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Petition filed at United Nations Committee Against Torture
Canada is obligated to arrest Bush

Protest against Bush in Vancouver, Canada, 10-20-2011
The UN convention against torture requires member nations to submit for prosecution people within its territory alleged to have committed torture.

Four torture victims of George W. Bush filed a petition with the United Nations' Committee against Torture in Geneva on Wednesday Nov. 14.

The petition charged Canada with a failure to comply with the convention against torture which Canada has ratified and that requires member nations to investigate and submit for prosecution or extradition people on its territory who were alleged to have committed the crime of torture.

The Legal Coordinator of Canadian Centre for International Justice, Matt Eisenbrandt, reports that:

“The UN Committee is charged with monitoring States' compliance with the widely ratified Convention against Torture, a treaty requiring nations to investigate and submit for prosecution -- or extradite to another country for prosecution -- alleged torturers present in their territory. The idea behind this obligation is to create a worldwide net, leaving torturers nowhere to run and bringing us closer to an end to impunity for this heinous crime.

“Wednesday's action comes on the heels of two related developments. Over the summer, the Committee conducted a periodic review of Canada and, fully aware of Bush's 2011 visit, called on the government to "take all necessary measures with a view to ensuring the exercise of the universal jurisdiction over persons responsible for acts of torture, including foreign perpetrators who are temporarily present in Canada."

“Then, just one month ago, Omar Khadr, so long stranded in Guantánamo, finally returned home to Canada. The Supreme Court of Canada has already ruled that the Canadian government violated Khadr's Charter rights by interrogating him in Guantánamo under the unlawful detention program there.

“In his 2010 memoir and elsewhere, Bush has openly acknowledged that he ordered the waterboarding -- the pouring of water over an immobilized prisoner's face to the point where the person believes he or she is drowning -- of detainees in U.S custody. His precise words were, "Damn right." He also approved an interrogation program with techniques that experts, including the International Committee of the Red Cross and several United Nations rapporteurs, have denounced as torture. Yet Bush has not been held accountable and faces no charges in the United States. This, despite the fact that Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and other respected groups have called for the investigation and prosecution of Bush and other high-level officials from his administration.”

The continued international effort to indict, arrest and prosecute Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld for their criminal acts continues to gather steam. Bush and company are worried and they should be.

Bush decided to cancel his trip to Switzerland last year after the media reported that Swiss authorities were unwilling to stop planned criminal proceedings initiated by two of Bush’s torture victims.

It is the combined efforts of all of us -- activists, torture victims, human rights leaders and progressive attorneys – that can make the difference. This is an international grassroots effort that will not stop.

Sincerely,

All of us at Indict Bush Now!

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Updates
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  • Indict Bush Now activists will protest at Brennan confirmation Feb. 7 in D.C.
  • Canada is obligated to arrest Bush
  • A terrible crime was committed
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