Char­ter rights don’t dis­ap­pear

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - EDITORIAL -

Re: Khadr guilty of high trea­son, The Guardian, July 13.

Don­ald Bartlett should first do his home­work be­fore opin­ing on Omar Khadr. His com­ment piece is rid­dled with far too many mis­takes to re­spond in a brief let­ter.

Suf­fice to say that Mr. Khadr did not for­feit his rights and it is not up to peo­ple like Mr. Bartlett to de­ter­mine who has rights and who does not.

That’s why we have a Cana­dian Char­ter of Rights and Free­doms — and it ap­plies to all Cana­di­ans ir­re­spec­tive of whether we like them or not.

The fact of mat­ter is that CSIS in­ter­roga­tors knew full well that Khadr, pro­tected by in­ter­na­tional covenants on child soldiers, was be­ing tor­tured in that hell-hole called Guan­tanamo.

Ergo, they were com­plicit in his tor­ture and fail­ure to pro­tect his le­gal rights.

That’s why the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that Cana­dian in­tel­li­gence of­fi­cials had of­fended “the most ba­sic Cana­dian stan­dards about the treat­ment of de­tained youth sus­pects.”

So Ot­tawa does need to pay, and to pay dearly, so that it will think twice the next time be­fore vi­o­lat­ing the Char­ter rights of a Cana­dian ci­ti­zen.

It may not work, but at least that’s the hope.

Peter McKenna, Pro­fes­sor and Chair Depart­ment of Po­lit­i­cal Science Univer­sity of Prince Ed­ward Is­land

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.