Welcome!

PHP Authors: Liz McMillan, Carmen Gonzalez, Hovhannes Avoyan, Lori MacVittie, Trevor Parsons

News Feed Item

Prominent Canadians Release Statement Supporting Iraq War Resister Kimberly Rivera

Call on Jason Kenney to Make Humanitarian Application Decision

TORONTO, ONTARIO -- (Marketwire) -- 09/18/12 -- With less than two days left before Kimberly Rivera and her family, including two Canadian children, must leave Canada or be deported, supporters of the US Iraq War resister are calling on Immigration Minister Jason Kenney to stop delaying and make a decision on the Rivera family's three-year-old application to stay in Canada on humanitarian and compassionate grounds (H&C).

As of Tuesday morning, nearly 19,000 people had signed a petition urging Minister Kenney to grant the Rivera family's H&C application (http://change.org/letkimstay).

During a news conference in Toronto on Tuesday afternoon, a group of prominent Canadians released a statement calling on Minister Kenney to "do the right thing and allow Kimberly Rivera and her family to stay in Canada":

     We the undersigned support conscientious objector Kimberly Rivera and  
     her family who are threatened with imminent deportation from Canada on 
     September 20. Kim deployed to Iraq in 2006 and sought asylum in Canada 
     in 2007. She faces a court martial and up to 5 years in military prison
     for refusing to participate any longer in the Iraq war-a war which had 
     no legal sanction. Kim would be separated from her four young children,
     two of whom were born in Canada. A felony conviction would mean a      
     lifetime of difficulty finding employment. We call on the Minister of  
     Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Jason Kenney to do the   
     right thing and allow Kimberly Rivera and her family to stay in Canada.
                                                                            
     Andy Barrie, broadcaster and Vietnam War resister                      
     Dan Bar-El, award-winning children's author                            
     Maude Barlow, author and activist                                      
     Maev Beaty, actor                                                      
     Shirley Douglas, O.C., actor                                           
     Dennis Foon, award-winning writer                                      
     Richard Greenblatt, playwright/actor                                   
     Ron Hawkins, musician                                                  
     Naomi Klein, author                                                    
     Ron Kovic, author, Born on the Fourth of July                          
     Avi Lewis, filmmaker                                                   
     Peter Showler, Director, the Refugee Forum, University of Ottawa;      
     former chair of the Immigration and Refugee Board                      
     Jack Todd, journalist and Vietnam War resister                         
     Alexandre Trudeau, filmmaker                                           

"Canadians' support for conscientious objectors to the Iraq War, and for the Rivera family specifically, has been overwhelming," said Michelle Robidoux, spokesperson for the War Resisters Support Campaign. "If it was up to the Canadian people, there is no doubt that the Rivera family would be allowed to stay in this country. We are appealing today to Jason Kenney to stop a great injustice from being done, by approving Kimberly Rivera's application to stay in Canada on humanitarian and compassionate grounds."

"Like Kim Rivera, I am a war resister who developed an issue of conscience after witnessing events in Iraq and sought protection in Canada," said Chuck Wiley, a 17-year veteran of the US military. "Kim's actions were based in conscience, and her own understanding of the Nuremberg Principles, the Geneva Conventions, and the balance of international law. She took these principles seriously, and hoped and expected that Canada still did the same as it has for generations."

"I arrived in Canada as a Vietnam War resister, and I have been welcomed and embraced by Canadians," said Bill King, Artistic Director of the Beaches International Jazz Festival in Toronto. "Kim Rivera made the same difficult decision I did. Minister Kenney and Prime Minister Harper, please show us that strong leaders are compassionate and allow her to stay."

On Friday, September 14, the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) issued a decision saying the removal of the Rivera family would not be deferred because the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration would not be making a decision in the Riveras' application for humanitarian and compassionate consideration any time soon.

Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) guidelines say that decisions on H&C grounds applications should take an average of 36 months. Given the special attention that CIC has put on the cases of US war resister, as indicated by Operational Bulletin 202 (http://www.resisters.ca/2010.09.29-Embassy_WithdrawUSWarResisterBulletin.pdf), the fact that no decision has been made 3 years after Kimberly Rivera's H&C application was submitted suggests that the Minister is dragging this case out.

In 2010, the Federal Court of Appeal found that evidence of conscientious objection is an important matter which must be considered in a humanitarian and compassionate grounds application.

Instead of deciding H&C grounds applications per the court's decision, Minister Kenney has interfered in the process by issuing a prejudicial operational directive that "misstates the law and seeks to intrude on the independence of" decision-makers by requiring immigration officers to "seek guidance" from headquarters regarding the files of Iraq War resisters, and he is now trying to deport the Rivera family without a H&C grounds application decision.

Yesterday, the Rivera family's lawyer was in Federal Court arguing for a stay of deportation and a judicial review of Kim Rivera's August 30, 2012 Pre-Removal Risk Assessment (PRRA) decision.

