Thursday, March 24, 2005

Jeremy Hinzman update

From Australia's ABC, "Canada rejects US soldier's refugee bid:"

Canada has denied refugee status to a United States soldier who fled his unit rather than fight in Iraq.
Jeremy Hinzman was the first of at least six US soldiers who deserted and fled to Canada claiming to be refugees.
Mr Hinzman has said he believes the war in Iraq is illegal and that he should not be forced to fight for the US.

From CNN's "Canada: No refuge for U.S. soldier:"

Thursday's decision, which was formally announced on a government Web site, could affect at least eight -- and possibly dozens more -- American soldiers seeking refuge in Canada, yet help improve strained relations between Washington and Ottawa.
Canada opposed the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq. The Pentagon has urged the deserters to return to the United States and take up their concerns at their respective military bases.
The ruling, written by Immigration and Refugee Board member Brian Goodman, said Hinzman had not made a convincing argument that he would face persecution or cruel and unusual punishment if sent back to the United States.

From AFP "US war objector gets on bike to fight for freedom in Canada:"

Hinzman, a trim 26, rode up to an anti-war protest in Toronto on a bicycle, and pledged to appeal in federal court, after his plea was turned down by the immigration authorities.
"Canada has a history of being a haven for people of conscience and hopefully when this is all said and done, I hope that legacy can continue," said Hinzman.