Thursday, October 18, 2007

Nation Day of Action Against Secret Trials in Canada

Here is the public national call-out for the day of action against security certificates on October 20th. As mentioned recently on this blog, some of us here in Sudbury will be among the cities marking the occasion.

Coast to Coast actions 20 October 2007

Minister of "Public Safety" Stockwell Day is expected to introduce new security certificate legislation in Parliament any day now. The reform comes in response to strong public opposition to the security certificate - a symbol of injustice against migrants in Canada - and in response to the Supreme Court decision in February 2007 that the 'security certificate' process is unconstitutional.

This means that the government intends to maintain a two-tiered justice system, with one process for refugees and permanent residents and another for citizens. If it succeeds, this move will further entrench the use of secrecy and racial profiling in the Canadian legal system. It will help to normalize indefinite detention/house arrest for people who are deemed "suspect" by the spy agency CSIS. It will normalize increased government control and surveillance. All while leaving the door open to deportation to torture.

JOIN US on the cross-Canada day of action on 20 October to send a clear message to the government: no new security certificate process; immediately free those detained under this illegal law - or charge them and give them a fair and open trial.

1. Demands of day of action
2. Statements by security certificate detainees and family members
3. List of actions across Canada
4. What else you can do
5. List of organizations who have endorsed the day of action
6. Bios and photos of the secret trial five
7. For more information


The demands of the 20 October CROSS-CANADA DAY OF ACTION are:

1. No new 'security certificate' legislation;
2. Immediately free the five from all conditions or charge them and provide them with a fair and open trial;
3. End deportation proceedings against the five;
4. End deportations to torture; and
5. Close the "Kingston Immigration Holding Centre".


* Statement for 20 October 2007 by SOPHIE LAMARCHE: CLICK HERE Sophie Lamarche has campaigned for the release of her husband Mohamed Harkat since his arrest in December 2002; since his transfer to house arrest in summer 2006, she has been forced to supervise her husband.

* Statement for 20 October 2007 by MOHAMED HARKAT:
CLICK HERE Mohamed Harkat was arrested under a security certificate in December 2002; he was transferred to house arrest in summer 2006.

* Statement for 20 October 2007 by AHMAD JABALLAH:
CLICK HERE Ahmad Jaballah is the oldest son of Mahmoud Jaballah, who has been under a certificate since August 2001.

* Radio Canada "Maisonneuve en direct", interview with ADIL CHARKAOUI (12 October 2007): CLICK HERE Adil Charkaoui was arrested under a security certificate in May 2003, and was released from prison in February 2005, is currently under strict conditions. (French)

* Statement by LATIFA RADWAN to the People's Commission on Immigration Security Measures (April 2006): CLICK HERE Latifa Radwan is the mother of Adil Charkaoui; since his release from prison, she has been forced into the role of supervisor of her son. (French)

* CKLN Radio interview with HASSAN ALMREI (31 August 2005): CLICK HERE Hassan Almrei was arrested under a certificate in October 2001; he remains the sole detainee in the special prison for security certificate detainees, the Kingston Immigration Holding Centre.


Events are taking place from 19 October through to 28 October in a dozen places:

Saturday, 20 October
Meet at 4 Corners
* Walk through town led by a bagpiper.
* More info: Liz and Barney Barningham, tel. (519) 369-3268

Saturday, 20 October at 11am
McIntyre Park Gazebo, 83 Ave. & 104 St.,
* Teach-in with SPEAKERS (Dylan Handy, winner of the Maher Arar Essay contest on Human Rights; Martin Tweedale, Council of Canadians; Peggy Morton, ECAWAR; Paul Viminitz, Prof. of Philosophy, Univ. of Lethbridge; Marilyn Gaa, Edmonton Raging Granny) and MUSIC (The Edmonton Raging Grannies, Paula Kirman, Notre Dame des Bananas)
* Sponsored by: Edmonton Raging Grannies; Council of Canadians; ECAWAR; Earth's General Store; Edmonton Small Press Association; Edmonton Presbytery
* More info: 780-378-0173

