15 June 2011
CANADA: CPT supports de-listing of
Abousfian Abdelrazik from U.N. Sanctions Committee list
Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) is joining a
delegation of Canadian civil society representatives travelling to the United Nations
on 15 June 2011 to ask for the de-listing from a U.N. sanctions committee of a
Canadian citizen named Abousfian Abdelrazik. Mr. Abdelrazik was put on a UN
Security Council sanctions list in 2006 without charge, seeing the evidence
against him, or right of appeal.
Passed in 1999, the Al-Qaida and Taliban
Sanctions Committee 1267 (named after the resolution creating the committee) is
a “preventative measure” that imposes a travel ban and asset freeze on
individuals thought to be associated with Al-Qaida or the Taliban.
Mr. Abdelrazik cannot travel, open a bank
account, work or receive child assistance benefits. Under Canadian law, employing
Mr. Abdelrazik or offering him any kind of financial or material assistance is
In 2003, Mr. Abdelrazik travelled to his native
Sudan to visit his ailing mother. At the request of the Canadian government,
Sudanese security forces arrested, tortured and interrogated him in the
presence of Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) agents. In 2006, the
Sudanese government cleared him after two periods of imprisonment totalling
Like Abdullah Almalki, Ahmad El Maati,
Muayyed Nureddin and Maher Arar, Abousfian Abdelrazik was detained by a foreign
government at the request of the Canadian government and tortured as part of
the War Against Terror.
In 2007, after the CSIS and the Royal
Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) cleared him, the Canadian government formally
asked for the removal of Mr. Abdelrazik’s name from the 1267 List. The UN
Security Council denied the request without explanation.
Citing the 1267 travel ban, the Canadian
government refused to issue Mr. Abdelrazik a passport until a federal court
ruled that the government was violating his constitutional right to return home
and ordered it to repatriate him immediately. He finally reunited with his
children in June 2009 after a separation of over six years.
Although two years have passed since his
return to Canada, the UN Security Council sanctions (enforced by the Canadian
government) make it impossible for him to resume his life.
The United States may be responsible for
putting Mr. Abdelrazik on the list. The primary allegation against Mr.
Abdelrazik is in a 237-word
“narrative summary” posted on the 1267 Committee website three years after he
was put on the list. It says he is “closely associated” with Abu Zubaydah, a
“lieutenant” of Osama bin Laden.
The U.S. sent Abu Zubaydah to Guantanamo
and waterboarded him eighty-three times. The United States now admits that Abu
Zubaydah was never a member of Al Qaeda.
All fifteen members of the Security Council
must agree before an individual can be taken off the list. Currently, 484
people are on the list. In 2008,
the Security Council acknowledged that it “is far easier for a nation to place
an individual or entity on the list than to take them off.”
CPT reservist James Loney will be
representing CPT on the delegation. Please click on this link for photos of
past support actions.