Fahmy, Amnesty call for ‘charter’ to protect Canadians jailed overseas

Now free from the Egyptian prison that held him for more than a year, Fahmy hopes the feds will defend others like him


OTTAWA – Canadian journalist Mohamed Fahmy is leading the call for a new law that would lay out how Canadian politicians and bureaucrats should proceed when citizens are detained overseas.

Fahmy, Amnesty International and other civil society groups want to see a protection charter that would give transparency to a process that appears to be applied unequally and unevenly around the world.

Fahmy was freed from an Egyptian prison last fall after spending more than a year behind bars on terrorism charges following a court case that was the subject of broad international criticism.

He says in an era where many countries are rolling out security laws that lead to human rights violations, it is more important than ever for Canada to have clear standards on how it will assist its citizens.

In addition to a law enshrining the right to consular assistance, the charter calls for more protection for Canadian journalists abroad, consistent support for death penalty clemency and more oversight of national security agencies.

Fahmy met today with Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion to discuss the charter and says he has high hopes for the new Liberal government’s approach to diplomacy.


Fahmy, Amnesty call for ‘charter’ to protect Canadians jailed overseas

  1. Why even give Fahmy air time? He was a Egyptian citizen/resident of Egypt, engaged to a local Encryption at the time. He was no tourist, no guest, no visitor in little. Just a Egyptian with ties to Muslim Brotherhood terrorism. Did not even pay Canadian taxes nor hold property here.

    But then caught, he used Canadian citizenship like a dish rag. Canadian of convenience. Really just a criminal minded idiot using the system, propelled by media that makes him known. Enough of this nobody. Tell him to flip burgers for a living and to pay his taxes.

  2. Like it or not, any kind of “Charter” we could cook up would be worth about as much as the scrap value of the paper it’s written on. Sovereign nations are exactly that- sovereign. The acid test for such an idea would be to determine how we would feel if the US Congress insisted upon American intervening in the case of an American charged in Canada for an offense that carries a much harsher punishment in the USA than here. You’d be able to hear Maude Barlow screaming from space.
    We don’t have to like how other countries operate, and it’s always a good idea for Canadians abroad (and I have a hard time calling a man such as Fahmy, for whom Canadian citizenship has been largely a construct of convenience) to choose their actions wisely.
    While we have expended considerable efforts to have Fahmy freed, our own country has a despicable record when it comes to aiding and abetting the course of justice for our American friends. Millions of tax dollars were expended delaying, and thus denying, the course of justice for the people of California when Charles Ng sought and was granted a form of asylum here. We’ve spent hundreds of thousands of Canadian tax dollars on the Ronald Smith case, in direct contravention of the wishes expressed by the people of the State of Montana in their state elections. We actively intervened in the co-case of Glen Burns and Atif Rafay, in a conspiracy triple-homicide, again in direct contravention of the expressed wishes of the people of Washington State.
    Especially in the cases of Ng and and Burns-Rafay, our first and most pressing obligation was to deliver these known fugitives to the proper jurisdictions where they could face a proper trial. We, in our great hubris borne of our sanctimonious adherence to progressivism, failed utterly to accept the prima facie evidence that these accused would have been given fair and just trials. We would not fail to deliver an accused murderer to Great Britain, Norway, France, or Australia because we would have the same faith in their system of justice as our own. But, we allowed elected and unelected people in this country to use our own money to delay and deny justice to the victims of heinous crimes in the country right next door, simply because some believed that their disdain for capital trumped the democratically expressed beliefs of the people of Washington and California.
    We can bleat all we want about protecting Canadians abroad, but any such charter would be worth about as much as California’s and Washington’s laws were here, when they bumped up against people for whom justice had no value.

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