Saturday, 20 October
Farmer's Market
* Leafletting

Sunday, October 28 from 1pm to 5pm
Room 224, Dalhousie SUB, 6136 University Ave (corner of University Ave and Seymour St)
* An Afternoon Workshop on challenging Canada's "National Security" Agenda and upholding Human Rights Abroad and at Home, Featuring a Session on Creative Protest and Nonviolent Direct Action: "Ending Secret Trials, Indefinite Detention, and Canadian Involvement in Torture"
* More info: NSPIRG, tel. (902) 494-6662

Saturday, 20 October, 12 noon
Meet at King and Benton Streets (Speaker's Corner, across from Market Square and Karen Redman's office)
* Rally
* More info: pacscollective[at] or call Alison or Nadeem at (519) 569-8085

Saturday, 20 October, 3:30 pm
Meet at Conservative Party headquarters, 30 Adelaide St. N. at Nelson, just north of the river
* More info: bethwarnerguthrie[at]

* Vigil and Letter-writing

Sunday, 21 October 2007, from 5pm
CÉDA, 2515 Délisle St., Lionel Groulx metro
* Panel, dinner and strategy session: The Other Arars
* More info: Coalition Justice pour Adil Charkaoui,,

Saturday, 20 October, 1pm
Human Rights Monument, Elgin Street
* Rally: Speakers include Monia Mazigh and Abdullah Almalki.
* More info: justicepourmohamedharkat[at]

Saturday, 20 October
Farmers Market
* Joining in weekly peace vigil
* More info: Amnesty International Orillia - Group 10

Saturday, 20 October 2007, 12 Noon
Sudbury Court House, 155 Elm Street
* Media Conference, "Many Canadians believes we live in a country where the government cannot lock you up while keeping the charges and the evidence are secret. Many Canadians are wrong."
* More info: Sudbury Against War and Occupation, tel. 705 675-8479

Saturday, 20 October, 12 noon
Meet at CSIS, 277 Front Street West,
* Rally and Walk to federal Court, Moss Park Armoury
* More info: tel 416 651 5800, tasc[at]

Friday, 19 October, 4:30-6:30 PM
Broadway Skytrain Station, Commercial Drive
* Leafleting, Readings, and Creative Resistance
* Organized by No One is Illegal-Vancouver and Siraat Collective.
* More information, noii-van[at] or tel. 778 885 0040


* Sign petition (petition at or available by email from tasc[at]
* Call or send a postcard to your MP, telling them to vote against the new security certificate legislation (postcards available from justiceforadil[at] or for download at; you can find the MP for your district at
* Get involved! Email tasc[at] (Toronto), justiceforadil[at] (Montreal), or justicepourmohamedharkat[at] (Ottawa) to find out how.
* Break the silence! Stand up and challenge racism and fear in your workplace, at schools, on the street, in your community centre.


The Day of Action is endorsed by many organizations and networks,

Solidarity Across Borders, The Council of Canadians, Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW), Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), Monia Mazigh, Quebec Public Interest Research Group (QPIRG) McGill, Rassemblement Outaouais contre la guerre, El-Hidaya Association of Montreal, Les Soeurs Auxiliatrices-Comité Justice sociale, Immigrant Workers' Centre, Coalition Justice for Adil Charkaoui, Table de concertation des organismes au service des personnes réfugiées et immigrantes (TCRI), Irene Mathyssen (MP London-Fanshawe), Collectif Échec à la guerre, Comité social centre-sud, l'Association pour une Solidarité Syndicale Étudiante (ASSÉ), Ligue des droits et libertés, NDP Québec, Jack Layton (MP, Toronto-Danforth), Libby Davies (MP, Vancouver East), Centre justice et foi, Wayne Marston (MP, Hamilton East-Stoney Creek and the NDP Advocate on Human Rights, Multiculturalism and Sport), Canadian Arab Federation, Canadian Peace Alliance, Forum Musulman Canadien / Canadian Muslim Forum (FMC-CMF), Quebec solidaire, Bill Siksay (MP, Burnaby-Douglas), Alternative Perspective Media / Regard Alternative Média (APM-RAM), Center for Constitutional Rights (New York), Alliance of Concerned Jewish Canadians (ACJC), Barnard-Boecker Centre Foundation, Bethune Institute for Anti-Fascist Studies, No one is illegal Fredericton, Comité action refugié-Montréal, Gerald and Maas, Canadian Association of Elizabeth Fry Societies, Palestinian and Jewish Unity (PAJU), No One is Illegal Montreal, 2110 Centre for Gender Advocacy, No One is Illegal - Toronto, Féderation des femmes du Québec, Coalition contre la brutalité policière Montréal, Chinese Canadian Redress Alliance / Alliance des sinocanadiens pour la réparation, Olivia Chow (MP Trinity Spadina), Association québécoise des organismes de coopération internationale (AQOCI), Canadian Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-CAN), Fédération des Congolais de l'étranger (FCE-Canada), Comité pour les droits humains en Amérique latine (CDHAL), South Asian Women's Community Centre (SAWCC), International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group (ICLMG), Canadian Council for Refugees, Action Refugiés Montréal, Toronto Action for Social Change, Campaign to stop secret trials in Canada, Justice for Mohamed Harkat Committee, No one is illegal Vancouver, Ontario Coalition against Poverty, Présence Musulmane Montréal, Jesuit Refugee and Migrant Service, NOWAR/PAIX, Nova Scotia Public Interest Research Group (NS PIRG), Executive of the Edmonton Presbytery of the United Church of Canada, Local Global Justice Committee of Edmonton Presbytery of the United Church of Canada, Justice & Peace Office of the Sisters of Providence of St. Vincent de Paul


