Charmaine Noronha– June 3, 2012
The Canadian government on Saturday criticized a United Nations agency for issuing a report condemning Canada for complicity in torture and human rights violations in Afghanistan and Syria.
A report from the U.N. Committee Against Torture issued Friday said Canadian military commanders didn’t do enough to ensure the safety of detainees handed over to Afghan security forces during the Afghan combat mission, which ended last year, despite a substantial risk that they would be tortured.
The report also said the Ottawa government shared inaccurate information with Syrian authorities linking three Arab Canadians to al-Qaida, resulting in them being tortured in Syria. Officials shared the information before Abdullah Almalki, Ahmad Abou Elmaati and Muayyed Nureddin traveled separately to Syria on personal business between 2001 and 2003.
The U.N. agency also faulted changes to Canada’s immigration laws which it said may increase the risk of human rights violations including a legal provision that allows the Canadian government to detain and deport permanent residents or foreign nationals considered to be a security threat based on secret evidence that the accused is not allowed to see.