Nazanin Afshin-Jam was in Charlottetown Wednesday to speak at a Progressive Conservative Association dinner
© Guardian photo by Brian McInnis
Nazanin Afshin-Jam was in P.E.I. Wednesday, July 25.
Defence Minister Peter MacKay's wife has added her voice to those calling for the immediate return to Canada of Omar Khadr.
Nazanin Afshin-Jam told The Guardian Wednesday that the 25-year-old Canadian citizen should be removed from Guantanamo Bay where he has been held for almost 10 years following a deadly firefight in Afghanistan.
Alex Neve, the secretary-general of Amnesty International Canada, has urged Ottawa to bring Khadr home without further delay noting that Khadr has been eligible for transfer back to the country for almost nine months.
Afshin-Jam, a dedicated human rights activist, agrees.
"Omar Khadr was a child when he was involved in combat under the UN (United Nations) definition and so we should abide by the international laws and rules that we expect of other countries as well,'' she said.
"So I'm not saying that he shouldn't be kept in prison but definitely I think it's time to bring him back to Canada. He was a Canadian citizen and he can be tried here or looked after here in terms of how long his sentence is going to be or what is going to be his fate.''
Khadr has been detained in Guantanamo Bay for nearly a decade.
In October 2010, he pleaded guilty to throwing a grenade when he was 15 that killed a U.S. soldier in Afghanistan.
He was sentenced to 40 years in jail but, under a plea deal, he only had to serve eight. After spending one additional year at Guantanamo, he became eligible to serve the remainder of his sentence in Canada last fall.
Canada played no role in the plea deal but indicated it would "favourably consider'' the transfer in a diplomatic note sent to U.S. authorities.