“Hassan Diab: Justice Denied” – Webinar held on Sunday January 28, 2024


Presentation by Hassan Diab


Presentation by Don Pratt


Presentation by Roger Clark

Presentation by Michelle Weinroth

On January 28, 2024, an online (Zoom) webinar was held to mark the 6th anniversary of Dr. Hassan Diab‘s unconditional release from a French prison in January of 2018.

Hassan Diab is a Canadian sociology professor wrongfully accused and declared guilty of a bombing near a Paris synagogue in 1980. Dr. Diab was fully exonerated and returned unconditionally to Canada in January 2018, after two French investigative judges determined that there was no evidence linking him to the bombing. However, due to political pressure, French prosecutor appealed his release, and despite a wealth of evidence exonerating Hassan, he was declared guilty by the Special Court of Assize in Paris in April 2023.

Webinar speakers were:

  • Hassan Diab, a Canadian citizen and sociology professor who lives in Ottawa.
  • Don Pratt, founding member of the Hassan Diab Support Committee.
  • Roger Clark, former Secretary General of the Canadian Section of Amnesty International.
  • Michelle Weinroth, writer and teacher living in Ottawa.

Direct link to full video of presentations: https://youtu.be/En3nJkSx4QU

Join the Webinar, “Hassan Diab: Justice Denied”, on January 28, 2024, 3:00 PM ET

The Hassan Diab Support Committee and Independent Jewish Voices Canada invite you to a webinar featuring Dr. Hassan Diab and members of his support committee.

Webinar (on Zoom): “Hassan Diab: Justice Denied”
Date and Time: Sunday January 28, 2024, 3:00 PM Eastern Time

To register:
https://ijvcanada.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_lkteYr7XTLmKHOtiIj6oTw#/registration
(The webinar is open to the public. After you register, you will receive an email with the Zoom link.)

Join us and learn about the human rights implications of Hassan’s case and how it has impacted Hassan and his family. Presenters will provide a brief overview of the case since it started in 2007, including the April 2023 French trial in absentia and developments since then. Participants will have an opportunity to ask questions and discuss strategies for justice for Hassan in 2024.

Six Years On, Hassan Diab Recounts His Release from French Prison on January 12, 2018

Dr. Hassan Diab was wrongfully extradited from Canada to France in 2014, for alleged involvement in the Rue Copernic bombing in Paris in 1980. He spent more than three years in a French prison before investigative judges determined that there was no evidence linking him to the crime, and ordered his immediate and unconditional release.

While this captured a moment of pure joy, sadly it did not last long. The French prosecutor appealed the release decision for political reasons and Hassan remains under the threat of being extradited once again to France for a crime he did not commit.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau must honour his words on June 20, 2018, when he acknowledged that “this is something that obviously was an extremely difficult situation to go through for himself [Hassan], for his family” and promised to “make sure that it never happens again”.

Music credit: “Compassion” by Edoy / License:
https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/

Canada Must Put an End to This
Miscarriage of Justice!

Canada must refuse any potential second extradition of Dr. Hassan Diab

Six years ago, on 14 January 2018, Hassan Diab returned to Canada. He had spent thirty- eight months in the French maximum security prison of Fleury-Mérogis just outside Paris. For most of that time, Dr. Diab was held in solitary confinement for up to twenty-two hours a day. He was never formally charged nor tried in court.

On Friday, 12 January 2018, Jean-Marc Herbaut and Richard Foltzer, the two senior anti- terrorist investigation judges responsible for Dr. Diab’s case, signed their 72-page ‘Order of Dismissal’ decision (Ordonnance de non-lieu). They had determined that there was no evidence to justify bringing Dr. Diab to trial and ordered his immediate, unconditional release. This concluded thirty-eight years of investigation into the 1980 rue Copernic bombing.

Dr. Diab’s French lawyers, William Bourdon, Apolline Cagnat, and Amélie Lefebvre, stated that “this decision is exceptional […] in French judicial history. It is based on clear evidence that there is no possibility of attributing to Hassan Diab any responsibility in the attack.”

