Irag war resister unlawfully arrested by BC RCMP
Date: Tuesday, March 20 2007
Iraq War Resister Unlawfully Arrested in Canada
Arrested at the Request of the US Army
Global Research, March 1, 2007
Lawyers Against the War
Iraq War Resister Kyle Snyder Arrested in Canada , then Released
On Friday, February 23, U.S. war resister Kyle Snyder was arrested in British Columbia for unspecified immigration violations. Police in Nelson, BC barged into Snyder’s home, handcuffed him, and hauled him off to jail. The police had no warrant. Snyder, who was wearing only a robe and boxer shorts at the time, was not allowed to put on clothes or shoes. He was not read his rights or allowed to call his lawyer. Nelson police told him he would be deported to the U.S. , where he is wanted for unauthorized absence from the U.S. Army.
Snyder’s housemates, Ryan and Jenna Johnson, frantically called Members of Parliament who, in turn, called Citizenship and Immigration Canada. Immigration officials then informed Nelson police they had no legal basis for arresting Snyder. Nelson Police released Snyder after holding him incommunicado for six hours. Joci Peri, an Immigration official in Vancouver , later told Snyder he had been arrested at the request of the U.S. Army.
Being AWOL from another country’s military is not an extraditable offense in Canada , nor does it have any bearing on immigrating to Canada , according to Vancouver lawyer Daniel McLeod, who is representing Snyder. “And the U.S. Army is not the boss of the Canadian police,” says Gerry Condon of Project Safe Haven.
War resister advocates on both sides of the border were outraged upon hearing the news of Snyder’s arrest.
“We hope that the Nelson, BC Police will be held accountable for their actions,” said Lee Zaslofsky, who coordinates the War Resister Support Campaign in Toronto . “Kyle was treated in a degrading manner that is completely contrary to Canadian values. Kyle Snyder is a man of courage and decency. He spent months in Iraq under very difficult conditions. It is disgraceful that he should receive such ill treatment in Canada .”