Kevin Skerrett & Yves Engler: Canadians of conscience who pay attention to Haiti continue to be ashamed of what is being done in our name.
Join Women in Black, Haiti Action Fredericton and the Fredericton Peace Coalition in marking the international day of solidarity with Haiti at the regularly scheduled WIB time on Friday, Feb 9 at 12 noon, Fredericton City Hall. All welcome.
“Foreign Minister Massimo D’Alema sent a protest letter to six allied countries Tuesday, accusing them of interfering in Italian affairs with their public appeal for Rome to keep its troops in Afghanistan.”
” Prodi said Italian troops will stay in Afghanistan, and pledged to boost civilian aid and diplomatic action there, a key demand by far leftists who oppose the military mission.”
SITUATION CRITICAL WHILE “PUBLIC SAFETY” MINISTER LOST IN THE TWILIGHT ZONE
“I saw large chocolate sauce.” — Stockwell Day, sounding like a B-movie actor in a 1950s sci-fi dud, Radio interview about the hunger strike, CINW, Montreal, Feb. 1
Links to developments in this email:
1. Reality Check: A Six-Point Guide to Countering the Lies and Deceptions of Stockwell “Chocolate Sauce” Day with respect to the hunger strike, http://www.homesnotbombs.ca/daylies.htm
2. Amnesty International writes to Day, http://www.homesnotbombs.ca/amnestytoday.htm
3. Letter from Chinese Canadian Redress Alliance, http://www.homesnotbombs.ca/chineseredress.htm
4. NDP MP Bill Siksay Questions Stockwell Day in the House of Commons, http://www.homesnotbombs.ca/siksay.htm
5. Rotating Solidarity Fast Gets Underway, http://www.homesnotbombs.ca/supportfast.htm
6. Senator Hugh Segal Calls on Government to Negotiate:
UPDATE ON THE SITUATION AND NEXT STEPS
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 7, 2007
The Secret Trial Security Certificate detainees – held without charge or fair trial for up to six and a half years under threat of deportation to torture – are in their third month of a hunger strike at Canada’s
Guantanamo North. Today is day 75 of the hungerstrike for Mahjoub, and day 64 for Hassan Almrei and Mahmoud Jaballah. The three are demanding minor improvements in prison conditions, including medical care and the appointment of the Correctional Investigator, an independent ombudsperson, to investigate complaints.
Despite a mounting public outcry (see letters referred to above), the government continues to expose the men to the risk of death by denying them daily medical monitoring during the hungerstrike. Rather than intervening urgently to find a solution, Day and Harper prefer to propagate misinformation and spin campaigns (see response to six false claims by Harper and Day at http://www.homesnotbombs.ca/daylies.htm).
VICTORY AT HOUSE COMMITTEE
Thanks in part to the pressure exerted by people across Canada, a resolution was passed Tuesday, February 6 by the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration calling on the federal government to respond to the crisis by appointing the Office of the Correctional Investigator, a federal prison ombudsperson, to assume control over Guantanamo North. All Tories on the committee shamefully voted against the motion.
The same motion will go before the Standing Committee on Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness on Thursday. It is crucial that calls go to those committee members calling on them to support the resolution (See list at bottom of this email: focus, in priority, on Liberals and Bloc before the Tories — the NDP member is on side).
==> ACT NOW – THE SITUATION IS CRITICAL
In the next days we are calling for :
1. PUBLIC ACTIONS
There will be numerous actions February 7 protesting the callous and cruel manner in which Stockwell Day is refusing to negotiate a solution. While on the one hand he says (falsely) he cannot intervene because the matter is before the courts, on the other he has invaded the men’s privacy by looking into a fridge and trying to make it sound like the trampling of their rights is okay because he saw “large chocolate sauce” in that fridge.
Ongoing actions, however, are needed. Actions could take the form of delegations to present letters to officials, pickets, or theatrical media actions (orange jumpsuits and chocolate sauce: chocolate sauce in Guantanamo! or Let Them Eat Chocolate Sauce!) at relevant government offices.
Actions should highlight the following demands:
a) Begin providing regular medical monitoring of these three men IN THE LIVING UNIT, immediately and without conditions.
b) Immediately appoint the federal Correctional Investigator to negotiate a solution to the hungerstrike.
c) After the hungerstrike, act without delay to address the underlying reasons for the hunger strikes: indefinite detention, denial of a fair trial, and deportation to torture.
2. CALLS AND FAXES to “Public Safety” Minister Stockwell Day, demanding:
a) Begin providing regular medical monitoring of these three men IN THE LIVING UNIT immediately and without conditions.
b) Immediately appoint the federal Correctional Investigator to negotiate a solution to the hungerstrike.
c) After the hungerstrike, act without delay to address the underlying reasons for the hunger strikes: indefinite detention, denial of a fair trial and deportation to torture.
* Write or call to:
The Honourable Stockwell Day
Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness
Phone: (613) 995-1702
Fax: 613 952 2240 and Fax: (613) 995.1154
*Send a copy of your letter and reports of your actions by email to the Campaign to Stop Secret Trials in Canada, firstname.lastname@example.org.
3. CALLS TO MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC SAFETY STANDING COMMITTEE, urging them to support the resolution to appoint the federal Correctional Investigator to negotiate a solution to the hungerstrike.
