Our Group’s Letters of Concern Helped Repatriate Omar Khadr of Canada.
The Global Importune letter signing group began sending letters of concern on behalf of Omar Khadr to Canada’s Foreign Minister, Lawrence Cannon on or around September 9, 2010 and various members received a lettered response dated October 7, 2010.
Omar Khadr is a Canadian citizen who was captured, badly wounded, in Afghanistan in July, 2002 at age 15 by American forces. He was held and tortured at Guantanamo Bay detention camp for 10 years.
The national and international outcry led to his repatriation to Canada on September 29, 2012 where he serves the remainder of his sentence. He was incarcerated at maximum-security prison Millhaven Institution near Bath, Kingston, Ontario upon his arrival. He has six years remaining on his eight-year sentence but, under Canadian law, was eligible for parole in 2013.
On May 7, 2015, Khadr was freed on bail with strict conditions, including living with and under supervision of his lawyer Dennis Edney.
What Khadr can do:
- Visit his grandparents in Scarborough, Ont. for up to two weeks. The trip must happen by the end of the year and he must travel with his lawyer Dennis Edney.
- Talk to his grandparents unsupervised in a language other than English. He was previously required to use only English to communicate with his family.
- Get rid of his electronic monitoring bracelet.
- Dispense with the software that was remotely monitoring his computer.
- Stay with friends in Alberta if his bail supervisor approves.
- Attend morning prayers and night classes.
What Khadr can’t do:
- Live where he wants. He must still live with Edney in Edmonton.
- Talk unsupervised in a language other than English with his mother and one of his sisters, who have previously expressed extremist views.
- Be out freely at all hours. He still has a nightly curfew.
- Use his computer privately. He must give his bail supervisor access to the machine and turn over all passwords.
- Travel outside Alberta beyond the trip to his grandparents. He can, however, visit his lawyer’s vacation home in B.C.
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