[JURIST] Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon [official profile] said Wednesday that the Harper administration will not seek the repatriation of Guantanamo Bay detainee Omar Khadr [DOD materials; JURIST news archive]. Cannon said that while the government is considering options to remedy the violation of Khadr's constitutional rights, it will not press for his return because he faces charges in the US. Spokesperson for Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Dimitri Soudas, affirmed that this decision does not represent a shift [Canwest report] in the government's policy toward Khadr, who is set to go before a US military commission [JURIST report] in July on numerous charges for allegedly throwing a grenade that killed a US army medic.
This announcement follows last week's ruling [judgment text, JURIST report], which held that the interrogation of Khadr by Canadian officials while in detention violated section 7 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms [text]. Canadian officials questioned Khadr, who was captured at age 15, despite knowing that he was being indefinitely detained and had been subjected to sleep deprivation by US authorities. Still, the court held that forcing the government to press for Khadr's return was not an appropriate remedy, as such an order would overreach the court's authority. The ruling overturned a Federal Court of Appeals decision, which upheld a lower court order [JURIST reports] requiring the federal government to seek Khadr's repatriation.