Public Safety Committee Members
Name, Party, Constituency, Phone Number
Gary Breitkreuz C, Yorkton-Melville, Sask., 613-992-4394
Gordon BrownC, Leeds-Grenville, Ontario, 613-992-8756
Pat Davidson, C, Edmonton Centre, 613-957-2649
Dave MacKenzie, C, Oxford, Ontario, 613-995-4432
Rick Norlock, C, Northumberland-Quinte, Ontario, 613-992-8585
Sue Barnes, L, London West, Ontario, 613-996-6674
Raymond Chan, L, Richmond, B.C., 613-995-2021
Roy Cullen, L, Etobicoke North, Ontario, 613-995-4702
Irwin Cotler, L, Mount Royal, P.Q., 613-995-0121
Serge Menard, BQ, Marc-Aurele-Fortin, 613-992-2617
Maria Mourani, BQ, Ahuntsic, 613-992-0983
Joe Comartin, NDP, Windsor-Tecumseh, Ontario, 613-947-3445
Breitkreuz.G@parl.gc.ca ; comartin.J@parl.gc.ca ; Cullen.R@parl.gc.ca ;
Barnes.S@parl.gc.ca ; Brown.G@parl.gc.ca ; Chan.R@parl.gc.ca ;
Cotler.I@parl.gc.ca ; MacKenzie.D@parl.gc.ca ; Menard.S@parl.gc.ca ;
Mourani.M@parl.gc.ca ; Norlock.R@parl.gc.ca; Davidp@parl.gc.ca
Campaign to Stop Secret Trials in Canada, email@example.com, (416) 651-5800
WEDNESDAY, FEB 7: URGENT ACTION LETTER WRITING. 12:10pm at Wilmot United Church. This week’s subject deals with threatened activists in Guatemala and Colombia. For more info, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org *Letter writing is always the 1st Wednesday of the month at Wilmot. The Fredericton Peace Coalition will continue to meet the 2nd, 3rd and 4th Wednesdays of the month at the Underground Cafe at 12 noon. All are encouraged to partiicpate!
Interview with Aviva Chomsky, a professor of history and Latin American Studies at Salem State College in Massachusetts. She is also a founder of the North Shore Colombia Solidarity Committee, which has been working since 2002 with Colombian labor and popular movements, especially those affected by the foreign-owned mining sector.
What is being done to apply international pressure?
We are working internationally on many different fronts. We have people in Australia, England, and Switzerland who have attended the owning companies’ shareholders meetings to bring the issues of the communities into public light there. We have sponsored tours by members of the affected communities in all of these countries, as well as in the U.S. and Canada, where we receive a lot of the coal. In Salem, Massachusetts, where I live, and where our power plant imports coal from Colombia, the city council, the mayor, our state representative, and our congressional representative have all written letters to the mine asking it to recognize Tabaco’s right to relocation. We’ve also met with power plants in Salem, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick. New Brunswick Power has also written to the mine urging it to negotiate with displaced Tabaco residents. Dominion Energy, the owner of our plant, made a somewhat vaguer statement calling for a “just resolution” of the issues.
In Denmark and Holland two major importers have suspended contracts with the U.S.-owned Drummond coal mine in Colombia because of the murders of three union leaders there. This also sends a strong message to other foreign-owned mines in Colombia that their human rights practices are important to their clients.
CBC: The allegations come from University of Ottawa law Prof. Amir Attaran, based on government documents he obtained under the Access to Information Act.
If not in Toronto, send a quick email to Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day at Day.S@parl.gc.ca
An emergency vigil in support of the hunger striking secret trial detainees held at Canada’s Guantanamo Bay takes place Wednesday, February 7 at 5 pm at the downtown Toronto offices of CSIS, the spy agency whose lies have placed the men behind bars. (Location: 277 Front Street West, at John, across from the CBC)
Wednesday will be day 75 of Mohammad Mahjoub’s hunger strike, day 64 for Hassan Almrei and Mahmoud Jaballah.
Daily, Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day says the violations of the men’s rights are perfectly fine because they are held in a facility that has chocolate sauce in the refrigerator. His outrageous disregard for human life, and his justification — the presence of chocolate sauce — is as insipid as it is irrelevant.
We plan to pour chocolate sauce over a copy of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms in front of the Toronto offices of the organization that regularly tramples those rights and freedoms, CSIS. We will also pour chocolate sauce over the Convention Against Torture, also being violated in the cases of Canada’s secret trial detainees.
Please dress warm, bring chocolate sauce and copies of the Charter, and your singing voices.
Campaign to Stop Secret trials in Canada, (416) 651-5800, email@example.com
A rotating fast in support of the hunger strikers has begun in Toronto. People can take one day a week (or more if they like) in a public show of solidarity. If you would like to participate, let us know the day you can fast on liquids only and contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
On Jan. 8, some 600 Guatemalan national police and army troops occupied two Kekchi Maya indigenous communities at El Estor, Izabal department. Their orders were to evict the 308 families that made up the settlements of La Union and La Pista. The following morning, 175 more Kekchi families were forcibly expelled from the nearby communities of La Revolucion and La Paz. A Kekchi community at Lote 8 in the neighboring department of Alta Verapaz was also evicted.