International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group
November 16, 2018
Monia Mazigh: Mohamed Harkat should never be deported to torture 09/11/2018 - I first heard about the case of Mohamed Harkat in December 2002. It was a dark time for me and my family. My husband, Maher Arar, was detained in Syria; I had become a single mother with two young children, living on social assistance. The whole world was swept with anti-terrorism policies: if you were an Arab Muslim man, you would be at high risk of racial profiling, interrogation and eventually deportation to torture. I learned about the case of Mohamed Harkat when I saw his wife, Sophie Harkat, on the front page of the Ottawa Citizen, making an emotional plea for the release of her husband. I immediately felt a sense of sympathy for her. I felt we were fighting a similar battle. We were two women caught in the legal aftermath of 9/11, trying to bring justice to their loved ones, but surrounded by a wave of suspicion and a climate of fear. [...] After 16 long years fighting his security certificate, today Mohamed Harkat is still threatened with deportation to his native Algeria. The secret evidence that led to his arrest has been destroyed by Canadian Security Intelligence Service, the informants used in this case were never cross-examined, and we learned through court proceedings that some of that "evidence" was collected through a  suspect named Abu Zubeydah , who is still detained in Guantanamo Bay and who was waterboarded 83 times and subjected to torture such as sleep deprivation, forced nudity, and confinement in small dark boxes. Mohamed Harkat escaped Algeria in 1990, at the start of the civil war that ravaged his country of birth for over a decade. He left to live in Pakistan and later came to Canada as a refugee claimant fearing for his life if he returned to Algeria. His arrest and subsequent imprisonment and treatment in Canada make him a perfect candidate for immediate arrest and detention in Algeria if deported there by the Canadian government. Read more - Lire plus

Panel Discussion: Extradition after Diab
CPIJ 02/11/2018 - Watch the panel discussion - Extradition after Diab - which was organized and financed by the Canadian Partnership for International Justice in the context of the 47th Conference of the Canadian Council on International Law , held in Ottawa on November, 2nd, 2018. The participants - Professor Craig Forcese (moderator), lawyer Don Bayne, Professor Rob Currie, and Professor Joanna Harrington - provide a clear and comprehensive analysis of key issues that will need to be addressed in the eventual reform of Canada's Extradition Act. Watch - Visionner
Half Million Killed by America's Global War on Terror 'Just Scratches the Surface' of Human Destruction
Common Dreams 09/11/2018 - United States' so-called War on Terror has killed about half a million people in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, according to a new estimate from the Costs of War Project at Brown University's Watson Institute. "This new body count signals that, far from diminishing, the war is only intensifying," Stephanie Savell, co-director of the project, pointed out in a  piece  for Axios. The overall death toll "is an increase of 113,000 over the last count, issued just two years ago." The new  report  (pdf) estimates that since 2001, between 480,000 and 507,000 people have been killed because of war violence in those three nations—a tally that does not include "the more than 500,000 deaths from the war in Syria, raging since 2011, which the U.S. joined in August 2014," and "indirect deaths," or those killed by war's impact on public health, such as limiting access to food, water, hospitals, and electricity. About half of those killed were civilians—between 244,000 and 266,000 across Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. Up to 204,000 of them were Iraqis. [...] Neta C. Crawford, a Boston University political science professor who co-directs the Costs of War Project, argued in the report's conclusion that there is a need to keep the public more informed about the consequences of the seemingly endless wars in the Middle East in order to drive demands for improving U.S. foreign policy. "This update just scratches the surface of the human consequences of 17 years of war," Crawford wrote. "Too often, legislators, NGOs, and the news media that try to track the consequences of the wars are inhibited by governments determined to paint a rosy picture of perfect execution and progress." Read more - Lire plus

Canada stays mum on Saudi arms sales, CSIS chief hears Khashoggi recordings
The Canadian Press 13/11/2018 - The Canadian government is showing no signs of toughening its stance on arms sales to Saudi Arabia, even after Canada's spy chief heard a recording of the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. When asked Tuesday how Canada intends to proceed from here, Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland reiterated Ottawa's position that no new weapons-export permits will be signed for Saudi Arabia for now. “We are reviewing our arms sales to Saudi Arabia in view of this killing and, obviously, during this period of review no new arms export permits will be signed,” Freeland said in Windsor, Ont. That's no different from what Canada's been saying for weeks. CSIS director David Vigneault recently travelled to Turkey to listen to the recording Turkish authorities have of Khashoggi's killing and briefed Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as well as other top officials upon his return. Read more - Lire plus

