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Thursday, January 22, 2004

Arar, CCR sues Ashcroft, others

Today, CCR will file a constitutional and human rights case in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York challenging the decision by federal officials to send Maher Arar, a Canadian citizen, to Syria for interrogation and alleged torture. The claims in the lawsuit include violations of Mr. Arar's right to due process under the U.S. Constitution, his right to choose a country of removal other than one in which he would be tortured as guaranteed under the Torture Victims Protection Act, and his rights under international law.

Said Michael Ratner, President of CCR's Board of Directors, "Maher Arar's case is not an isolated one. He is but one of many victims of the Administration's acknowledged 'policy' of 'extraordinary rendition.' This case presents the first legal challenge to this policy in an attempt to end the practice of shipping persons suspected of terrorism to other countries for interrogation under torture in order to bypass international and domestic law."

In February 2006, Judge David Trager of the Eastern District of New York will dismiss his case on the grounds that the courts cannot interfere with national security or foreign relations matters. Better commentary and details can be found on Obsidian Wings.


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