Sunday, March 7, 2010

Canada wanted Afghan Prisoners Tortured: Legal Expert

Legal expert: Canada Wanted Afghan Prisoners Tortured.

Even before this new accusation was made Harper had prorogued parliament in part because of embarrassing opposition questions about transfer of detainees to Afghan authorities. Now the situation has become far worse. The government will no doubt refuse to do anything on the grounds of national security but to cover its fanny the government will ask a retired Supreme Court Judge Frank Iacobucci to advise it on whether release of documents would be ""injurious". If the lawyer's claims are true it is obvious that the release of the documents would have injurious effects. Some people could be charged with war crimes. Iacobucci is a great choice. He is already known for the Iacobucci inquiry which can be found in summary here.That inquiry was carried out almost entirely in secret and with the three people on whose behalf it was called not able to testify or take part in the investigation of those who were involved indirectly in their incarceration in Syria and Egypt. Even Iacobucci concludes they were tortured. Iacobucci will not doubt collect a very handsome fee for his advice which may not even be made public depending on whether the government likes it or not.Canada wanted Afghan prisoners tortured: lawyer
Unredacted documents show officials hoped to gather intelligence, expert says

CBC News

Federal government documents on Afghan detainees suggest that Canadian officials intended some prisoners to be tortured in order to gather intelligence, according to a legal expert.If the allegation is true, such actions would constitute a war crime, said University of Ottawa law professor Amir Attaran, who has been digging deep into the issue and told CBC News he has seen uncensored versions of government documents released last year."If these documents were released [in full], what they will show is that Canada partnered deliberately with the torturers in Afghanistan for the interrogation of detainees," he said."There would be a question of rendition and a question of war crimes on the part of certain Canadian officials. That's what's in these documents, and that's why the government is covering up as hard as it can."......Diplomat Richard Colvin says he warned top Canadian officials as early as 2006 that Afghan detainees handed over to Afghans were subsequently being tortured. ....However, Attaran said the full versions of the documents show that Canada went even further in intentionally handing over prisoners to torturers."And it wasn't accidental; it was done for a reason," he said. "It was done so that they could be interrogated using harsher methods."..."High-value targets would be detained under a completely different mechanism that involved special forces and targeted, intelligence-driven operations," Richard Colvin, a former senior diplomat with Canada's mission in Afghanistan, told a parliamentary committee last November.Colvin claimed that all detainees transferred by Canadians to Afghan prisons were likely tortured by Afghan officials. He also said that his concerns were ignored by top government officials and that the government might have tried to cover up the issue..
The Conservatives insist that releasing uncensored files on the issue would damage national security. On Friday, Justice Minister Rob Nicholson asked former Supreme Court of Canada Justice Frank Iacobucci to review whether there would be "injurious" effects if some Afghan detainee documents were made public."Parliament is supreme," said Ontario NDP MP Paul Dewar. "What this is, is a skate around Parliament.""Who knew what and when, and who allowed the continuing saga of Afghan detainees being sent to a potential risk of torture?" Dosanjh said.It's not clear whether the government will make Iacobucci's advice public. Moreover, he is not a sitting judge and can't legally rule or force the government to do anything

1 comment:

leftdog said...

Hi Ken! We continue to enjoy your blogsite. Even though your home base is now in Manitoba, I've take the liberty of adding you to our blog aggregator ... Saskatchewan Progressive Bloggers Cheers!