Supreme Court hears case on migrant detainees’ rights to challenge incarceration
The Canadian Press 14/11/2018 - A man from Pakistan wants Canadian law to give migrants being held in detention the ability to challenge their imprisonment in front of a judge. The Supreme Court of Canada heard arguments Wednesday on a case asking for immigration detainees to be given access to "habeas corpus"— a legal provision allowing anyone being held in custody the right to challenge their detention before a judge. Currently, migrants who do not hold Canadian citizenship can only challenge detention through an immigration tribunal or a judicial review. The case was brought by Tusif Ur Rehman Chhina, a Pakistani man who sought refugee protection in Canada in 2006, but was later detained after authorities learned he had a criminal record. The Immigration and Review Board held 12 reviews of his detention and each time ordered that he remain incarcerated. He has since been deported back to Pakistan, but his lawyers have continued to pursue the case. A long list of interveners have also signed on, including Amnesty International, the Canadian Council for Refugees, the Canadian and B.C. Civil Liberties Associations, the Canadian Prison Law Association and Community and Legal Aid Services Programme. They argue migrant detainees do not always receive a fair hearing by these methods, and sometimes end up incarcerated indefinitely. "The onus is on the detainee to actually prove why they should be released," said Swathi Sekhar of End Immigration Detention Network, another intervener in the case.
"On the other hand, in a habeus corpus application, the government is forced to justify legally and substantively why that person is in prison. This is a really critical difference for anyone who is trying to challenge their detention." Read more - Lire plus

ICE Is Imprisoning a Record 44,000 People
The Daily Beast 11/11/2018 - The number of people detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement has hit an all-time high, according to recent statistics reviewed by The Daily Beast. That massive increase in detentions by the highly controversial agency has prompted questions from rights groups about how Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) obtained the money to place into its custody 4,000 more people than Congress has funded. Earlier this year, when facing a similar shortfall, the Department of Homeland Security, ICE’s parent organization, quietly moved nearly $100 million dollars out of other areas of its budget, including the Federal Emergency Management Agency, prompting an outcry from a prominent senator. That senator, Oregon Democrat Jeff Merkley, told The Daily Beast it was unsurprising that the Trump administration was “exceeding historic high water marks of detainees to pursue their ideologically driven policy agenda.” But Merkley, a member of the powerful Senate appropriations committee, demanded ICE account for how it had somehow found the money—something it and the Department of Homeland Security would not do in response to The Daily Beast’s questions. Read more - Lire plus

