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Old October 6th, 2006, 03:19 PM  
Whisper
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Name: Kodie
Join Date: June 30, 2004
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Default Canada to protest U.S. actions in Arar case


Canada will officially protest the U.S. treatment of Maher Arar, Prime Minister Stephen Harper said Friday.

He told U.S. President George W. Bush about the move in a phone call, the Prime Minister's Office said.

White House spokeswoman Dana Perino was non-commital about the protest, saying Bush "noted his appreciation for Harper calling him directly on this."


Justice Dennis O'Connor's recent report into Arar's abuse recommended the government formally complain about how the U.S. dealt with Arar, and how U.S. officials dealt with their Canadian counterparts.
However, O'Connor conceded that the objection would be more symbolic than anything else.

The American authorities who handled Arar’s case treated him in a most regrettable fashion, O'Connor wrote. They sent Arar to Syria, where he was tortured, while stopping off in the U.S. on his way back to Canada in 2002.

U.S. officials were not candid with Canadian officials about their intentions or the process that led to Arar's removal. The U.S. officials were candid neither with the RCMP officers involved in the joint investigation of Arar, nor with Canadian consular officials who were seeking to help him.

Government ministers said previously that they had written to U.S. officials about the case.

U.S. officials acted on incorrect information provided by the RCMP.
O'Connor also recommended that Ottawa formally protest to Syria.
Harper and Bush also discussed Afghanistan, Darfur and Canada-U.S. border issues.
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