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Why is the Justice Dept asking the Supreme Court to quickly decide if they’ll hear the Khadr case or not?

Very interesting news today about the Omar Khadr case and the government’s decision to appeal to the Supreme Court; it appears some people’s suspicions (including me) about the government filing this appeal to stall on acting on Khadr may have been incorrect; the government is asking the SC to speed up a decision from them on whether or not to hear the case:

In an unusual move, federal lawyers swiftly filed written arguments to the Supreme Court of Canada yesterday, and asked for an expedited decision from the judges on whether to allow an appeal to proceed. A hearing is not automatic…Even Khadr’s Canadian lawyers were surprised by how quickly […]

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Liberals condemn Harper and the Conservatives for appealing Khadr decision to the Supreme Court

This came across my email just now: a statement from the Liberal Party and key Liberals condemning the Harper government’s decision to appeal the Omar Khadr case to the Supreme Court:

Liberal MPs today said Stephen Harper continues to treat some citizens as more Canadian than others by appealing, for the second time, the federal court’s order to repatriate former child soldier Omar Khadr from the notorious Guantanamo Bay prison. “Stephen Harper doesn’t care that we’re the only Western country with one of our nationals still in Guantanamo Bay,” said Liberal Consular Affairs Critic Dan McTeague. “He’s content to damage Canada’s once proud reputation by doing nothing to safeguard Mr. […]

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Harper decides to go to the Supreme Court to appeal the Omar Khadr ruling.

This is not exactly a shocker that he and his Conservative government would do this appeal to the Supreme Court to overrule 2 Federal court rulings that they are compelled to ask the US government to repatriate Omar Khadr:

The federal government will go to the Supreme Court in a bid to overturn court rulings that would require Ottawa to press for the return of Canadian Omar Khadr from the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, CBC News has learned..The Supreme Court will have to decide whether to review the case.

You could see them setting up for that appeal when Harper noted a week ago up in the […]

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1 part fundraising move, 1 part ideology = Harper’s stance on Omar Khadr (& other matters)

There’s a column in the Star today from Professor Errol Mendes, who teaches constitutional and international law at the University of Ottawa, on the background of the Omar Khadr case as it has wound through the Canadian courts. There is also an observation or 2 from Professor Mendes about Stephen Harper being offside with the court decisions, and he lists a reason about why he thinks Harper continues to oppose asking for repatriation, and why he potentially will appeal the latest 2-1 Federal Appeals Court ruling against him ordering him to ask for Omar Khadr’s repatriation to the Supreme Court of Canada:

The rulings by the Canadian Supreme Court in […]

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All Canadians are equal before the law…

..but the Harper government is arguing that it should be allowed to pick and choose which Canadians it should help overseas or in another country if they get into trouble, regardless of the circumstances. That’s part of their justification in launching an appeal of the Federal Court decision that orders them to seek the return of Omar Khadr home to Canada, and as Jeff points out, it appears as a Canadian you’ll get help if the Conservative government likes you – not so much if they don’t, or if you aren’t a member of an ethnic group that the Conservatives are trying to woo to vote for them:

This argument […]

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Conservative government appeals the Omar Khadr order to request his repatriation.

No surprise here for me about this decision by the Conservatives; they’re obviously going to go to the bitter (judicial) end to avoid any real action on Omar Khadr unless the Supreme Court forces them, or Obama beats them to the punch: (read more) […]

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Sunmedia columnist calls for the Canadian government to request Omar Khadr be sent home.

You know the Conservative government is getting forced into a corner when the most conservative and right-wing of the media in Canada have columnists on its editorial page today calling on the Conservatives to respect the Federal Court order and advocate for Khadr’s return to Canada, regardless of whether the government and other Canadians dislike Omar Khadr or his family. After recounting the serious charges against Khadr, and the historical dislike a lot of Canadians have against the Khadr family, the editorial urges nevertheless that “Harper should accede to this order without delay“:

Why should any of us lift a finger then, to help this young man, now 22? We […]

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CONfusion (on the Khadr ruling)

You’d think the Conservatives almost seemed unprepared for the Federal Court ruling yesterday ordering the Conservative government to press for the return of Omar Khadr as soon as possible from the US. Confusion seems to reign today, as different Conservative spokespersons and government ministers offer contradictory statements as to exactly what the government intends to do regarding an appeal or not.

If you check here, and here, you’ll see Foreign Minister Cannon’s spokesperson doesn’t seem to know exactly what’s going on. She changed her mind 3 times in 3 hours as to what exactly the government’s official position was – from “no decision has been made”, which seemed to […]

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Federal Court Judge rules Government of Canada violated Omar Khadr’s rights; must press for repatriation.

This is BIG news that has just broke:

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has an obligation to immediately demand the repatriation of Omar Khadr from Guantanamo Bay because his failure to do so offends fundamental justice, a Federal Court judge ruled Thursday. In a strong judgment, Judge Walter O’Reilly said Harper’s refusal to get involved violated Canada’s Charter of Rights. “The ongoing refusal of Canada to request Mr. Khadr’s repatriation to Canada offends a principle of fundamental justice and violates Mr. Khadr’s rights,” Judge O’Reilly said in his 43-page decision. “To mitigate the effect of that violation, Canada must present a request to the United States for Mr. Khadr’s repatriation as […]

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Obama and Ignatieff dicuss Omar Khadr.

True to his word, Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff and (presumably) Bob Rae discussed Omar Khadr with the President today. Here’s part of the discussion President Obama had with Iggy over the Khadr file, as made public by the Liberal leader:

The leader of the official Opposition said Obama told him that the detainees are being classified at different levels. But he did not indicate in which category Khadr was being placed. The president indicated he “was glad to know that the Canadian party is concerned about Mr. Khadr,” Ignatieff said. Ignatieff (also) said he told Obama if the Liberals form a government in the future that “we would be helpful […]

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