Saturday, March 10, 2007

US Government Affirms Risk to 9-Year-old Kevin Yourdkhani’s Family if deported to Iran From Texas Jail

Just received this from verbena-19:

Family’s Canadian Supporters Urge Immigration Minister to Immediately grant Temporary Residence Permit to End 5-Week Jail Ordeal

TORONTO, MARCH 9, 2007 — The Canadian lawyer for 9-Year-old Kevin Yourdkhani — a Canadian citizen currently detained over a month in a Texas immigration jail along with his Iranian-born parents — revealed today that the U.S. Government agrees with the assessment of Amnesty International that the family faces a credible risk of persecution or torture if deported to Iran.

“The Canadian government now has TWO separate assessments, both showing that the history of past torture and persecution in Iran told by the Yourdkhani/Alibegi family is credible, and that return to Iran is not a viable option. One comes from the US government, the other from Amnesty International,” says lawyer Andrew Brouwer, who is retained by the family.

However, given the record of US immigration authorities in such cases, and the track record of officials at the Hutto detention facility where Kevin and his family are held with hundreds of other immigrants (including some 200 children), the prospect of release in the imminent future is dim unless there is immediate action from Canada’s Immigration Minister Diane Finley.

“Since March 5, Minister Finley has had on her desk an urgent request to grant a temporary residence permit to the Yourdkhani/Alibegi, and all she needs to do is sign that permit to allow the family out of the miserable conditions they are experiencing in jail and speed their return to Canada, where hopefully they can start piecing their life back together.”

Brouwer points out that the situation in Hutto is poor, and the conditions of detention are the subject of a lawsuit launched this week by the American Civil Liberties Union. 9-year-old Kevin Yourdkhani is suffering from a painful eye infection, eczema and what appears to be either a very bad a cold or flu. He also suffers severe asthma which is complicated by the poor conditions at Hutto.

Meanwhile, the minister’s office has been receiving phone calls and letters from people across Canada urging an immediate resolution of this situation.

For further information, contact Andrew Brouwer at 416-653-2912 or 416-230-2614 or Barbara Hines, the family’s US lawyer, at 1-512-232-1310.

Barristers and Solicitors
596 St. Clair Ave. W, #3
Toronto ON M6C 1A6
tel 416-653-9964 ext. 229
fax 416-653-1036

People are asked to pressure Diane Finley:

Diane Finley
Hill Office
House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0A6

Telephone: (613) 996-4974
Fax: (613) 996-9749
Web Site:*
Preferred Language: English

Constituency Offices
70 Queensway West
Simcoe, Ontario
N3Y 2M6

Telephone: (519) 426-3400
Fax: (519) 426-0003

1 comment:

  1. Thank you, K, for acting on this. Much appreciated.

    in solidarity,