by John McNamer
In the interests of truth and justice and the international rule of law, I urge you to move forward with a formal investigation of Canada's role in illegal torture and illegal rendition to torture since 2002.
Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda
Head of Information & Evidence Unit
Office of The Prosecutor International Criminal Court
To further document the extreme risk of torture for detainees transferred into the custody of authorities of the United States by Canada, please add the following information detailing the US Senate Intelligence Committee report regarding CIA rendition and torture programs to my "Request for International Criminal Court investigation of alleged war crimes by officials and military personnel acting on behalf of the Government of Canada." Your reference number for this file is OTP-CR-171/14.
Please note that among the 283 documentations provided in support of the above request is indisputable evidence that responsible top political and legal officials of the Government of Canada, particularly the Harper Government, have for many years been fully aware that Canadian political and legal officials, Canadian Forces personnel and Canadian intelligence service personnel have actively engaged in widespread support of illegal rendition and torture programs covertly operated by the CIA, the US military, Afghan security forces, and many other nations -- e.g., Syria.
The information about the "brutal" CIA torture programs just being "revealed" by US Senate officials has been well documented over the past decade and has been provided many times to responsible Canadian authorities, which can easily be verified in the above referenced file.
These responsible officials include the Attorney General/Justice Minister; Minister of Defence; Minister of Foreign Affairs; Royal Canadian Mounted Police; Governor General/Commander-in-Chief; Privy Council; Military Police Complaints Commission; Provost Marshall; Canadian Forces National Investigation Service; Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada; Prime Minister, and opposition party leaders.
All have remained silent, failing to exercise their various unique legal responsibilities under terms of the Geneva Conventions and the Rome Statute, and related domestic law. In large part due to this dark blanket of repressed silence which somehow covers all of Ottawa -- and by extension the rest of Canada -- Canadians will not hear much about the CIA torture report, even though it is a blockbuster worldwide story with large implications for many governments and individuals.
Torture has been a dead issue in Canada since the Harper Government's successful derailment, with heavy-handed intimidation tactics, of all legitimate attempts to investigate. This included threatened prosecution for the release of torture evidence such as the detailed information Canada`s top diplomat in Afghanistan Richard Colvin attempted to bring forward in 2009, and the unilateral axing of a parliamentary inquiry into torture complicity when the Harper Government was able to achieve a majority at election.
Colvin had said in remarks to a parliamentary committee that all detainees Canadian soldiers transferred for years to Afghan authorities likely ended up being tortured – even though many were possibly innocent. Colvin also described a startling pattern of indifference and obstruction to his attempts to warn higher ups of what was happening in 2006 and 2007. He went on to say Canada`s "complicity in torture" ultimately thwarted its military aims in the Afghan province of Kandahar. Ambassador Colvin was then prepared to hand over documents in support of his statements, on instructions from the House of Commons, but was stopped by threats of prosecution from officials of the Harper government.
As you can see in my documentations, Canada has been cited for "complicity in torture" by the UN Committee against Torture, named as a prime collaborator in CIA extraordinary renditions by the UN Special Rapporteur, and revealed as the nation whose airspace was second only to the US for being used by illegal rendition flights.
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