UN visit aims to get Abdelrazik off terror watchlist
Canadian has been on list since 2006
A delegation representing a Canadian who is trying have his name removed from a United Nations terror watchlist will meet with the group's representatives in New York Thursday.
Abousfian Abdelrazik is the only Canadian on the UN's 1267 al-Qaeda and Taliban Sanctions Committee blacklist. He spent six years in forced exile in Sudan, some of which was spent in prison where he said he was tortured.
His name was placed on the UN blacklist in 2006 because of allegations he was a possible al-Qaeda operative. He was allowed to return to Canada in 2009.
The Sudanese government, the RCMP and CSIS have exonerated him of all accusations of terrorism, but he remains on the list.
Abdelrazik said his life has been "frozen completely" because of this, as he is not allowed to travel outside of Canada, nor can he have a job or a bank account.
He said he is hopeful, however, that his name will eventually be removed from the list.
"I see myself [as an] innocent person," he said, adding that he wants to "live my life normally with my kids, like everybody else."
Dolores Chew, who is with the South Asian Women's Centre and is a member of the delegation travelling to the UN, said the goal is clear.
"We want to ask the 1267 regime to take Abousfian Abdelrazik off the list," she said. "That's a very basic demand, it's very clear to us it can be done and we want it to be done."
Chew said she is optimistic that they will succeed.
"With all the community support, the mainstream support from Canada's own intelligence agencies, we feel he needs to be taken off the list. There is absolutely no reason for him to be there," she said.
The delegation is made up of a wide range of support groups, including labour organizations, community groups and faith-based groups.