[JURIST] Amnesty International [advocacy website] accused the government of Canada of having "abandoned" its citizen in Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive] in an open letter [text] Thursday to Prime Minister Stephen Harper. The letter urged Harper to press the US for the repatriation of Omar Khadr [JURIST news archive], the sole Canadian in custody at the US military prison. Khadr has been detained since he was arrested in 2002 at age 15. He allegedly threw a grenade that killed one US soldier and wounded another while fighting with the Taliban in Afghanistan. Last week, a US military judge dropped all charges against Khadr [JURIST report] before a military commission. Khadr nonetheless remains in custody while the appellate process is debated [JURIST report].
Amnesty said Canada had failed to follow the lead of other Western nations in demanding answers to allegations of humans rights abuses at the prison. The letter was signed by more than a hundred academics and endorsed by 25 current and former Canadian politicians, including former Conservative prime minister Joe Clark and former Liberal Party foreign affairs ministers Bill Graham and Lloyd Axworthy. Current Minister of International Trade David Emerson called the repatriation case for Khadr "premature". CBC News has more.