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(en) Canada, Montreal, invitation to public assembly (aug 10)

From "dr.woooo" <dr.woooo@nomasters.org>
Date Thu, 7 Aug 2003 08:11:03 +0200 (CEST)

A - I N F O S N E W S S E R V I C E

> From: No One Is Illegal* <nooneisillegal@dojo.tao.ca>
As part of the campaign, the refugees facing deportation and their
supporters are asking for groups from Montreal, Quebec, Canada and beyond,
to endorse the main demands of the stop the deportations campaign. (please see below)
--- Solidarity Assembly for Pakistani Refugees Facing Deportation ----
Sunday August 10 @ 4-6pm Atwater Library (1200 Atwater) Metro Atwater

Over the past few weeks Pakistani refugees facing deportation, along with
members of No One is Illegal Campaign and South Asian Womens Community
Center and other individuals have been meeting to develop a political
campaign and collective action plan to fight against Immigration Canadaís
efforts to deport Pakistani refugees living in Montreal.

In Montreal there are over 400 Pakistani refugees facing deportation in the
coming weeks and months. Since September 11th, they have systematically been
rejected by the IRB judges, a rejection rate of approximately 80%, with the
grounds for rejection being that the situation in Pakistan for these
refugees has improved despite IRBís own contrary human rights reports from
Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.

The Action Committee and its supporters have recently been involved with the
urgent case of Bilquis Fatima and Imran Hussain. On Thursday, July 31, 2003,
the Immigration and Refugee Board announced that it would indefinitely
continue the detention of Bilquis Fatima in critical medical condition, and
her son Imran Hussain, a minor, pending their removal to the United States.
Bilquis Fatima is a wheelchair-bound 63-year-old woman with a serious heart
condition and diabetes, who can not live without dialysis three times a
week. She and her son have been incarcerated in the Laval Immigration
Prevention Centre for over a month. During this period her medical condition
has deteriorated drastically. However, Mrs. Bilqis has received medical
notification that she is in no condition to survive the journeyt. Under
these circumstances, the removal of Mrs. Bilqis and Imran to the US
constitutes an attempt by Canadian immigration to absolve themselves of the
responsibility for her certain death. In order to pressure IRB to release
the family immediately and provide them with regularized status, two rallys
have been held at both CIC and IRB in the past two weeks, with many others
being planned as many others face imminent deportation.

A solidarity assembly is taking place this Sunday August 10th to build a
support network for the Pakistanis presently facing deportation. The
objective of the assembly is to educate the Montreal community about the
present situation of the refugees, and to establish concrete support for the
refugeesí demands. It is essential that we establish a network of support
and communication with the greater Montreal community, to prepare for what
may lie ahead.

This is an extremely urgent situation as approximately 10 refugees have
already been deported back in the past 4-6 weeks with many others facing
imminent deportation. This solidarity assembly will be a place to hear about
the situation facing Palestinian refugees in Montreal and plug into the
developing campaign to ensure that no deportations happen.

As part of the campaign, the refugees facing deportation and their
supporters are asking for groups from Montreal, Quebec, Canada and beyond,
to endorse the main demands of the stop the deportations campaign.

These demands are:

1) The Action Committee demands that the deportation of rejected Pakistani
claimants to either Pakistan or the United States be stopped immediately;
2) all Pakistani refugee claimants be granted full and regularized status in
3) and all rejected cases must be given a second chance to apply again and
have a fair hearing

We strongly encourage groups, organization & individuals to attend Sundayís
meeting as support and solidarity is needed to ensure that no Pakistani
refugees are unjustly deported.

In Solidarity,

Action Committee of Pakistanis, No One is Illegal Montreal.
nooneisillegal@tao.ca/ 514-812-0858

======> Background Information <======

In Montreal, there are over 400 Pakistani refugee claimants facing
deportation in the coming months as their cases are being rejected in
unprecedented numbers by the Immigration and Refugee Board. These refusals
are based on the grounds that the situation in Pakistan from these refugees
has improved, whereas, the facts are contrary to it. These refugees are
fleeing a violent political and sectarian crisis in Pakistan, which has
been well documented by Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch. They
have escaped from the killings, torture, kidnappings, rape and constant

A close review of the rejected cases indicates that some IRB judges are not
aware of their own departments published reports, which clearly agrees with
the aforementioned human rights reports, and as such the decisions of the
IRB judges decisions are indicative of systemic racial profiling. In the
post 9/11 climate, there is also an increase in detention of Pakistanis,
particularly men, with most of them being held in detention upon arrival at
either Dorval airport or at the LaColle border.

Facing evident persecution, it is a deplorable and unacceptable that a
significant number of these refugees are being rejected and deported in the
coming days and months. On the part of the members of the Immigration and
Refugee Board, there is a clear lack of understanding, and inconsistency in
judgment, with regards to what these refugees face- torture, rape, murder-
upon their return.

This situation points to the growing criminalization of asylum seekers
world. Montrealís Pakistani refugees are developing a political campaign
against the efforts of Immigration Canada to deport them. The developing
campaign to fight against the efforts of Immigration Canada to deport
Montrealís Pakistani refugees is also clearly part of the
growing movement world wide, which confronts and challenges the Canadian
State and its racist policies against immigrants, refugees and indigenous

* [Ed. Note: Anti authoritarian initiative]

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