Posts Tagged ‘Peter McKay’
November 18 to 20, 2009 – Former Canadian diplomat Richard Colvin testified that Canadian Forces knowingly turned over detainees to Afghan authorities for torture.
In April 2007, Prime Minister Stephen Harper said publicly that Canadian military officials don’t send individuals off to be tortured. That was indeed our policy. But behind the military’s wall of secrecy, that unfortunately is exactly what we were doing.
As I learned more about our detainee practices, I came to the conclusion that they were contrary to Canada’s values, contrary to Canada’s interests, contrary to Canada’s official policies, and also contrary to international law. That is, they were un-Canadian, counter-productive, and probably illegal.
- Richard Colvin
- Video: Government under attack over Afghan detainee abuse allegations (March-May 2007)
Canadian F18 fighter jets intercepted a Russian bomber in the Arctic as it approached Canadian airspace on the eve of President Barack Obama’s visit to Ottawa.
March 21 to May 7, 2007 – Opposition parties attack the government over allegations of prisoner abuse by Afghan authorities as reported in a Globe & Mail article and audio slideshow on April 23. They accuse the government of violating the Geneva Conventions by knowingly handing detainees over to Afghans for torture, and demand the resignation of Defense Minister Gordon O’Connor.
The Opposition also cites an internal government report released by the Department of Foreign Affairs under access to information, claiming government cabinet ministers illegally influenced the civil service first to deny the existence of the report, and then to black out portions of the report as part of a “massive systematic cover-up”.
The Opposition further claims that the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission and the Red Cross do not have access to detainees as specified under the 2005 Afghan Detainee Agreement, and they accuse the government of lying to Canadians.
The Government says they are unable to confirm the Globe & Mail allegations, and they promised to investigate the issue further. The government also says that the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission and the Red Cross do in fact have access to detainees, and that they have been unable to confirm the Globe & Mail reports of abuse. They criticize the Opposition parties for taking the allegations at face value and implying the Canadian military and Minister of Defense are guilty of lying, misconduct and cover-up.
On May 3, the government signed a new detainee agreement that formally spells-out existing arrangements allowing Canadians unrestricted access to detainees.
The accusations seem to have damaged the government’s approval ratings according to a recent SES poll showing divided support for the government’s handling of the issue.
Green Party leader Elizabeth May and Liberal leader Stéphane Dion announced a deal between their parties to not run candidates against each other in their home ridings.
Dion supports including May in the televised leaders debate, and pledges to fight for her in Central Nova during the next election.
I will fight for 307 Liberals, plus Elizabeth May.
- Stéphane Dion
May says she supports Dion for Prime Minister in order to prevent Harper from being re-elected. She compares Stephen Harper to George Bush,vowing to avoid a scenario such as the last US Presidential election when Ralph Nader split the vote and helped re-elect George Bush.
NPD leader Jack Layton objects to the alliance, saying it is anti-democratic, while Conservative Monty Solberg says its a sign of weak leadership.
March 18, 2007 – Green Party leader Elizabeth May decides to run in Foreign Affairs Minister Peter McKay’s home riding in the next federal election.
May’s denies rumours that she made a deal with the Liberal Party so they would not run a candidate against her in Central Nova.
May also laments the loss of the former Progressive Conservative party, claiming the current Conservative party is too close to George Bush.