The Electric Pencil

Welcome back, Abdelrazik

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Abousfian Abdlerazik (right) and his lawyer Yavar Hameed wait to board a plane for Canada in Khartoum. From

Abousfian Abdlerazik (right) and his lawyer Yavar Hameed wait to board a plane for Canada in Khartoum. From

Finally. After six long years, Abousfian Abdelrazik is returning to Canada.

A Canadian citizen, Abdelrazik went to Sudan in 2003 to visit his mother; he had no idea what awaited him. He would be arrested twice – and alledgedly tortured – by Sudanese police who accused him of having links to terrorists, supported by information they received from Canadian officials. No charges were brought either time, and he was eventually let go. But Abdelrazik was not able to return home. He had been placed on a UN no-fly list so no commercial airline would take him.

And despite the fact that Canadian Security and Intellignece Services eventually cleared him of any links to terrorists, the Conservative government refused to find a way to bring him home. They could have allowed him passage on government-chartered planes leaving with Canadian officials from Sudan, but they did not grant him access. Instead, he has been living in the Canadian embassy in Khartoum while waiting for a court case in Canada to play out.

It finally did recently, with a federal court judge ordering the Canadian government to bring Abdelrazik home. Officials were mum until the appeal deadline (last Friday), but finally announced they would allow him to return.

And today is the day: people are invited to gather at the corner of Ste-Catherine and St-Hubert tonight at midnight to greet Abdelrazik after his 6-year-long forced exile. According to supporters:

One of the few things that he indicated he would like is to greet some of his supporters upon his
arrival. It’s the least we can do.

You can find out more information about his plight (and double-check that his flight is coming in on time) at

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Written by Tim McSorley

June 27, 2009 at 5:03 pm

One Response

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  1. […] editing together a piece about Abousfian Abdelrazik’s return to Canada. In the meantime, here’s a short clip from that night and a shout out to the ever-awesome […]

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