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Revoking Canadian citizenship will not stop the commission of terror crimes

One of the “hot” topics in Canadian immigration over the last while has been whether or not dual citizens of Canada should be stripped of their Canadian citizenship should they be convicted of treason, espionage and terrorism.  Last month, Immigration Minister John McCallum tabled the bill that removes changes made to citizenship laws that were made by the Conservative government.

Here’s the problem with the bill created by the previous government: revoking an individual’s Canadian citizenship does not actually stop them from committing these terrible crimes.  In addition, individuals who are accused of these crimes but who do not face trial in the Canadian legal system may actually be wrongfully convicted.

Though I agree that changes should be made to Act, I feel that the revocation of Canadian citizenship should only be used in cases of convictions in Canada as there is no way to ensure that an individual’s rights are protected when they face a trial in another country.

For more on this and some of my other thoughts on the proposed changes, check out my CBC piece here and here.

*This blog was co-written by Leanne Verreault, immigration legal assistant.


About Reis Pagtakhan

Reis Pagtakhan is an immigration law partner with MLT Aikins LLP. His extensive experience includes assisting businesses obtain temporary entry to Canada and permanent residency for their executives, employees and contractors from all over the world. Reis has lectured on and written papers on immigration law for the Law Society of Manitoba, the Manitoba Bar Association, the Human Resources Management Association of Manitoba, the Canadian Corporate Counsel Association, and the Community Legal Education Association of Manitoba. He has presented position papers before the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Immigration Department officials and Manitoba Labour and Immigration. He has written articles on immigration for the CBC, the Winnipeg Free Press, trade, industry and ethnic publications.


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