Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Canada orders that an alleged al Qaeda collaborator be deported to Algeria

Associated Press:

The Canadian government has ordered that terror suspect Mohamed Harkat be deported to his native Algeria, despite his fears that he could tortured or killed there, a newspaper reported Tuesday.

Harkat's lawyer, Paul Copeland said the Canadian Border Services Agency notified his client of the decision on Friday, a day after a Federal Court panel dismissed the government's appeal against his release this month on bail, the Ottawa Citizen reported.

The 55-page decision ruled that Harkat continued to pose a substantial danger to Canadians as an al Qaeda operative, the report said. The agency said the danger posed by Harkat outweighed the Algerian-born man's right to be protected from abuse in his native country, the report said.

However, Copeland said he would demand a judicial review of the agency's decision, the newspaper reported.

Harkat, 37, is one of five Muslim men facing deportation on "national security certificates" -- controversial anti-terrorist tools issued under federal immigration law.

He cannot be deported until the Supreme Court of Canada rules on whether the security certificates are constitutional.

Under Canada's hotly debated security certificate program, the government can detain and deport immigrants without charge, and without providing them or their lawyers with evidence, if they are deemed a threat to national security.

The Canadian Security Intelligence Service contends Harkat is an Islamic extremist and collaborator with Osama bin Laden's terrorist network.

The spy service, which watched Harkat for five years prior to his December 2002 arrest, also argues he supports Afghani, Pakistani and Chechen extremists.

Canada presses for deportation of terror suspect

Al Qaeda Operating in Canada

Canada hunts for 'al-Qaeda cell'


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