War Resisters bill defeated

Would have stopped deportations against U.S. soldiers who had come to Canada because they could not participate in an illegal and immoral war, namely the Iraq War.

October 8, 2010 | Web First
Bits and Peaces | MCC Canada Peace Program e-newsletter
Ottawa

A private member's bill, which would have allowed U.S. conscientious objectors to the Iraq War to remain in Canada, was defeated on second reading in the House of Commons on Sept. 29.  In the final tally, 143 voted against the bill and 136 in favour. 

The private member's bill, C-440, was sponsored by Liberal MP Gerard Kennedy.  It was understood that the bill, if eventually passed, would have stopped deportations against U.S. soldiers who had come to Canada because they could not participate in an illegal and immoral war, namely the Iraq War.  The Iraq War is generally considered "illegal" because it was not authorized by the United Nations.
 
Twice in the past -- 2008 and 2009 -- Parliament had passed motions which called on the government to stop deportations against U.S. war resisters. Bill C-440 followed in the spirit of these resolutions.
 
MCC Canada, together with the Canadian Friends Service Committee and the United Church of Canada, issued a statement in support of Bill C-440 in the week leading up to the vote. We are currently considering future options in support of conscientious objectors.
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