Amnesty International, leading human rights group, issued an appeal to the Canadian authorities on Wednesday to apprehend former American president George W. Bush when he enters the country next week to participate in an economic summit in British Colombia. Amnesty International stated that Canada should either prosecute or extradite Bush for â€œviolations that took place between the years 2002 and 2009 under a secret CIA-run detention program. ‘
The Politico online daily reported that the organization, often referred to simply as ‘Amnesty,’ prepared a 1000-page memorandum addressed to the authorities in Canada, asking them to make a case against the former American President for human rights violations.
Susan Lee, Amnesty director in the United States, stated that Canada is obliged by its international obligations, including its commitments to the United Nations Convention Against Torture, to apprehend Bush and send him to face justice due to his actions regarded as crimes under international law. These actions included torture of prisoners and the use of ‘enhanced interrogation techniques and . . . cruel, degrading and inhuman treatment.’
â€œBy refraining from taking action,’ Lee stated, ‘Canada would demonstrate contempt for basic human rights guaranteed by all international laws and regulations.’
On its part, Canadian authorities reacted cynically to the appeal. The minister of citizenship and immigration, Jason Kenney, declined to comment on individual cases for Politico, adding that â€œsuch stunts by Amnesty are the reason that pushed several human rights advocates to abandon itâ€..
â€œAmnesty never sought the apprehension of Cuban President Fidel Castro, and other dictators,â€ Kenney added.