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August 1/2004

Press Release

Arbitrary arrest of a Canadian Citizen in Occupied Lebanon

The CLHRF condemns the arbitrary arrest of Mr. Osman M. Bakhach in occupied Lebanon on July 28/2004 after an interview that he conducted with the Lebanese LBC, TV station, through which he addressed issues related to the Muslim "Party of Liberation".

Mr. Bakhach is a Canadian citizen of Lebanese descent , and according to his family he is medically diagnosed as "disabled" due to numerous physical problems.

Since his illegal arrest he has been held in the Ministry of Defense notorious jail where torture and all kinds of inhuman humiliation conducts are inflicted on the detainees till they confess and sign for what ever the authorities fabricate and forge for them.

Mr. Bakhash's family has been denied all kinds of visitation rights, and at the same time he has not been provided by any legal representation as is stipulated by the Lebanese constitution.

The CLHRF calls on the Canadian government to take immediate action and ensure that this Canadian citizen is not tortured, his rights are not infringed on, provided with appropriate legal representation and allowed the right of family visitation.

The Lebanese - Syrian appointed regime is well known with its horrible and notorious infringements on the rights of those unfortunate individuals arrested or imprisoned. It is worth mentioning that many innocent detainees have died while in detention because of torture, negligence and savage conduct.

The CLHRF calls also on the Human Rights organizations, the Red Cross and United Nations to pressure the Beirut government to honor the full rights of Mr. Bakhach

The CLHRF calls too on the Canadian media to justly and fairly cover this new case of arbitrary arrest, make the Canadian public fully updated and informed, and pressure our government in Ottawa to act with no hesitation or delay.

Stalinist regimes like the one Syria has installed in Lebanon since 1990 should not be allowed by the free world to infringe on the Human Rights of any individual, no matter guilty or innocent. The Beirut regime must be forced to abide by the International laws and Charter of Human Rights.

CLHRF, Media Chairman
Elias Bejjani