Canada court rules US 'not safe' for asylum seekers

The US violates the human rights of asylum seekers by imprisoning them, a Canadian judge rules.

Canada's federal court has ruled that an asylum agreement the country has with the US is invalid because America violates the human rights of refugees.

The Safe Third Country Agreement (STCA), in place since 2004, requires refugee claimants to request protection in the first safe country they reach.

But on Wednesday, a judge declared the deal unconstitutional due to the chance that the US will imprison the migrants.

The ruling marks a major victory for Canadian immigration activists.

Lawyers for refugees who had been turned away at the Canadian border had challenged the agreement, arguing that the US did not qualify as "safe" for asylum seekers.

Nedira Jemal Mustefa, one of the refugees forced to remain in the US, told the court her time in US solitary confinement was "a terrifying, isolating and psychologically traumatic experience," according to the court ruling.

"We're all too familiar with the treatment that the US metes out to asylum seekers," Maureen Silcoff, president of the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers, told Reuters news agency.

The 5,525 mile (8,891 km) US-Canada border is the longest border between two countries in the world.

What is the Safe Third Country Agreement?

 

The Safe Third Country Agreement is a policy implemented to better manage refugee claims and to avoid so-called "asylum shopping" between countries.

But it is also driving asylum seekers to make what the Canadian government calls "irregular" crossings to avoid being turned back at official border points.Since 2017, when President Donald Trump took office promising a crackdown on immigration, some 58,000 people have crossed into Canada from the US in that manner to make subsequent refugee claims.

Canada had been processing their claims until the coronavirus pandemic, when the Canadian government said they would be turned back.

There have been calls in Canada to suspend or renegotiate the agreement with the US.

What did the judge say?

Federal court judge Ann Marie McDonald ruled that the deal was in violation of a section of Canada's Charter of Rights that bans the government from interfering in the right to life, liberty and security.

"It is my conclusion, based upon the evidence, that ineligible STCA claimants are returned to the US by Canadian officials where they are immediately and automatically imprisoned by US authorities," Judge McDonald said in her ruling.

"I have concluded that imprisonment and the attendant consequences are inconsistent with the spirit and objective of the STCA and are a violation of the rights guaranteed by section 7 of the [Charter of Rights and Freedoms]," she continued.

But the judge delayed the ruling for six months to allow Canada's parliament and the US Congress to respond. The ruling can also be appealed.

US immigration authorities not have yet to comment on the ruling. BBC

 
 

Other News

.
The Coast Guard joins hands to protect sea and island environment
The Coast Guard joins hands to protect sea and island environment
POLITICSicon  01/07/2020 

Protecting natural resources, preventing and combating environmental pollution ... is one of the functions and tasks assigned by the Party, State and Army to the Vietnam Coast Guard.

The Vietnam Coast Guard has the right to pursue ships that violate sovereignty
The Vietnam Coast Guard has the right to pursue ships that violate sovereignty
POLITICSicon  26/09/2020 

The Vietnam Coast Guard has the right to chase vessels at sea for inspection and control in the following cases: violation of sovereignty, sovereignty right, national jurisdiction ...

"The Coast Guard accompanies fishermen": The fulcrum for fishermen to cling to the sea
"The Coast Guard accompanies fishermen": The fulcrum for fishermen to cling to the sea
POLITICSicon  11/03/2020 

The model "The Coast Guard accompanies fishermen" has become the fulcrum for Vietnamese fishermen to reach out to sea.

Vietnam Coast Guard exerts efforts to rise up to meet requirements in the new situation
Vietnam Coast Guard exerts efforts to rise up to meet requirements in the new situation
POLITICSicon  04/03/2020 

The Vietnam Coast Guard has built and strengthened its forces, which are always associated with the completion of the legal corridor and well organizing the implementation of functions and tasks to meet the requirements of the new situation.

1st anniversary of the Law on Vietnam Coast Guard
1st anniversary of the Law on Vietnam Coast Guard
POLITICSicon  01/07/2020 

The Law on Vietnam Coast Guard has come into force for one year (July 1, 2019). This is a law of special importance for the Vietnam Coast Guard to improve operational efficiency, to meet requirements and missions in the new situation.

AIPA-41: AIPA exerting efforts to contribute to regional connectivity
AIPA-41: AIPA exerting efforts to contribute to regional connectivity
POLITICSicon  08/09/2020 

The 41st General Assembly of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA-41) opened in Hanoi on September 8 under the theme of “Parliamentary Diplomacy for a Cohesive and Responsive ASEAN Community”.