Iraq’s So-Called “ISIS Families”: Rounded up, Vilified, Forgotten
Just Security 14/11/2018 - Across Iraq, there are men, women and children – perhaps over 100,000 if one extrapolates from statistics the government has issued on people detained on terror charges — that society has labeled “ISIS families.” In some cases, their fathers, husbands or sons are alleged to have picked up arms with the Islamic State (ISIS) when the group took control of their village. In other cases, a family member merely chose to keep showing up for work at their local hospital or government office once ISIS took control of the area in which they lived. Most of these families are living in  camps  that the international community built for families displaced by the fighting between Iraqi forces and ISIS between 2014 and 2017. Though these camps house “regular” displaced families as well, they have become de facto  prisons  for these so-called “ISIS families.” What happens to these people may be one of Iraq’s most significant obstacles to national security and future stabilization. Over the last two years, I have visited over a dozen of these  camps  outside of Mosul, which ISIS took over in June 2014 and maintained control of for three years. The camps are run by a range of local and international humanitarian organizations. Since the fall of ISIS, most families with perceived ISIS affiliations have been  told  by their communities, tribal leaders, government offices, and even Iraq’s army that they are not  welcome  to return  home , and these camps are being used to enforce such policies. I have seen security forces at the gate deny families their right to freely come and go, either for a simple hospital visit or to return home. The root of the obstacles facing these families is something that on its face sounds somewhat benign: a security-screening  regime . Security officers have told me that when ISIS began taking territory, many Iraqi families fled those areas, and when they first came into contact with Iraqi or Kurdistan Regional Government security and military officials, gave them names of neighbors who they accused of taking up arms with ISIS. Forces that have a legal mandate to detain, hold and interrogate terrorist suspects, and even some that don’t, put these names on wanted lists — without much coordination between them. This can lead to for possible rearrests of people already cleared by one group for release. They have been using these lists to hold people, including in unofficial  prisons , and  prosecute  them, sometimes based on confessions extracted by  torture . Lawyers, as well as judges, that Human Rights Watch has spoken to across Iraq, say these lists create inherent problems because of the prevalence of common names — for example, a name like Muhammad Ahmed. If it is flagged, it can lead to anyone in Iraq with that name getting arrested, sometimes multiple times. “Same name” cases are swelling prison and court numbers, according to senior judges in courts in Nineveh and Baghdad. Staff at several local companies and organizations have told me about recent internal disputes, where one employee has threatened to add a colleague to one of these wanted lists — as this is proving to be an effective way of meting out personal or familial revenge. Read more - Lire plus
Canada rallies more than a dozen countries in calling on China to release ‘arbitrarily’ detained Muslims
The Toronto Star 15/11/2018 - Canada stood firm against Chinese criticism Thursday after the Trudeau government rallied more than a dozen countries in expressing concern to Beijing about its jailing of hundreds of thousands of its Muslim minority. A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson accused Canada’s envoy and 14 others of going beyond their diplomatic roles by sending a letter that expressed concern about the incarcerations of China’s Muslim minorities in re-education camps in the northwestern region of Xinjiang. [...] A well-placed source from one of the 15 signatory countries also confirmed to The Canadian Press that Canada led the effort to send the letter. The United Nations estimates as many as one million Uighurs and other predominantly Muslim minorities are being held in arbitrary detention. “Canada is deeply concerned by credible reports of the mass detention, repression and surveillance of Uighurs and other Muslims in Xinjiang,” said Adam Austen, a spokesperson for Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland. Read more - Lire plus
Muslim Students’ Association says executives receiving surprise visits from law enforcement
The Varsity 11/11/2018 - Officers have shown up unannounced to offices, homes asking for information since at least 2016. The Muslim Students’ Association (MSA) at U of T said that its executives have been receiving surprise visits from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) for at least three years. According to the group, officers have, on occasion, show up unannounced at executives’ homes. According to current and former MSA executives, officers have visited them on the basis of building community relations, as well as to seek information on a specific member of the group. The officers have always shown up in plainclothes. The most recent incident occurred over the summer, when an RCMP officer visited the MSA’s offices at 21 Sussex Avenue on the St. George campus. [...] The former MSA executive said that CSIS’ approach showed “ignorance on how radicalization happens, ignorance on how to deradicalize,” and suggested that law enforcement would have done better by involving community leaders to address the issue. “I think it’s an absurd way of trying to [keep] tabs,” he said. [...] In an interview with The Varsity, the current MSA executive team described this pattern of visits as very shocking. “This stuff shouldn’t be seen as normal… We’re talking about the safety and well-being of [U of T] students, particularly students of faith. This is not a joke,” said the executives. They added that they were worried about how this issue might stop people from getting involved with the MSA. The former executive said that during his tenure, he knew of students who had left the club after hearing about the visits from law enforcement. “We shouldn’t have to think at the back of our heads about the threat of being surveilled,” said the current executive team. They also emphasized that they do not want “this incident to be viewed in isolation,” saying that it speaks to a larger problem of Islamophobia. In an interview with The Varsity, Jasmin Zine, a professor of Sociology and Muslim Studies at Wilfrid Laurier University, said that these types of visits have been happening at MSAs around the country. Read more - Lire plus 
Holocaust survivor urges solidarity and justice 10/11/2018 - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Thank you for issuing a belated apology from Canada to the Jews from Germany who sought refuge here in 1939 as they desperately fled the Nazi murder machine. Unfortunately, your apology rings hollow when, in the name of Canadians and the whole Jewish people, you denounce the non-violent Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign, which Palestinians and their supporters around the world are using to pressure their Israeli persecutors and colonizers to respect Palestinian human rights and abide by international law. The BDS campaign embodies the humanitarian values we hold so dear by defending Palestinian victims of the illegal Israeli occupation of their lands, protesting their unequal treatment within Israel, and supporting their quest to be liberated from the world's largest open-air prison, where they are confined in Gaza. Your expression of regret for the “callousness of Canada’s response” in 1939 would resonate more convincingly if you would speak with equal empathy for unarmed Palestinians being shot down by Israeli snipers as they engage in non-violent protest marches. As someone who is a Holocaust survivor, I am alive today because I was hidden in France within Nazi territory by farming people inspired by love for all of humanity. We must all demonstrate the spirit of human solidarity that Canada failed to show in 1939 to counter the persecution and suffering of allafflicted peoples, including the Palestinians. Suzanne Berliner Weiss. Member, Independent Jewish Voices Canada. Source 

