Anne McLellan | Apr. 14, 2001 | Eugene Harasymiw
Government's d&d policy

10611 - 110 Avenue
Edmonton, Alberta T5H 1H7
Phone/fax: (780) 457-5170

April 14, 2001

Hon. Anne McLellan       fax: (613) 943-0044
Hon. Elinor Caplan         fax: (613) 992-0887
House of Commons
Ottawa, ON
K1A 0A6

Dear Ministers:

Our organization has corresponded with both of you on previous occasions, such that introductions are not necessary.

We have been following your government's denaturalization and deportation policy with incredulity and disappointment. Having carefully examined all eight Federal Court judgments involving denaturalization and deportation cases decided to date, and having interviewed most counsel for the Respondents, we are obligated to speak out in the strongest possible terms, so that there is no mistaking our opposition to this grossly unfair and un-Canadian process.

Your government -- with the ministers of Justice and Citizenship and Immigration at the forefront -- has created an abomination in the form of a series of political show trials. These pseudo-trials feature the very worst our judicial system has been forced to endure, including but not limited to:

  • loss of citizenship and permanent removal from Canada dependent on a balance of probabilities standard of proof
  • reliance on KGB-supplied "evidence"
  • trials based on events allegedly occurring a half century ago, where all witnesses have died and all documentation destroyed by the government
  • use of every conceivable means of entrapment and trickery against would-be Respondents
  • resorting to public scorning of judgments which dared to rule contrary to the Justice Minister's wishes,
  • and on and on.

    These circus-like trials conclude with a Federal Court judge's recommendation which is directed to the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration. Based, then, on Minister Caplan's initiative, the matter is then taken to Cabinet (with Minister Caplan's automatic recommendation to denaturalize and deport) for a "final decision."

    In seven of the eight cases decided so far, the presiding judge has stated categorically that there was no evidence whatsoever produced by Ms. McLellan's prosecutors that the Respondents committed any war crimes, atrocities or reprehensible acts. (In the one other case, the Respondent's death has saved your government from further embarrassment.) It is our understanding that in the last two cases of Oberlander and Odynsky the Federal Court's finding that the Respondents obtained their citizenship by fraudulent means (despite the utter lack of evidence of war criminality) presently remains in Minister Caplan's office.

    In view of the foregoing, the Alberta Ukrainian Self-Reliance League hereby demands that:

    1. Minister Caplan refrain from recommending to Cabinet the denaturalization and removal from Canada of Mr. Oberlander, Mr. Odynsky, or any other Respondent where the Federal Court judge has made a finding (as he did in these two cases) that the Respondents committed no war crimes, atrocities or reprehensible acts.

    2. Should Ms. Caplan ignore the demand contained in point No. 1 above, and should she refer those matters to Cabinet, then Ms. McLellan and Ms. Caplan are to both remove themselves from any participation or consideration of the matter before Cabinet. This demand is based on the age-old sacrosanct legal principle that, since Cabinet has the final word, and since the Departments of Justice and of Citizenship and Immigration under Ms. McLellan's and Ms. Caplan's direction conducted the prosecution of the Respondents, the Ministers are unfit to participate in the final determination of the Respondents' rights.

    In the event the Ministers breach either of the foregoing demands, it is our intention to recommend to the National Executive of the USRL and to other organizations that legal action be commenced against you. Govern yourselves accordingly.

    Yours truly,

    Eugene Harasymiw, LL.B.

    Hon. J. Chretien, fax: (613) 941-6900
    Peter Goldring, MP, fax: (613) 992-6898
    Vic Toews, MP, fax: (613) 995-1049
    Inky Mark, MP, fax: (613) 992-0930
    Deborah Grey, MP, fax: (613) 996-0785
    Michael Zaleschuk, President USRL, fax: (306) 729-2173