I recently posted about our fellow-citizen Abousfian Abdelrazik, a banned person in his own country, by law unable to work, have assets or receive support from other Canadians.
His lawyers are now pursuing his basic human rights on two fronts. First, an application has been made on his behalf, as I noted, to the new UN ombudsman in charge of overseeing the “1267” no-fly list. Secondly, in addition to his lawsuit against the Harper government for exiling him in Sudan and causing him to be falsely imprisoned and tortured there, he is challenging the Canadian legislation that has condemned him to unperson status.
Some of the “information” that got him added to the UN list was obtained from Abu Zubaydah. (Remember him? His name does keep cropping up.)
Another key part of the “1267” committee’s rationale was Abdelrazik’s alleged association with Ahmed Ressam, the so-called “Millennium Bomber.” That “association” included voluntarily testifying for the prosecution during Ressam’s trial in the US.
Nevertheless, on the basis of Zubaydah’s coerced statements and the bogus Ressam “evidence,” Abdelrazik has been harassed, persecuted, tortured, exiled, and (in defiance of the Charter) officially denied the rights that other Canadian citizens enjoy.
Moving on to his continued persecution in Canada, the legal basis for this stems from regulations issued by Order In Council that strip rights from any Canadian placed on the “1267” list. The only recourse the citizen has is to get himself removed from the list, a situation deemed Kafkaesque by Justice Russel Zinn, who ordered the government to return Abdelrazik from exile in June, 2009. The judge barely concealed his feelings of disgust about the list:
I add my name to those who view the 1267 Committee regime as a denial of basic legal remedies and as untenable under the principles of international human rights. There is nothing in the listing or de-listing procedure that recognizes the principles of natural justice or that provides for basic procedural fairness. Unlike the first Canadian security certificate scheme that was rejected by the Supreme Court in Charkaoui v. Canada (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration), 2007 SCC 9;  1 S.C.R. 350, the 1267 Committee listing and de-listing processes do not even include a limited right to a hearing. It can hardly be said that the 1267 Committee process meets the requirement of independence and impartiality when, as appears may be the case involving Mr. Abdelrazik, the nation requesting the listing is one of the members of the body that decides whether to list or, equally as important, to de-list a person. The accuser is also the judge.(22)
The Harper government, however, has remained firm. Another hard kick by the courts, it seems, will be necessary to force it to restore Abdelrazik’s rights. It would almost be worth keeping the Cons in power for a few more months just to see it delivered.