UPDATE ON HUNGER STRIKES AT GUANTANAMO NORTH
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,
2. Amnesty International writes to Day,
3. Letter from Chinese Canadian Redress Alliance,
4. NDP MP Bill Siksay Questions Stockwell Day in the House of Commons,
5. Rotating Solidarity Fast Gets Underway,
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