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[OPIRG-EVENTS] FW: LEONARD PELTIER'S CASE DEBATED IN PARLIAMENT ON NOVEMBER 19th
LEONARD PELTIER DEFENSE COMMITTEE CANADA (COALITION)
Toronto, Ontario Canada
LEONARD PELTIER'S CASE DEBATED IN CANADA'S HOUSE OF PARLIAMENT ON NOVEMBER
RENEWS THE CALL FOR A PUBLIC INQUIRY COMMISSION INTO MR. PELTIER'S 1976
Greetings to all,
A one-hour parliamentary debate on the Leonard Peltier case
focussing on the 1976 extradition proceedings from Canada will take place
on Tuesday, November 19 in the House of Commons in Ottawa. The debate is in
response to a Private Members' Motion, submitted about two years ago by
Bill Blaikie, NDP Member of Parliament (for Winnipeg-Transcona). The
televised debate on CPAC is scheduled at 5:30 pm and will include
submissions from Blaikie, from John Reynolds of the Alliance and other
opposition members. A Member of Parliament is expected to speak on behalf
of the Justice Minister and the government's position on the case.
The Private Members' Motion, titled M-232, was selected by a
government lottery process about a week ago and calls on the Canadian
government to seek Leonard Peltier's return to Canada in light of false
U.S. government evidence presented to Canada's extradition court. However,
Parliament will not be allowed to vote on the motion. The debate will also
draw attention to the urgent call for a Public Inquiry Commission into Mr.
"How can the Canadian government sit idly by when they know that the
witness, that so much of the extradition request depended on, recanted her
testimony when questioned by Justice Fred Kaufman during the Inquiry into
the extradition process," asked Blaikie.
The federal government has yet to respond to the results of the Canadian
Kaufman Inquiry, an independent legal proceeding co-ordinated by the
Innocence Project of the Osgoode Hall Law School and the LPDC Canada on
October 25, 2000. The Inquiry received the recanted testimony of the key
extradition witness together with submissions from other witnesses. The
results formed the basis of a Canadian clemency request in support of
Peltier to former U.S. President Clinton. A request for an updated position
from the Canadian government was also filed with Prime Minister Chretien
and to former Justice Minister Anne McLellan. Canada's response so far has
been a justice department report in October 1999 after a 5 1/2-year
departmental review. The justice minister acknowledged the use of false
affidavits but relied on the argument that there was other circumstantial
evidence. Amnesty International, members of the judiciary, aboriginal and
human rights organizations in Canada and worldwide have condemned this
position since no evidence has existed to justify Leonard Peltier's
Motion M-232 is as follows:
Mr. Blaikie (Winnipeg-Transcona) - That this House condemn as unacceptable
the extradition of Leonard Peltier to the United States from Canada on the
basis of false information filed with a Canadian court by American
authorities, and that this House call on the government to seek the return
of Mr. Peltier to Canada.
A media conference will take place in Ottawa on Tuesday, November 19 at
9:45 to 10:15 am.
LPDC Canada (Coalition)
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