Gail Davidson – executive director Lawyers’ Rights Watch Canada endorses our petition.
From the very early days of Omar’s capture and illegal detainment in notorious U.S. military prisons Bagram and Guantanamo, Gail Davidson and Lawyers’ Rights Watch Canada were critical of Canadian government policy and advocated for Omar’s immediate repatriation. For many years Gail and LRWC have worked with the International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group to hold Canada accountable regarding our obligations under the UN Convention against Torture and ongoing violations in the case of Omar Khadr. Another contribution from Gail has been her critical examination of the mainstream media which provided biased and inaccurate information about the case:
”Omar Khadr did not “plead guilty”, was not charged with crimes or “war crimes” and was not sentenced. The terms, plead guilty, crimes and sentenced are all words understood to refer to known concepts within our criminal law system. Crimes are violations of statutory penal law; war crimes are serious violations of international humanitarian law; a guilty plea is the accused’s freely and voluntarily given confession in open court to the crime(s) with which he has been charged; statements not made voluntarily are inadmissible; sentencing is the judgement made by a court after an accused is convicted according to law. Imposition of sentence, as done by the Guantanamo Bay military tribunal, “without previous judgment pronounced by a regularly constituted court, affording all the judicial guarantees which are recognized as indispensable by civilized people” is a gave breach (i.e. a crime) of the Geneva Conventions and a crime in Canada. In the Omar Khadr case there were no war crimes and no guilty plea and the imposition of sentence was itself a crime against the Geneva Conventions.
These terms invite readers to accept falsehoods which in turn legitimize atrocious violations of Omar Khadr’s rights, prevent the remediation recommended by the United Nations Committee against Torture and shield state authorities from accountability.”
Please sign the petition and remind the federal government of Canada’s moral and legal obligation to offer redress for the atrocious violations of Omar Khadr’s rights.
The Free Omar Khadr Now Committee