Suresh removed to undisclosed location
[TamilNet, Thursday, 15 January 1998, 23:59 GMT]
Mr. Manickavasagam Suresh, a Tamil activist facing deportation from Canada, has been removed from the Don Jail in Toronto where he has been held for over two years, to an undisclosed location, said sources close to his lawyers.
Mr. Suresh was taken from Don Jail between 5.30 p.m and 7.20 p.m yesterday, they said.
When Suresh's lawyer, Ms. Barbara Jackman, contacted the Don Jail authorities, she was told that immigration officers had taken custody of her client.
Attempts to contact Canadian immigration officers were unsuccessful as the offices were closed.
However, later the lawyer representing the Canadian Justice Department informed Ms. Jackman that Suresh had been transferred to another detention facility and that the location could not be disclosed due to 'security reasons'.
Ms. Jackman was assured that he had not been removed from the country. The planned date for his deportation is January 19.
Sources close to Suresh said that more information regarding Suresh's whereabouts may be forthcoming this afternoon at a scheduled hearing in the Federal Court regarding a stay order filed by Ms. Jackman over the planned deportation.
Members of Canada's expatriate Tamil community had staged a vigil outside the Don Jail from 10.00am Saturday till 10.00am Tuesday, the orginally planned date of the deportation.
Mr. Manickavasagam Suresh, 42, fled Sri Lanka in 1990 and was recognised as a Convention Refugee by the Canadian authorities in 1991.
Amnesty International has said that Mr. Suresh Manickavasagam would be "in danger of serious human rights violations, particularly torture", were he to be forcibly deported to Sri Lanka and has called for public appeals against Mr. Suresh's planned deportation from Canada.
09.01.98 Lawyers file stay order request
09.01.98 Canada to deport Suresh
09.01.98 Suresh 'in danger' - Amnesty International