Canada official: Torture can be tolerated
UPI | September 15 2005
OTTAWA, Sept. 14 (UPI) -- A Canadian official, during a hearing about a Canadian citizen deported to Syria, said the country will cooperate with other nations that practice torture.
The Globe and Ma il reports Canadian Security Intelligence Service lawyer Barbara McIsaac said that the government will work on anti-terrorism cases with governments that practice torture if it will save lives.
She was speaking at a commission hearing looking into Maher Arar's allegations that he was tortured while imprisoned in Syria.
The 36-year-old Syrian-born Canadian citizen was detained at New York's Kennedy Airport and deported to Syria despite his Canadian passport.
He claims he was tortured during interrogation there, until he lied that he was trained in Afghanistan by al-Qaida.
Canada was pressing for his release at the same time officials were pressing Syria for anti-terrorist intelligence.
McIsaac said the government now knows Arar was innocent and put the blame on U.S. authorities who deported him.