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By Courage to Resist and the War Resisters Support Campaign (Canada). March 28, 2009

Iraq War resister Kimberly Rivera, who is currently seeking refuge in Canada with her husband and children, received word late March 25th that the Canadian Federal Court granted her a stay pending a decision on whether or not they will review a decision by immigration officials rejecting her pre-removal risk assessment.

Please contact the leaders of the official opposition and ask them to support U.S. Iraq War resisters.

The decision means that Kimberly, her husband Mario and their three children will not be facing a deportation on March 26th. It is a very important decision that recognizes that US war resisters who speak publicly against the war in Iraq face differential treatment by the US military.

Kimberly Rivera’s last-minute victory in the Federal Court on March 25th, stopping her deportation by the Harper government and Minister Jason Kenney, is a tremendous victory for all U.S. Iraq War resisters in Canada. But Kim and other resisters still face imminent deportation. A political solution is needed to ultimately solve this crisis and secure refuge in Canada for war resisters.

Please contact the Leaders of the Official Opposition and ask them to support U.S. Iraq War resisters during next week’s vote. If the 163 members of the opposition parties can unite again, together we can defeat the 143 Conservatives who promise to vote against Iraq War resisters and deport them to jail in the U.S.

BACKGROUND – THE WILL OF CANADIANS AND PARLIAMENT:

On June 3, 2008, Canada’s Parliament passed an historic motion calling on the government to create a program allowing U.S. Iraq War resisters to apply for permanent residence, and to immediately stop deporting them. This motion was re-affirmed by the House Immigration Committee on February 12, 2009.

Yet Harper’s new Immigration Minister Jason Kenney has been ignoring these democratic decisions and deporting war resisters to punishment; Kenney has already deported Chris Teske and Cliff Cornell, and recently tried to deport the Rivera family. Public opinion polls have found that over 64% of Canadians support letting war resisters stay in Canada.

ACT NOW – THE VOTE IS THIS MONDAY:

1.) Please call Michael Ignatieff, Leader of the Official Opposition (Liberals):

Ottawa phone: (613) 995-9364
Etobicoke (Constituency) phone: (416) 251-5510

Points to raise:
– thank the Liberal Party for supporting Iraq war resisters in the debate in Parliament, March 26th;
– thank Mr. Ignatieff and the Liberal Party for voting in support of the 2008 motion in support of Iraq War resisters, and for Canada’s stance in not joining the war in Iraq;
– ask the Liberals to be sure to attend and to vote again with a united opposition to defeat the Conservatives on U.S. Iraq War resisters on Monday, March 30th

3.) SEND E-MAILS to the leaders of the opposition, and include the immigration critics, Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Minister Jason Kenney and Opposition Party Whips asking them to pass the motion on U.S. Iraq War resisters:

Ignatieff.M@parl.gc.ca, Layton.J@parl.gc.ca, Duceppe.G@parl.gc.ca, BevilM@parl.gc.ca, St-Cyr.T@parl.gc.ca, Chowo@parl.gc.ca, pm@pm.gc.ca, Harper.S@parl.gc.ca, minister@cic.gc.ca, kennej@parl.gc.ca, kennej7@parl.gc.ca, Cuzner.R@parl.gc.ca, guimom1@parl.gc.ca, Godin.Y@parl.gc.ca

If the motion passes again in the current Parliament it will send another strong message to Immigration Minister Kenney and Prime Minister Harper to respect the will of Canadians and stop deporting U.S. Iraq War resisters.

Please act now for the war resisters and their families, as every call and e-mail will make a measurable difference.