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QUESTION PERIOD — Foreign Affairs

Request for Extradition of Hassan Diab

June 22, 2023

On April 27, I asked you about France’s request for extradition of a Canadian, Hassan Diab, who was sentenced on April 21, 2023 to the maximum punishment by the Special Assize Court of Paris, which issued an international warrant for his arrest. This conviction came after three weeks of debates, eight hours of deliberations and 43 years of painstaking investigations. Mr. Diab was found guilty of carrying out an attack, in 1980, on the Union Libérale Israélite de France synagogue, on Rue Copernic, which left four people dead and many injured.

At the time, you confirmed that your government had received the extradition request and was examining it. You also stated, and I will quote you so that it is very clear, “As soon as the decision is ready for publication, I will share it here in this chamber.”

Two months later, can you keep your promise and share the government’s decision with us?

Hon. Marc Gold (Government Representative in the Senate) [ + ]

Thank you for that question, which gives me an opportunity to set the record straight. I said, in answer to your question, that I had set the record straight, and the record was set straight in the press. In your question, you indicated that we had received an extradition request. However, as I explained to reporters, and as was published, that was not in fact the case. It was my fault. I misspoke.

To the chamber, I apologize.

In fact, France has not sent an extradition request to Canada. Canada has not received an extradition request. There has been no extradition request yet. As such, Canada cannot make a decision.

Thank you for your answer. I’m glad you’re letting the chamber know that you misspoke that day. I also learned of your misspeaking from the press.

Do you often misspeak? When you do misspeak, perhaps it would be best to notify the chamber right away rather than waiting two months to tell the press?

Senator Gold [ + ]

I’ll answer that frankly and with all due respect for the Speaker: No, it doesn’t happen to me often, and every time it does, I own up.

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