Another thing that surprised me ... a "here's the door" option:
Day defends deportation of security threats
Tue, June 13, 2006
OTTAWA -- Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day says there's an easy way for foreign-born terror suspects to avoid spending years in jail in Canada -- just agree to go back where they came from.
In a spirited defence of federal deportation policy, Day said yesterday Ottawa would be happy if anyone deemed a security threat would leave Canada voluntarily.
"If they say no and they want to stay, they can start an appeal process that usually takes a few years," Day said outside the Commons.
"We can't allow a person who has been deemed a significant security threat to be free. So they are put in detention while the appeal process runs its course. At any time they can . . . walk out and return to their country of origin."
Critics say voluntary departure isn't a realistic option for people who have often fled to Canada because they feared torture in their homelands due to their political beliefs. Day was unmoved by that argument.
"They may or they may not (face torture)," he said. "There are times people claim refugee status and in fact, on investigation, they're not granted refugee status."
The comments came on the eve of a landmark challenge, due to start today, in which the Supreme Court of Canada is being asked to overturn the so-called security certificates used by the federal government to deport non-citizens accused of terrorist ties.
Five men are currently targeted by such certificates, based on allegations they're linked to the al-Qaida network.