With the active support of Global Affairs Canada (Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland) and Canadian Embassy officials in Paris, Dr. Diab was able to fly back to Ottawa on 14 January 2018. He was welcomed at the airport in the early hours of the morning by his wife and children, together with many of his local supporters.

The sense of relief and the hope that justice was finally being done, were to be short-lived. The French Prosecutor appealed against Dr. Diab’s release. Pressure from victims’ advocacy groups, aligned with ultra-conservative political opinion, and the compulsion to identify the individual(s) responsible for the 1980 explosion, all combined in the scapegoating of Dr. Diab. The French Court of Appeal, after multiple delays, rendered its opinion on 27 January 2021, effectively dismissing the Ordonnance de non-lieu and ordering that Dr. Diab stand trial.

Dr. Diab’s Canadian lawyer, Donald Bayne, carried out a detailed analysis of the Court of Appeal decision: (https://www.justiceforhassandiab.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/DIAB-Memo-France-COA-2021-05-05.pdf). Donald Bayne concludes: “The serious multiple errors of fact, reliance on evidence so unreliable it should be disregarded, misstatement of its own mandated handwriting report, resort to sheer speculation in an effort to explain away “essential elements” of exculpatory fingerprint and consistent alibi evidence, willful ignorance of the actual evidence and imposition on Hassan Diab of an impossible onus to prove absolute innocence “indisputably” demonstrate that the decision of the French Court of Appeal to set aside the Investigation Judges’ Order of Dismissal and order that Hassan Diab be put on trial in France is an unjust decision and one that perpetuates over a decade-long miscarriage of justice.”

Dr. Diab was tried in absentia in April 2023. Although the Investigation Judges (Jean-Marc Herbaut and Richard Foltzer) testified that there was no valid basis for a conviction, the Special Assize Court in Paris sentenced Dr. Diab to life imprisonment and ordered his arrest. “The unjust French conviction was based on secret, unsourced, uncircumstanced and unreliable ‘intelligence’ – inadmissible in our system of justice. Canada should not be party to this injustice.” (Donald Bayne)

Dr. Diab and his family live a stressful life in limbo, not knowing when or if a further unjust process might be commenced against him. Prime Minister Trudeau must honour his words in June 2018, when he acknowledged that “this is something that obviously was an extremely difficult situation to go through for himself, for his family” and promised to “make sure that this never happens again”.

Canada must prevent further miscarriage of justice and refuse any potential second extradition of Dr. Hassan Diab!

Read the full media notice (in English and French):
https://www.justiceforhassandiab.org/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Diab-media-notice-2023-12-12-EN-FR.pdf

15 Years of Injustice: How Much More Must Hassan Diab Endure?

November 13 2023, marks 15 years since Dr. Hassan Diab was arrested by the RCMP at the request of France. Since that day, Hassan and his family have yet to experience lasting justice and true freedom.

After his arrest in Canada in 2008, Hassan was jailed in Ottawa, subjected to an extradition hearing, and extradited to France in November 2014, where he spent over three years in near solitary confinement. He was released from prison and returned to Canada in January 2018 after two French investigative judges, who thoroughly investigated the case, dismissed all the allegations against him. However, due to political pressure, the he was subjected him to a sham trial in absentia in April of this year. The politicised French court declared Hassan guilty and issued a warrant for his arrest. Since then, Dr. Diab and his family have lived in fear that he will be extradited once again for a crime he did not commit.

Read the article: “The 15-Year Ordeal of Hassan Diab”, by Paul Leduc Browne

On this shameful 15th anniversary, we ask supporters to urge the government of Canada to DECLARE THAT HASSAN DIAB WILL NOT BE EXTRADITED A SECOND TIME.

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Send a letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau urging him to give immediate assurances that Canada will not accept nor accede to a second extradition request and reform Canada’s extradition law.

Letter in English: https://iclmg.ca/diab-letter

Lettre en français: https://iclmg.ca/fr/lettre-diab

(It’s okay to send the letter again even if you’ve done so before).

Thank you for your continued support!