Vietnam gains outstanding results at 2020 Army Games
Vietnam gains outstanding results at 2020 Army Games
POLITICSicon  07/09/2020 

Teams from the Vietnam People’s Army gained outstanding results and surpassed their set targets at the 2020 Army Games, which wrapped up at Patriot Park in the suburbs of Russia’s Moscow on September 5.

AIPA-41: AIPA-35 adopted many initiatives related to ASEAN community building
AIPA-41: AIPA-35 adopted many initiatives related to ASEAN community building
POLITICSicon  07/09/2020 

The 35th General Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Assembly of ASEAN (AIPA-35) with the theme "Further strengthening parliamentary cooperation in ASEAN Community building" was held in Vientiane (Laos)  from September 14 - 20, 2014.

Azerbaijan ambassador receives Friendship order from Vietnamese President
Azerbaijan ambassador receives Friendship order from Vietnamese President
POLITICSicon  07/09/2020 

Party General Secretary and President Nguyen Phu Trong awarded Azerbaijan Ambassador to Vietnam Anar Imanov with the “Friendship Order” in acknowledgement of the ambassador's efforts in promoting bilateral ties.

Vietnam’s preparation for AIPA 41 wins countries’ trust : AIPA Secretary-General
Vietnam’s preparation for AIPA 41 wins countries’ trust : AIPA Secretary-General
POLITICSicon  06/09/2020 

The Vietnamese National Assembly’s thorough and professional preparation for the 41st General Assembly of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA 41) has left good impression 

American intelligence officer: a special witness to National Day 1945
American intelligence officer: a special witness to National Day 1945
FEATUREicon  05/09/2020 

Archimedes Patti was a special witness as he was invited to a historic event: President Ho Chi Minh's reading of the Declaration of Independence on September 2, 1945.

Positive economic signs in August despite pandemic: PM
Positive economic signs in August despite pandemic: PM
POLITICSicon  05/09/2020 

Vietnam’s economy in August saw positive moves despite the tremendously negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the country’s socio-economic development and people’s daily life, PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc said on Friday.

Vietnam triumphs in Tank Biathlon of 2020 Army Games
Vietnam triumphs in Tank Biathlon of 2020 Army Games
POLITICSicon  05/09/2020 

The tank team of the Vietnam People’s Army triumphed at the final race of tank crews of the second division in the Tank Biathlon event of the ongoing 2020 International Army Games in Russia yesterday.

APEC summit to be held online Dec. 4 due to COVID-19
APEC summit to be held online Dec. 4 due to COVID-19
POLITICSicon  05/09/2020 

The annual summit of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Forum will be held online December 4 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, an Asian diplomatic source said.

53rd ASEAN Foreign Minister’s Meeting to be held online
53rd ASEAN Foreign Minister’s Meeting to be held online
POLITICSicon  06/09/2020 

The 53rd ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting and related meetings will be held from September 9-12 in the form of video conference, said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Vietnamese NA to hold AIPA-41 online from September 8-10
Vietnamese NA to hold AIPA-41 online from September 8-10
POLITICSicon  05/09/2020 

The Vietnamese National Assembly will hold the 41st General Assembly of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA-41) themed “Parliamentary diplomacy for a cohesive and responsive ASEAN Community” 

Comprehensive plan on UPR recommendation implementation introduced
Comprehensive plan on UPR recommendation implementation introduced
POLITICSicon  05/09/2020 

The Foreign Ministry and the UNDP held a seminar yesterday to introduce a comprehensive plan on the implementation of recommendations accepted by Vietnam under the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) mechanism, third cycle.

HCM City needs strong determination to become a regional economic hub: top leader
HCM City needs strong determination to become a regional economic hub: top leader
POLITICSicon  05/09/2020 

Party General Secretary and President Nguyen Phu Trong asked the Party Committee of HCM City to show stronger determination to build the city into a key regional economic and financial hub in draft documents of the city’s Party Congress.

Vietnam calls for global cooperation in COVID-19 control at G20 meeting
Vietnam calls for global cooperation in COVID-19 control at G20 meeting
POLITICSicon  05/09/2020 

Deputy PM and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh affirmed that global and regional solidarity, cooperation and coordination are essential to help the world overcome the COVID-19 crisis while addressing online G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting.

Vietnam progresses to final of Tank Biathlon 2020
Vietnam progresses to final of Tank Biathlon 2020
POLITICSicon  04/09/2020 

The Vietnamese team finished in second during the semi-finals of the Tank Biathlon event at the ongoing International Army Games 2020 in Moscow and will therefore take on Tajikistan, Myanmar, and Laos in the final round on September 5.

 
 
 
Leave your comment on an article

OR QUICK LOGIN