* Mohammad Mahjoub, married with two children, is a torture survivor from Egypt who was accepted as a convention refugee in Canada in 1996. He was arrested in June 2000 in Toronto, but never charged. His certificate was upheld on the basis of secret suspicions in October 2001. He was moved to house arrest - 24 hour supervision and no leaving the home without permission - in spring 2007. He denies the allegations against him and asks for a fair trial in which he can clear his name if there is any case against him.

* Mahmoud Jaballah, married with six children, is a torture survivor from Egypt and a school principal who arrived in Canada in 1996. He was arrested under his second certificate in August 2001, days before his refugee hearing. He had previously been detained under a security certificate for seven months in 1999 before the judge deemed the certificate unreasonable in a very unusual decision. He was re-arrested under a new interpretation of the previous "evidence". The second was thrown out on a technicality; the third was finally upheld in 2006. He was moved to house arrest, under the same draconian conditions as Mahjoub, in spring 2007. Like Mahjoub, he insists on his innocence, and asks for a fair and open trial to clear his name if the government thinks it has something against him.

* Hassan Almrei, born in Syria and accepted as convention refugee in June 2000, was arrested under a certificate in October 2001; his certificate was upheld the same year despite objections to the lack of justice in the secret trial process. Since then, he has been threatened with deportation to Syria, even though it is well-known what happened to Maher Arar in Syria under similar allegations which proved to be baseless. Almrei was held in solitary confinement for over four years, and went on many hungerstrikes to protest his conditions, the longest lasting well over 100 days. He is currently the only detainee in the "Kingston Immigration Holding Centre". Like the others, he firmly rejects the allegations that are made against him by CSIS.

* Mohamed Harkat, married, born in Algeria, was accepted as convention refugee in Canada before being arrested in December 2002. Never charged, and never given a fair trial his certificate was upheld in 2005 under the unconstitutional security certificate process. He was transferred to house arrest in June 2006, under which he is never allowed to be alone, cannot leave home without the permission of the government and has many other harsh restrictions. He is still waiting for justice in Canada, though he has repeatedly asked for a fair and open trial if there is anything against him.

* Adil Charkaoui, married with three children, was born in Morocco and came to Canada as a permanent resident with his mother, father and sister in 1995; he was arrested in May 2003 and released under harsh conditions in February 2005. His certificate has not yet been reviewed by Federal Court. His successful legal challenge to the security certificate process brought down the legislation in February 2007. Like the others, he is still waiting for justice in Canada and in the meantime lives in the limbo of indefinite conditions and threat of deportation to a strong probability of torture.


Campaign to Stop Secret Trials in Canada
(416) 651-5800

Justice for Mohamed Harkat Committee
sophielamarche[at] or justicepourmohamedharkat[at]

Coalition Justice for Adil Charkaoui
tel. 514 859 9023

If you live in one of the cities where events are happening, please attend. Even if you do not, take a look at some of the resources, learn more about the issue, and take action where you are.

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