Ottawa’s file on Omar Khadr contains faulty information based on a memo prepared by a senior policy analyst for Public Safety Minister Vic Toews ... Among other things, the government alleges the late terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden was an accomplice of a 15-year-old Khadr, and that the Canadian citizen killed two Afghan militia men.
“Mr. Khadr engaged U.S. military and coalition personnel with small-arms fire, killing two members of the Afghan militia force. He threw and/or fired grenades at nearby coalition forces, resulting in numerous injuries to them.”
The assertions are important given they will help inform decisions Canadian prison and parole authorities make on Khadr. [Khadr's appeal coming up in July]
a Public Safety spokesy now opens the door to not releasing Khadr even if his Guantánamo conviction is overturned in the US :
"Canadian authorities insist they will decide what happens to Omar Khadr if his conviction for killing a U.S. soldier in Afghanistan more than a decade ago is overturned in the United States.
Lawyers for Mr. Khadr, now 26, said Friday they will appeal his guilty plea and conviction on murder and terrorism charges in a U.S. federal court that has already tossed out several similar Guantanamo military tribunal convictions."In January, in what a number of public officials anonymously referred to as "highly unusual extraordinary political interference", the office of Public Safety Minister Vic Toews twice overturned a Canadian Press request for a phone interview with Khadr after it had already been approved by the warden at Millhaven where Khadr is being held, citing "access could pose a security risk".
Because a child soldier who has spent the last 10 years in Guantánamo since the age of 16 is naturally "a security risk" to Canada and must be silenced.
The request had been flagged by the Privy Council Office.
In another example of extraordinary political interference that came to light this week, RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson ordered all senior Mounties to get clearance from Toews and his office before meeting with any MPs or senators via a liaison office that co-ordinates RCMP strategy with the office of Public Safety Minister Vic Toews. (h/t DammitJanet!)
Last year Paulson told Liberal Senator Colin Kenny that he himself could not commit to a meeting until he got the stamp of approval from the Department of Public Safety. The meeting never took place.
Toews parlsec Candice Bergen, formerly Hoeppner, who introduced final reading of the Combating Terrorism Act in the House last week, explained on Friday:
"If parliamentarians need to, or want to, meet with RCMP or other officials, the appropriate place for them to do that is in parliamentary committees."
"It's not appropriate for the government to reach into the police operation. It's a very, very fundamental part of what we must be assured exists so that the police aren't doing the work of the government, they're doing the work of the public."
Liberal Senator Grant Mitchell said he feared the "politicization of the police force."
More on recent Toews RCMP Police State escapades : Montreal Simon and DammitJanet!
Fun fact : G&M Editor's note on Omar Khadr’s freedom in Ottawa’s hands despite U.S. appeal, Safety Minister insists : "An earlier version of this story incorrectly referred to Vic Toews as the Public Security Minister".