty awesome if you ask me.
     
  8. Isaac Brock
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    They deported Arar first, than Almalki. He's still there. The point is, is that you CANNOT deport a Canadian to another country. That runs in contrevenance to the Geneva convention. If he committed a crime he must be tried in the US. Apparently, there has been no word as to why as of yet.
     
  9. Isaac Brock
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    Yeah, I mean good on her really. I don't know much of the CSIS angle other than they were tipped of by US intelligence services. I hope he gets justice, I truly do.

    Btw, is Ottawa getting that nasty cold? In Winnipeg it was -50C with the windchill this morning.
     
  10. Said1
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    I'm fairly certain the same 60 minutes special mentioned above quotes Seria as finding him innocent based on the evidence provided to them by Canada and USA. A little strange considering they beat a confession out of him. The law firm which has taken on his case is top notch, they have infor regarding the case on their web site if anyone is intersted www.edelsonandassociates.com. I think things may turn out for him in the end - if that's possible given the circumstances.


    I really hope we sent the cold on to you Brock :D. It's been very cold here for the last two weeks, but not -50, more like -35. It's a very blamy
    -15, with a mild windchill of -25 right now. I think it's supposed to warm up a bit over the next few days, but you know what that means.....more snow :mad:
     

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