In August of 2009 the Federal Court quashed Kim Rivera's December 2008 PRRA, finding that the decision failed to properly assess the risk of differential punishment faced by absentee soldiers, like Kim, who are outspoken critics of the Iraq War. Despite the three years that it took Citizenship and Immigration Canada officials to reconsider the December 2008 decision, as ordered by the Federal Court in August 2009, the PRRA officer has made a similar error to that which led the court to quash the first decision: failing to properly assess the risk of differential punishment based on public conscientious objection to the Iraq War.

Also on Monday, The Globe and Mail published an opinion-editorial by Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu in which the Nobel Peace Laureate called on the Government of Canada to stop its efforts to deport conscientious objectors to the invasion and occupation of Iraq (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/commentary/dont-deport-war-resister-kimberly-rivera/article4544856/).

Today, Rodney Watson - a decorated US soldier who served in Iraq, was stop-lossed and came to Canada in 2006 - is marking his third anniversary of accepting sanctuary in Vancouver's First United Church (http://www.thestar.com/opinion/article/742512--why-a-resister-chose-canada-over-the-war-in-iraq).

Amnesty International Canada promoted an "urgent action," on Tuesday, asking Canadians to call Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney to prevent Kim Rivera from becoming a prisoner of conscience (http://www.amnesty.ca/iwriteforjustice/take_action.php?actionid=919).

Contacts:
War Resisters Support Campaign
Michelle Robidoux
Spokesperon
416-856-5008

War Resisters Support Campaign
Ken Maricniec
Communications Volunteer
416-803-6066
[email protected]

http://resisters.ca
http://twitter.com/warresisters
http://facebook.com/warresisters

More Stories By Marketwired .

Copyright © 2009 Marketwired. All rights reserved. All the news releases provided by Marketwired are copyrighted. Any forms of copying other than an individual user's personal reference without express written permission is prohibited. Further distribution of these materials is strictly forbidden, including but not limited to, posting, emailing, faxing, archiving in a public database, redistributing via a computer network or in a printed form.

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
This month @nodexl announced that ServerlessSUMMIT & DevOpsSUMMIT own the world's top three most influential Kubernetes domains which are more influential than LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, Medium, Infoworld and Microsoft combined. NodeXL is a template for Microsoft® Excel® (2007, 2010, 2013 and 2016) on Windows (XP, Vista, 7, 8, 10) that lets you enter a network edge list into a workbook, click a button, see a network graph, and get a detailed summary report, all in the familiar environment of...
IT professionals are also embracing the reality of Serverless architectures, which are critical to developing and operating real-time applications and services. Serverless is particularly important as enterprises of all sizes develop and deploy Internet of Things (IoT) initiatives. Serverless and Kubernetes are great examples of continuous, rapid pace of change in enterprise IT. They also raise a number of critical issues and questions about employee training, development processes, and opera...
At CloudEXPO Silicon Valley, June 24-26, 2019, Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with expanded DevOpsSUMMIT and FinTechEXPO programs within the DXWorldEXPO agenda. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive over the long term. A total of 88% of Fortune 500 companies from a generation ago are now out of business. Only 12% still survive. Similar percentages are found throug...
AI and machine learning disruption for Enterprises started happening in the areas such as IT operations management (ITOPs) and Cloud management and SaaS apps. In 2019 CIOs will see disruptive solutions for Cloud & Devops, AI/ML driven IT Ops and Cloud Ops. Customers want AI-driven multi-cloud operations for monitoring, detection, prevention of disruptions. Disruptions cause revenue loss, unhappy users, impacts brand reputation etc.
At CloudEXPO Silicon Valley, June 24-26, 2019, Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with expanded DevOpsSUMMIT and FinTechEXPO programs within the DXWorldEXPO agenda. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive over the long term. A total of 88% of Fortune 500 companies from a generation ago are now out of business. Only 12% still survive. Similar percentages are found throug...
Atmosera delivers modern cloud services that maximize the advantages of cloud-based infrastructures. Offering private, hybrid, and public cloud solutions, Atmosera works closely with customers to engineer, deploy, and operate cloud architectures with advanced services that deliver strategic business outcomes. Atmosera's expertise simplifies the process of cloud transformation and our 20+ years of experience managing complex IT environments provides our customers with the confidence and trust tha...
The Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) is a non-profit organization that provides business support services to companies expanding to Japan. With the support of JETRO's dedicated staff, clients can incorporate their business; receive visa, immigration, and HR support; find dedicated office space; identify local government subsidies; get tailored market studies; and more.
At CloudEXPO Silicon Valley, June 24-26, 2019, Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with expanded DevOpsSUMMIT and FinTechEXPO programs within the DXWorldEXPO agenda. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive over the long term. A total of 88% of Fortune 500 companies from a generation ago are now out of business. Only 12% still survive. Similar percentages are found throug...
As you know, enterprise IT conversation over the past year have often centered upon the open-source Kubernetes container orchestration system. In fact, Kubernetes has emerged as the key technology -- and even primary platform -- of cloud migrations for a wide variety of organizations. Kubernetes is critical to forward-looking enterprises that continue to push their IT infrastructures toward maximum functionality, scalability, and flexibility. As they do so, IT professionals are also embr...
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at D...