America’s long and painful history of domestic terrorism against racial and religious minorities
The Washington Post 09/11/2018 - The tragic shooting in a Pittsburgh synagogue late last month was the deadliest anti-Semitic act in U.S. history, an unspeakable hate crime that has triggered important questions about the fundamental makeup of American identity. This national soul searching must include an examination of the current presidency, one that has fueled racial divisions, stoked resentment over perceived “others,” and embraced a xenophobic, religiously intolerant and fear-driven notion of American nationalism. While the violence and virulent rhetoric might seem unique to this era, its roots are very American. Jews and communities of color have a long, painful and largely forgotten history of being targeted for widespread domestic terror in the United States. The entire landscape of U.S. history is pockmarked with the scars of violent racial assaults that targeted black people, in particular, in virtually every corner of the nation. Read more - Lire plus 
Trump warns antifa: Opposition to you could be tougher and ‘much more violent’
The Hill 14/11/2018 - President Trump on Wednesday warned members of the anti-fascist movement, commonly referred to as "antifa," that opposition to them could be "tougher" and "much more violent" if their critics decide to "mobilize." "They better hope that the opposition to antifa decides not to mobilize,” Trump told the conservative outlet The Daily Caller in an  interview . "Because if they do, they’re much tougher. Much stronger. Potentially much more violent. And antifa’s going to be in big trouble," the president continued. "But so far they haven’t done that and that’s a good thing." The left-wing antifa movement is known for its direct protests of events and figures that supporters accuse of spreading white supremacist and fascist ideals. The loosely-affiliated network of groups have participated in public protests of multiple Trump administration and GOP figures. Trump during the interview Wednesday said the groups that oppose antifa include "the military," "the police" and a lot of "tough people." Read more - Lire plus 
The Intercept 11/11/2018 - When Mariela Cerrato saw her daughter and son-in-law on the evening news in late July, flanked by masked police and described as terrorists, she was not surprised. She knew the authorities had been hunting the couple. Their business had been burned to the ground  just days before and a wanted poster with their faces had been  circulating  on social media. Paramilitaries in balaclavas had come to Cerrato’s house demanding that she disclose their whereabouts. But she didn’t know — the pair had been moving from safe house to safe house. The last time she had seen them in mid-July, they were preparing to flee their small city of Masaya, Nicaragua with hope of reaching Costa Rica. Now Cerrato’s daughter, Maria Peralta, and her husband, Christian Fajardo, are in a maximum-security facility in the country’s capital, Managua, facing over 30 years in prison. They are just two of more than 400 activists arrested and being prosecuted as part of Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega’s crackdown on protesters who have been calling on him to resign. Nicaragua plunged into violent upheaval after protests began on April 18, sparked by an unpopular change to the social security system. The demonstrations soon broadened, ballooning into a nationwide, student-led movement against Ortega, who critics say has imposed increasingly authoritarian rule during his 12 consecutive years in power. Thousands in the streets were met with well-armed police and paramilitaries, who fired into crowds, tortured and raped detainees, and arbitrarily detained leaders,  the United Nations found . Over 300 people have been killed, more than 2,000 injured, and 2,000 arrested. Read more - Lire plus 
University alerts students to danger of leftwing essay
The Guardian 11/11/2018 - An essay by a prominent leftwing academic that examines the ethics of socialist revolution has been targeted by a leading university using the government’s counter-terrorism strategy. Students at the University of Reading have been told to take care when reading an essay by the late Professor Norman Geras, in order to avoid  falling foul of Prevent . Third-year politics undergraduates have been warned not to access it on personal devices, to read it only in a secure setting, and not to leave it lying around where it might be spotted “inadvertently or otherwise, by those who are not prepared to view it”. The alert came after the text was flagged by the university as “sensitive” under the Prevent programme. The essay, listed as “essential” reading for the university’s Justice and Injustice politics module last year, is titled Our Morals: The Ethics of Revolution.  Geras  was professor emeritus of government at the University of Manchester until his death in 2013. He rejected terrorism but argued that violence could be justified in the case of grave social injustices. Waqas Tufail, a senior lecturer in criminology at Leeds Beckett University who wrote a report about Prevent last year, described the case at Reading as “hugely concerning”. Another Prevent expert, Fahid Qurashi of Staffordshire University, said the move showed how anti-terrorism legislation is “being applied far beyond its purview”. [...] Tufail added: “This text was authored by a mainstream, prominent academic who was well-regarded in his field, who was a professor at Manchester for many years and whose  obituary  was published in the Guardian. This case raises huge concerns about academic freedom and students’ access to material, and it raises wider questions about the impact of Prevent.” The text was identified as potentially sensitive by an academic convening the course. “This is almost worse because it means academics are now engaging in self-censorship,” Tufail said. Read more - Lire plus
Tell the Senate to Fix Bill C-59 before it's too late!
From mass surveillance to the No Fly List, the new National Security Act fails to undo past problems and brings in new powers that threaten our rights & freedoms. Send a message to the Senate that they need to fix Bill C-59.

