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Hassan Diab Case: New exculpatory evidence and Amnesty International Intervention

    June 20, 2017

    Media Advisory

    Strong new evidence uncovered in the past few days that could help in the case of Canadian citizen Hassan Diab, who has been held in pre-trial custody in France for 2½ years without charge or trial, will be the subject of a national press conference tomorrow.

    Mr. Diab, a Lebanese-Canadian dual national, was extradited from Canada to France in November 2014 to face criminal charges in connection with a 1980 bombing outside a synagogue in Paris. Mr Diab has consistently professed his innocence.

    French investigating judges have delivered 6 judicial orders that Mr. Diab be released on bail, all of which have been summarily overturned on appeal. The most recent release order, on April 24, cited evidence that indicated Mr. Diab was in Beirut during the Paris bombing. That order was quashed on appeal May 2.

    Alex Neve, Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada, and Chantal Vallerand, of the Canadian Association of University Teachers, will speak at the press conference, as will Mr. Diab’s Canadian lawyer and his spouse.

    The Hassan Diab Support Committee will present new evidence, uncovered by the French investigating judge, of Mr. Diab’s innocence. The British Columbia Civil Liberties Association and the Canadian Civil Liberties Association will also make statements.

    Amnesty International Canada last week called on the Canadian government to intervene and press French authorities to ensure Mr. Diab is released on bail without delay. The French Section of Amnesty International has raised the organization’s concerns about the case with the French government.

    When: Wednesday, June 21, 1 p.m.

    Where: Charles Lynch Room in Centre Block

    Background

    Ontario Superior Court ordered Mr. Diab’s committal for extradition in 2011, despite expressing significant reservations about the reliability of the evidence. After two failed appeals, he was extradited in November, 2014.

    France’s Court of Appeal has cited apparent flight and “public disorder” risks as justifications for quashing the release orders.

    But Mr. Diab respected bail conditions in Canada before his extradition and in France when he was released on bail for 10 days in May 2016.

    For more information, please contact Amnesty International Canada press officers Sue Montgomery at 613-744-7667 ext. 236 or smontgomery@amnesty.ca or Beth Berton-Hunter, 416-363-9933 ext. 332; bberton-hunter@amnesty.ca