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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. Khadr’s human rights.”

“Stephen Harper doesn’t have the power to decide which human rights apply to which citizens,” said Liberal Foreign Affairs Critic Bob Rae. “The government’s pattern of selectively respecting the rights of Canadians abroad is all too familiar – just look at what Suaad Hagi Mohamud, Abdihakim Mohamed, Abousfian Abdelrazik, or Omar Khadr have had to endure.”

“A Canadian citizen is a Canadian citizen, no matter what family you’re from,” said Liberal Defense Critic and Quebec lieutenant Denis Coderre. “This government is acting like it’s above the law, and no decision it makes can alter its obligation to protect the human rights of Canadians.”

It’s good to see the unequivocal condemnation by the Liberals of Harper desperately trying to be allowed to pick and choose which Canadians he wishes to defend and those he doesn’t. One bit of concern out of this press release though: mention is made that “Abdihakim Mohamed, a Canadian citizen who suffers from autism, suffered a further setback in obtaining a passport from the government to return home from Kenya, where he’s been stranded for three years.” I have not as of this posting seen any news about that – the last word in the media was that his mother had been asked to re-apply for a new passport for him, so I’ll have to see what’s being reported about his current situation.

UPDATE: It seems the last statement on Mohamed is referring to this story, which makes it appear like Canadian officials are still giving the family the run-around on helping him to get home.

UPDATE 2 @ 2:02 pm: The statement by the LPC and their key MP’s on this file is now at the Liberal website media release section.

UPDATE 3 @ 4:10 pm: For my NDP friends, who apparently believe no statement or press release from a political party means anything without the leader of that party commentating, Michael Ignatieff said this on CBC Newsworld regarding Omar Khadr’s situation:

“We don’t minimize the seriousness of the crimes for which Mr. Khadr is originally accused, but he’s done … seven, eight years in Guantanamo in horrendous conditions and we think it’s time he comes home and be reintegrated,” Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff said. “It’s not just Omar Khadr, it’s a question of whether this government stands up for Canadians overseas.”


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

  • I like the LPC trying to ACT liberal.

  • That’s nice. (snort)

    The Liberals should have brought Khadr home years ago.

  • Too bad underlings have to raise their voices, in the absence of former human rights advocate Michael Ignatieff. The latter is no doubt visiting a canoe museum or something.

    • Jimmy

      @Dr.Dawg, He probably didn’t even hear about becuase the Liberals are against taking a position on anything. Ohhhhh boy is he going to be made after he gets back fromt he museum.

    • @Dr.Dawg, Just for you, Dawg, Ignatieff has talked to the CBC about it (was on CBC Newsworld as well), and I’ve updated in my original blogpost. I note in the report I quoted that CBC got quotes from Iggy and the BQ House Leader, but nothing from the leader of the NDP. I suspect he was too busy exchanging pleasantries with Harper today to comment.. though perhaps he’ll speak up at this press conference of his after this tea and crumpets meeting he had with Harper.

      • Jimmy

        @Scott Tribe, I know Scott you don’t watch political conventions you just say wildly inaccurate things about them and while the Liberal convention had no resolution hit the floor so Iggy could take no position on anything. The NDP as a party passed a resolution to bring him home, too bad Liberals don’t vote on policy like the NDP eh?

        • Jon Pertwee

          @Jimmy, something actually happened at the Seinfeld 2 convention? I thought the big news was not being renamed the Double Penetration party.

  • The NDP spin is hilarious

    I guess they ran out of time on the “let’s get in bed with Harper” resolution too eh?

    • Jimmy

      @Anthony Di Domizio, If it means helping out Canadians then I say so be it. If however it means hurting women’s rights along with the rights of Canadians as the Liberals did then no way. Funny you guys had the whole summer with Harper I wonder what Jack can do in a day Anthony that your leader couldn’t in two months?

      • @Jimmy, funny how Jack Layton just a few months ago said Harper could not be trusted…but when it comes to saving his own hide, suddenly, it’s about Canadians.

        • Jimmy

          @Anthony Di Domizio, Funny I remember your leader dealing and voting with Harper many many times. Now that Jack might get something for Canadians instead of helping put the rights of Canadians back in the stone age you are all about not doing it. Funny how things change. I have always said when anyone is ready to deal with the NDP the NDP should deal if is going to get something right for Canadians. Medicare, Charter of rights and freedoms, CPP. All great NDP deals. All things Iggy could never get for being weak and spineless.

      • Jon Pertwee

        @Jimmy, I think you are overestimating the abilities of Jack Layton and the NDP to serve your argument. The NDP’s involvement or simple physical presence in the room cannot move mountains and stop waterfalls. In fact I find Layton takes deals that are way too little and spins them as a great success. The moment you stop believing that any politician can do that kind of stuff, you’ll be a step ahead.

        Layton, Ignatieff it doesn’t matter. Working with Harper is like trying to get a vicious dog to play nice with infants.

        I added that last little bit to get Frank’s knickers all in a knot.

  • I do wish they’d stop the “last Westerner in Gitmo” nonsense. I’m sure everyone who says this means well, but seriously, what are they saying? That it’s only justifiable to abandon non-Westerners to American torture and kangaroo tribunals? Canada should be demanding the release of all inappropriately held persons of any nationality.

  • Jimmy

    What is your leader saying? I could care less what a backbencher says.

    • @Jimmy, at least he isnt having a meeting to prop up the Tory government

      • Jimmy

        @Anthony Di Domizio, Yah Iggy can do that with out a meeting right? 79 times with out a meeting. No wonder he can’t get anything out of Harper on EI. Harper thinks they are on the same team.

        • @Jimmy, If Harper was so sure of that he wouldnt have requested a meeting with “Let’s Make a Deal!” Jack now would he?

        • Jimmy


          That is right he had a whole summer meeting with Iggy, now it is time for someone with real leadership skills and get the EI reform the pitiful Liberal leader couldn’t all summer. Liberal Fail.

        • Jon Pertwee

          @Jimmy, “now it is time for someone with real leadership skills and get the EI reform the pitiful Liberal leader couldn’t all summer. ”

          Well we know who is buying the beer if that statement is wrong. 😉

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