Tories boycott Afghan detainee meeting

OTTAWA — A House of Commons committee looking into the Afghan detainee controversy is going ahead with a meeting today despite a boycott by Conservative MPs.

OTTAWA — A House of Commons committee looking into the Afghan detainee controversy is going ahead with a meeting today despite a boycott by Conservative MPs.

Liberal, NDP and Bloc Quebecois MPs on the special committee on Afghanistan decided to hold an informal meeting after they failed to achieve quorum.

They are hearing from retired diplomat Gar Pardy and Paul Champ, lawyer for the B.C. Civil Liberties Association.

Pardy recently organized a letter from more than 100 former ambassadors criticizing the Harper government for attacking the credibility of diplomat Richard Colvin, who says he warned the government in 2006 about torture.

The committee is looking into whether the government knew prior to 2007 that detainees being handed over by Canadian troops to Afghan authorities were being abused.

The government insists it never knew of any abuse before 2007, when it changed the prisoner transfer agreement to allow for monitoring.

Conservative MP Laurie Hawn, parliamentary secretary to the defence minister, sent a letter to the committee saying Christmas is “a time to spend with loved ones” and maintaining that “only a serious emergency” should interfere with the festivities.

“We’re here to make it clear that one person, Stephen Harper, can’t shut down the legal and political process.”

New Democrat MP Paul Dewar said the Tories would rather “slurp eggnog and eat bon bons” than get to the bottom of this issue.

The Tories have used divisive and diversionary tactics to counter the opposition, saying the allegations undermine Canada’s troops in Afghanistan. In fact, the opposition has taken pains to point out that the blame rests on the government, not the military.

Just Posted

Cannabis legalization won’t impact one Red Deer pot dispensary

Nothing changes for Compass Cannabis Clinic in Red Deer despite legalization

Cannabis retail store will open later in October in Red Deer

Two cannabis stores coming to downtown Red Deer

Neighbours drop opposition to Red Deer County communications tower

Communication tower to be located in Balmoral Heights

Legal cannabis comes with many unknowns: Red Deer County councillors

Councillors question how rural municipalities will be able to enforce cannabis regulations

Kitten season puts pressure on Red Deer shelter

More public education needed to control cat population

WATCH: Two weeks away from Canadian Finals Rodeo in Red Deer

In just two weeks, Ponoka’s Shayna Weir will compete with the best… Continue reading

‘Start low, go slow’: Experts walk bud beginners through cannabis 101

With the countdown to cannabis legalization Wednesday ticking towards 4-20, some novice… Continue reading

NHL stays with status quo as Canada pot legalization looms

As Riley Cote took and delivered countless punches over more than a… Continue reading

Paul Stanley: Kiss farewell tour could include ex-members

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — It won’t be all night, but former members… Continue reading

Judge tosses Stormy Daniels’ defamation suit against Trump

WASHINGTON — A federal judge dismissed Stormy Daniels’ defamation lawsuit against President… Continue reading

Canada open to growing trade with China now that USMCA is a done deal: PM

TORONTO — Canada is open to doing more business with China now… Continue reading

Pot shop raids “highly unlikely” on Wednesday: head of police chiefs

VANCOUVER — Police departments across Canada are fully prepared for marijuana legalization… Continue reading

Campers will be able to smoke cannabis at campsites in Canada’s national parks

Parks Canada says visitors should do their research on cannabis before going… Continue reading

U.S. pot firms urge Trump to deny Canadian producers’ ‘competitive advantage’

WASHINGTON — An American cannabis producer is warning President Donald Trump that… Continue reading

Most Read