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UPDATE Stop Mohamed Harkat's Deportation to Torture
Update: Your letter will now also go to your Member of Parliament. If you've sent a letter already, please send a new one so more MPs act to protect Moe's life and end deportation to torture.

If sent back to Algeria, Mohamed Harkat faces detention, torture and even death. No one should be deported to torture. Ever.
NEW Prime Minister Justin Trudeau: Don't send the Rohingya back to genocide
Dear Prime Minister,

I am calling on you to immediately pressure the UNHCR in Bangladesh to stop facilitating the refoulement of refugees from Bangladesh.

Please do everything you can to stop this scandalous process of pushing Rohingya refugees back toward the ongoing genocide.
EVENT Who is using our data identities?
Sat, Nov 24, 2018 1:00-5:00 PM
Somerset West Community Health Centre, 55 Eccles St, Ottawa

Who controls data, how it is used or ignored, can have significant short and long-term consequences on the participation and inclusion of various communities.
Join a community conversation and workshop with members of a wide variety of diverse communities to unpack the issues involved when it comes to data collection and usage.
Call on Justin Trudeau to ensure justice for Abousfian Abdelrazik
In September 2003, Canadian citizen Abousfian Abdelrazik was arrested in Sudan, while he was back in the country visiting his ailing mother. Over the next three years he was imprisoned for nearly 20 months and was held under house arrest for 12 months. He was denied a lawyer, and was never charged or brought before a judge. There were lengthy periods when he had no family or consular visits. During that time he was badly tortured in three different prisons. Not only did Canada fail to take steps to protect him, CSIS officials frequently obstructed efforts to secure his release. Those actions prolonged his detention, with no concern for the obvious risk of mistreatment he was facing.
Don’t invest my CPP contributions in Trump’s racist agenda
An investigation by the Guardian just revealed that the  Canada Pension Plan (CPP), is pouring millions of your pension dollars into the US private prison corporations that are executing Trump’s cruel and inhumane anti-immigration agenda. That’s your money.  If you’ve ever worked in Canada, you’ve paid contributions to the CPP fund. We can’t let our CPP contributions flow to corporations that are profiting from Trump’s cruel immigration policies.

Tell the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB): Stop investing our savings in private US prison corporations that are executing Trump’s cruel and inhumane anti-immigration agenda.
Parliamentary Petition: Release Edwin Espinal!
We call upon MPs to: 

- Urgently intervene in the case of Edwin Espinal, spouse of Karen Spring of Elmvale, arrested January 19, 2018, on trumped-up charges in the wake of popular protests; and

- Immediately ensure that Honduras release Espinal and four other political prisoners still held in inhumane maximum-security military prisons, and drop all charges against 22 political prisoners.
Remember January 29
On Jan. 29, 2017, a lone gunman entered a mosque in Quebec City and opened fire on dozens of Muslim-Canadian worshipers. By the time the shooting had ended, six had been tragically killed, and 19 more injured.  We, citizens and residents of Canada, call on the government of Canada to henceforth designate January 29th as a National Day of Remembrance and Action on Islamophobia and other forms of religious discrimination  as per the report from Parliament's Heritage Committee.
Five Eyes: Save encryption
Ministers from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the UK, and the U.S. have gone public with their plans for a huge attack on our personal security.

They want to force companies to crush the encryption that protects our private data and messages. But ordinary people need and use encryption every day, in everything from online banking to personal messaging in apps like WhatsApp.
Tell ministers to stop their attacks, and commit to protecting our privacy and security.
Iran: Release Saeed Malekpour!
Saeed Malekpour, an Iranian national with permanent residency in Canada, has been imprisoned in Iran since his arrest on 4 October 2008. In late 2010, he was initially sentenced to death for “spreading corruption on earth” in relation to a web programme he created for uploading photos which the Iranian authorities said was used on pornographic websites. This was an open source programme and Saeed Malekpour has maintained that the use of this web programme on other websites was without his knowledge. His death sentence was commuted to life imprisonment in 2012.
Les opinions exprimées ne reflètent pas nécessairement les positions de la CSILC - The views expressed do not necessarily reflect the positions of ICLMG.
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