Science for Peace is deeply concerned about the egregious violations of Dr. Hassan Diab’s rights under the Canadian and French justice systems: the suspension of his habeas corpus rights, his right to a fair trial if charges are pressed, and the presumption of innocence until proven guilty. Dr. Diab is a Canadian university professor and a Canadian citizen who is fighting for his freedom. He is sought by the French government for his alleged role in a 1980 Paris bombing of a synagogue. France is seeking Dr. Diab’s extradition to France where he would be in indefinite detention while France continues to investigate the evidence.
France has not even charged Dr. Diab, and the available evidence is highly flawed. Dr. Diab’s fingerprints and palm prints do not match the suspect’s. His physical description does not match and his handwriting does not match. Ontario judge Robert Maranger said that the allegations against him have been found “weak”, “suspect,” and “confusing” and that “the prospects of conviction in the context of a fair trial seems unlikely”.
Under Canadian extradition law, any country can press a case without describing the source or truthfulness of the information or whether torture was involved. France is currently before the European Court of Human Rights for violating the right to a fair trial, and for using secret, anonymous intelligence in terrorist trials. Canadian Justice Rob Nicholson has signed a surrender order even though he has been made aware of two similar cases in which the courts of Gibraltar and Ireland both turned France down after concluding the extraditions were sought for impermissible purposes. France does not extradite its citizens.
In Canada, Dr. Diab was first imprisoned in 2008 for four months, then placed under strict house arrest and is strapped to a GPS monitoring bracelet. Both the Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT) and the Departments of Sociology and Anthropology at Carleton University deplored the dismissal of Dr. Diab from his position at the university.
Justice for Dr. Diab is victim of a politicized judicial process in a milieu of Islamophobia. The flawed evidence is exactly like that used against Alfred Dreyfus in 1894 in an environment of anti-Semitism. Science for Peace calls on the Canadian justice system to nullify the extradition order and the onerous conditions of house arrest, to compensate him for his lost earnings and for the financial burden of his GPS device, and to ensure his reinstatement at Carleton university.