OTTAWA - The
Green Party of Canada is calling on Prime Minister Harper and
Immigration Minister Jason Kenney to explain the inconsistencies
surrounding which political leaders are allowed into the country.
“Minister Kenney decided to bar British MP George Galloway from Canada
because of his alleged support for Palestinian terror groups while
allowing Dick Cheney and George W. Bush, who many feel should be refused
entry under Canada’s international obligations due to their complicity
in allowing the torture of people detained by U.S. authorities. We
would just like some consistency,” said Green Leader Elizabeth May.
Cheney spoke in Vancouver on Monday. George W. Bush is slated to visit
Canada on October 20 as a guest of the mayor of Surrey British
Columbia. Human rights groups including Amnesty International and
Lawyers Against the War have said Canada has a duty to prevent Cheney
and Bush’s entry into Canada because of their record of sanctioning
torture methods. Both domestic and international laws have been cited,
such as the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, the
Convention against Torture and other Cruel, inhuman or degrading
treatment or punishment (CAT), the Geneva Conventions, the Crimes
against Humanity and War Crimes Act (CAHWCA) and the Criminal Code of
Canada. These groups claim Canada is providing safe haven from
prosecution by ignoring Bush and Cheney’s torture record and illegal war
cancelled a trip to Switzerland earlier this year because of the same
calls for his prosecution. The International Committee of the Red Cross
and the UN Committee on Torture have both reported their conclusions
that the US military engages in torture at the Guantanamo Bay prison.
took a lead in the global negotiations for an International Criminal
Court. Cheney and Bush represent a tough challenge for Canada as former
leaders of our closest neighbour and largest trading partner.
Nevertheless, we accepted legal obligations to pursue criminal actions.
Refusing George Galloway access to Canadian soil while welcoming Cheney
and Bush threatens to make a mockery of those obligations," said May.
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