Category Archives: torture

Outrage over Canada’s compensation for former Guantanamo child soldier is misguided

More than two years after he was out on bail, Khadr is engaged to be married and attending a private Christian university. Like many juveniles (including child soldiers) who have transitioned successfully into mainstream society, Khadr has shown every sign that his past is behind him.

Khadr remains to date the only child soldier who has been prosecuted for war crimes since World War II. At the time of his trial in front of a sham US military tribunal, Radhika Coomaraswamy, former UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict, asserted that “Child soldiers must be treated primarily as victims and alternative procedures should be in place aimed at rehabilitation or restorative justice”.

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Commentary: “How can Canada pretend that Saudi Arabia is an honourable, peaceful country?”

Read the whole thing:

And Raif Badawi? The more you know about Saudi Arabia, the worse it appears. Once you digest the stifling and humiliating rules governing women, and perhaps even consider them routine, you may begin to wonder how the Saudis treat men. And then you come across Raif Badawi and everything grows darker still.

He’s a young Saudi Arabian writer, the creator of the website Free Saudi Liberals. He was arrested in 2012 for insulting Islam through electronic channels and charged as well with apostasy, the abandonment or breach of faith (though he says he’s still a Muslim). He’s not respectful of the grand institutions of the country. He’s referred, for instance, to Al-Imam Mohammad Ibn Saud Islamic University as “a den for terrorists.”

Even worse, he believes in secular government — “Secularism is the practical solution to lift countries (including ours) out of the Third World and into the First World,” he says. “Look at what happened after the European peoples succeeded in removing the clergy from public life and restricting them to their churches. They promoted enlightenment, creativity and rebellion. States which are based on religion confine their people in the circle of faith and fear.”

Badawi apparently lives his life by words he quotes from Albert Camus: “The only way to deal with an unfree world is to become so absolutely free that your very existence is an act of rebellion.”

He was sentenced to seven years in prison and 600 lashes in 2013, then re-sentenced in 2014 to 1,000 lashes and 10 years in prison plus a fine. The lashes were to be carried out over 20 weeks.

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Detained supporters of Turkish coup are being ‘tortured’ and ‘raped’

Supporters of Turkey’s failed military coup have been tortured and raped in custody, Amnesty International has claimed.

The human rights group said it has ‘credible evidence’ of the abuse in Turkish detention centres, although the claims have been denied by a senior official.


turkish lawyer‘Law is suspended’: Turkish lawyers report abuse of coup detainees

Thousands of people taken into custody since Turkey’s attempted coup are being held in sports facilities and stables, where some have been beaten and mistreated, according to lawyers familiar with the cases.

Lawyers from the Ankara Bar Association’s human rights commission say members have reported the alleged abuses after trying to meet with clients. Other lawyers and human rights organizations have made similar allegations.

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Groups Ask Trudeau For An Inquiry Into Afghan Detainees

An inquiry in 2012 concluded that no specific Canadian personnel was guilty of torture but why let that stop anyone?

A coalition of human rights advocates and current and former parliamentarians and diplomats is calling on the Liberals to launch a public inquiry into the handling of Afghan detainees.

The group released an open letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Wednesday, saying it’s time for him to do what the previous government would not — hold a full and open investigation into the policies and practices around Canada’s transfer of captured Afghans to local authorities during the war in Kandahar.

Allegations those detainees were abused, in violation of international law, first surfaced publicly in 2007.

To what extent the Canadian military and government were aware of and ignored that fact, and what actually happened to the Afghans, was the subject of nearly five years of investigation by the military and Parliament.

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About Half See CIA Interrogation Methods as Justified

Following the Senate Intelligence Committee’s report on CIA interrogation practices in the period following the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, 51% of the public says they think the CIA methods were justified, compared with just 29% who say they were not justified; 20% do not express an opinion.

The new national survey by the Pew Research Center, conducted Dec. 11-14 among 1,001 adults, finds that amid competing claims over the effectiveness of CIA interrogation methods, 56% believe they provided intelligence that helped prevent terrorist attacks, while just half as many (28%) say they did not provide this type of intelligence…

More graphs and details at the link.

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