LETTER FROM OTTAWA: CANADA'S DETAINEE SCANDAL IN AFGHANISTAN BEFORE THE COURTS

  • Amir Attaran
Keywords: International Law, Detainees, Afghanistan, Human rights, Torture

Abstract

In 2007, Canada’s government became embroiled in an international scandal when journalists reported that 30 persons detained by the Canadian Forces and transferred to Afghan custody were tortured. Leaked government documents prove that Canadian diplomats were aware that persons in Afghan custody could be tortured, at the dates when the Canadian Forces authorized the detainee transfers to occur. A judicial review has been launched in the Federal Court alleging that the Canadian Forces are violating the constitution, specifically the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, in transferring detainees to known torturers. This paper discusses both the facts underpinning Canada’s detainee scandal, and the Canadian jurisprudence which will be decisive as the matter heads to the courts for resolution.

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Published
2008-09-01
Section
Legal Commentary