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Canada Supreme Court to hear arguments on legality of Khadr detention

[JURIST] The Supreme Court of Canada [official website] Thursday ruled [order] that lawyers for Guantanamo detainee Omar Khadr [DOD materials; JURIST news archive] could present evidence before the Court that the US is detaining Khadr in violation of international law. At a hearing scheduled for next week, Khadr's lawyers are also expected to argue that Canadian officials have acted contrary to Canadian law by cooperating with the US and not pushing for Khadr's extradition. Khadr is also seeking the release of key documents [JURIST report] on his detention allegedly held by the Canadian government; the Canadian Justice Department [official website] has appealed an appellate court ruling [text] ordering it to hand over the documents. CBC News has more.

Khadr, now 21, faces life imprisonment after allegedly throwing a grenade that killed one US soldier and wounded another while fighting with the Taliban in Afghanistan in 2002. He was charged [charge sheet, PDF; JURIST report] in April 2007 with murder, attempted murder, conspiracy and providing material support for terrorism, as well as spying. Khadr is one of four [JURIST report] Guantanamo detainees prosecuted under the Military Commissions Act of 2006 [PDF text]. Last week, a US military judge ruled [JURIST report] that some correspondence between US and Canadian government officials regarding Khadr must be turned over to Khadr's defense team. In an affidavit released earlier this week, Khadr said that US interrogators in Afghanistan threatened him with rape, physically abused him, and forced him to swear to false statements [JURIST report].

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