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Canadians' Culture of Tolerance Is Tested by Cases Against Arabs
[FINAL Edition]
The Washington Post - Washington, D.C.
Author: Brown, DeNeen L
Date: Dec 17, 2003
Start Page: A.34
Section: A SECTION

Jean Chretien, then the prime minister, angrily criticized the United States for deporting Arar, and critics demanded details about Canada's intelligence relationship with the Bush administration. Many Canadians were also angry that U.S. officials appeared unapologetic about how they handled the Arar case. Arar, who denies the accusations, has filed a lawsuit against Jordan and Syria for torture. He also plans to sue the United States for violating his rights.

The Arar case also has cast a shadow over other recent cases against Canadians of Arab descent accused of terrorism. Soon after Arar was freed by Syrian authorities, another Canadian citizen, Abdul Rahman Khadr, 20, said U.S. authorities sent him against his will to Afghanistan after he was freed from the U.S. prison camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, where he had been detained for alleged links to al Qaeda. Khadr said he had told U.S. authorities he wanted to return to Canada upon his release.

Martin Rudner, director of the Canadian Center for Intelligence and Security Studies at Carleton University in Ottawa, said attorneys in each of the cases accuse the Canadian government of failing to protect its citizens. "In the case of Khadr and Almrei, the legal representation uses the Arar case to say there is a huge problem with how the Canadian government is operating," Rudner said. "In the Khadr case, once again the Canadian government seemed unable or unwilling to assist Khadr, and the United States simply plopped him back in Afghanistan and left him to his own devices to find his way back to Canada. I don't think that is the case. But questions were raised about Canada's ability to protect its citizens."

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