Home » News »

CSC conviction of Canadian citizen Bashir Makhtal

Canadian Somali Congress condemns the unjust conviction of Canadian citizen Bashir Makhtal in Ethiopia and calls on the Canadian government to save Bashir from possible execution

Press Release

July 28, 2009

The Canadian Somali Congress is extremely disappointed by the conviction of Canadian citizen Bashir Makhtal in an Ethiopian court on July 27, 2009. Mr. Makhtal could face the death penalty after the court found him guilty Monday of being a member of a rebel group fighting for autonomy for an ethnically Somali part of Ethiopia. This case has been very troubling to members of the Canadian Somali community from the very beginning due to their suspicion that Bashir’s troubles had more to do with being the grandson of the founder of the rebel group in question rather than on any real evidence of wrongdoing on his part. The abuses Bashir suffered at the hands of the Ethiopian government include the illegal rendition from Kenya to Ethiopia on January 20, 2007, denial of consular access and legal counsel for a period of two years and until recently, being subjected to trial by way of a military tribunal. Important evidence provided by Mr. Makhtal was ignored and he was accused of engaging in military activity in Ethiopia during a period of time when he was physically in Toronto. It is common knowledge that the Ethiopian judicial system is not independent, that torture is routine and that there is no guarantee of due process.

The Canadian Somali Congress is encouraged by Transport Minister John Baird’s interest in and work on this case. We are pleased with Minister Baird’s statement expressing disappointment with the verdict and committing to provide Mr. Makhtal with the full support and assistance of the Canadian government. We urge the Canadian government to continue its intervention in this case because Mr. Makhtal could be facing the death penalty. We also urge the Canadian government to demanding his immediate repatriation. Canada is a generous aid donor to Ethiopia. We should use this leverage to make it clear to the Ethiopians that Canada will not accept the illegal and unjust treatment of a Canadian citizen.


For further information contact:

Communications department
Canadian Somali Congress

Tel: 613-523-2656

Email: canadiansomalicongress@gmail.com
Website: www.canadiansomalicongress.com

Faafin: SomaliTalk.com //

. Afeef: Aragtida maqaallada iyo faallooyinka waa kuwo u gaar ah qorayaasha ku saxiixan. E-mail Link Xiriiriye weeyey

comment closed after 30 days / Jawaabaha waa la xiray ama waa la joojiyay wixii ka badan 30 cisho.