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Secret Trial 5, Sophie Harkat and the Human Impact of Canada's Anti-Terror Laws

Feb/03/2011 - 6:30 pm

No One Is Illegal - Toronto invites you to a film screening and talk

Secret Trial 5, Sophie Harkat and the Human Impact of Canada's Anti-Terror Laws

February 3, 2011
6:30pm - 8:30pm
103, Fitzgerald Building, UofT
150 College Street

The Secret Trial 5 is a new crowdfunded documentary, currently in production, that examines the human impact of Canada’s “war on terror”; specifically the use of security certificates, a tool that allows for indefinite detention, with no charges, and secret evidence. Over the last decade, 5 Muslim men, Hassan Almrei, Adil Charkaoui, Mohamed Harkat, Mahmoud Jaballah and Mohammad Mahjoub have been held under security certificates in Canada. They’ve spent between 2 and 7 years in prison each. None of them has been charged with a crime.

Though Adil Charkaoui and Hasan Almrei's certificates have been quashed, Mohamed Harkat's security certificate was ruled "reasonable" on December 9, 2010. On Jan 21, 2011, Immigration Enforcement served him with a deportation notice that his lawyers have vowed to fight all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada if necessary. The Justice for Harkat Campaign is calling for individuals and organizations to sign the statement at (and below). Sophie Harkat, Mohamed Harkat's wife and and organizer with the Justice for Harkat Campaign will be speaking at the event.

The evening will include a free screening of The Good Son, director Amar Wala’s short film about the Jaballah family, followed by a discussion with the filmmakers about their new documentary. This film will be crowdfunded, meaning anyone, anywhere can become a part of the project by donating to the production, and helping spread awareness.

Supported by:
Ontario Public Interest Research Group - UofT
Council of Canadians
Toronto Action for Social Change
Campaign to Stop Secret trials in Canada!
Immigration Legal Committee (Law Union of Ontario & No One Is Illegal - Toronto)
The Justice for Mohamed Harkat Committee
Students Against Israeli Apartheid (York)
No One Is Illegal - Ottawa
Law Union of Ontario
Toronto New Socialists
Justice for Adil Charkaoui
People's Commission Network

To endorse the event, please email


Statement Against Security Certificates

We, the undersigned, have grave concerns regarding the continued use of sections 9, 76-87 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, which allow for the imprisonment in Canada of refugees and permanent residents under the authority of a “Security Certificate”.

The new version of this measure - which included only cosmetic changes in the form of a very limited appeal provision and of the introduction of "special advocates", whose ability to act on behalf of the detained is extremely limited - still maintains a veil of secrecy over any information that may be used against the detained.

Therefore, we are concerned that those detained under security certificates are:

    • Imprisoned indefinitely on secret evidence, though no charges have been laid against them;
    • Tried in unfair judicial proceedings where information is not disclosed to the detainee or their lawyer;
    • Denied the full right to appeal when the certificate is upheld in a process that uses the lowest standard of proof of any court in Canada;
    • Under threat of deportation even when they face unfair imprisonment, torture or death.

We believe that the existing Security Certificate process is undemocratic; violates the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and violates fundamental human rights, to which the government of Canada has committed itself through the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the UN Convention on Refugees, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the UN Convention on Torture.

Accordingly, we demand that the Security Certificate process be abolished.

For those currently detained under security certificates, we demand:

    • That their certificates be removed, and, if any case against them actually exists, that they be allowed to defend themselves in open, fair and independent trials with full disclosure of the case against them.
    • That they not be deported.