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Irwin Cotler, MP



Statement on Political Prisoners

Posted on June 17, 2015

Hon. Irwin Cotler (Mount Royal, Lib.):

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise on behalf of four heroic political prisoners and their respective cases and causes.

They are Saudi Arabian blogger Raif Badawi; Venezuelan democratic leader Leopoldo Lopez; Iranian freedom of religion advocate Ayatollah Boroujerdi, as well as the persecuted leadership of the Baha’i community; and Mauritanian anti-slavery advocate Biram Dah Abeid.

Each political prisoner is a case study of the criminalization of fundamental rights, the deprivation of liberty, and torture in detention. Each is a looking glass into their respective oppressive regimes and their standing violation of international obligations, including obligations to us here in Canada.

We say to these courageous prisoners of conscience that they are not alone. We stand in solidarity with them. Their cause is our cause and we will not relent until their liberty is secured.