Quebec NDP candidate Romeo Saganash calls niqab ‘the oppressor’s clothing’ despite party’s support of it

Quebec NDP candidate Romeo Saganash said he is opposed to women wearing the niqab during citizenship ceremonies.Quebec NDP candidate Romeo Saganash said he is opposed to women wearing the niqab during citizenship ceremonies. (Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press)

The NDP and Liberal parties’ position that Muslim women should be allowed to wear the niqab during citizenship ceremonies might not be universally shared by all their party members, if statements made by several Quebec candidates this week are anything to go by.

Both parties have said Muslim women should be allowed to wear what they want during citizenship ceremonies while the Conservatives and the Bloc Québécois would like to see face coverings banned during the ceremonies.

Niqab Citizenship 20150915Zunera Ishaq, left, a Pakistani woman and devout Sunni Muslim, challenged the Conservative’s niqab ban and won. The government, however, said it will appeal the lower court’s decision to the Supreme Court of Canada. (Justin Tang/Canadian Press)

On Monday, Romeo Saganash, the NDP’s candidate in the northern Quebec riding of Abitibi-James-Bay-Nunavik-Eeyou, said he personally believed the niqab to be “the oppressor’s clothing.”

Saganash, who is also a member of the Cree First Nation, said at debate earlier this week that when French settlers arrived in Quebec, they had to adapt some of their customs to the culture of the First Nations living there, and Muslim women should similarly adapt.

“When the first French people arrived, they had to adapt, and even adopted, some of the indigenous people’s customs … That’s what we have to do on this issue,” he said.

At the same debate, his Liberal opponent, Pierre Dufour, also expressed his opposition to the niqab.

Meanwhile, NDP candidate in Joliette Danielle Landreville tweeted on Tuesday that she was against the niqab. She later deleted the tweets, but a cached version of her website still showed them.

ALBERTA: Edmonton Police Service ready to offer job to USA Somali


The Edmonton (Alberta) Police Service in Canada has reached out to Isse, a29-year-old Somali-American from Columbus who said she dropped out of the Columbus police academy this year because she was prohibited from wearing her head scarf, or hijab.

Muslim woman receives other offers after quitting police academy
Head scarves for police OK elsewhere


Ismahan Isse
By Mark Ferenchik & Encarnacion Pyle
The Columbus Dispatch • Wednesday May 6, 2015 9:46 AM
Comments: 15 4754 66 5262
If the Columbus Police Division doesn’t change its policy banning head scarves for female Muslim officers, Ismahan Isse might have a couple of options outside Ohio.

The Edmonton (Alberta) Police Service in Canada has reached out to Isse, a29-year-old Somali-American from Columbus who said she dropped out of the Columbus police academy this year because she was prohibited from wearing her head scarf, or hijab.

The Dispatch wrote about Isse last week, and Staff Sgt. Mark Farnell, an Edmonton police recruiter, read about her dilemma online. He said Edmonton police designed a uniform for Muslim women that includes the head scarf.

“She really wanted to be a police officer,” Farnell said. “Why not touch base (and) see if she is interested in coming to Canada and take a look? She’s a great potential applicant to us.”

If interested, Isse would first have to become a permanent resident of Canada, a status she could be granted because of the job,Farnell said.

Edmonton has a growing Somali community and wants its police force to better reflect the city’s diversity, Farnell said. It currently has no Somali police officers.

Isse said she spoke to Farnell on Friday.“I’m actually considering it strongly,” she said of his offer.

She said she also was contacted by a representative of the Somali-American Police Association in Minneapolis. The Minneapolis-St. Paul area has the largest Somali population in the country. Columbus is No. 2.

But Isse, who has an associate degree in criminal justice and works as a temporary office worker for alogistics company, said she would prefer to stay in Columbus.

Isse said she did not wear her hijab during her four months at the academy, but wore it during preceding background interviews. She said the detective interviewing her told her she could not wear it during training.

Vlad Tepes blog: Interview with organizer of ‘Draw anything you want’ day, cancelled by Heritage Canada

Interview with organizer of ‘Draw anything you want’ day, cancelled by Heritage Canada

Posted on May 21, 2015 by Eeyore

Physicist, child of Soviet dissident from satellite state of the former Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia, and Canadian blogger for  freedom, Alexandra Belair, granted an interview to describe exactly what happened when the event she had advertised for Parliament Hill on May 20th 2015 was first cancelled by Heritage Canada, and then after some publicity came out about the event cancelation, Heritage Canada claimed they had never granted her a permit in the first place.

This is an interesting few minutes for a number of reasons.

Muslim Brotherhood gripping sections of Canada’s diverse Muslim community, says U.S. security expert

Beware of the Muslim Brotherhood, expert warns

Published on: May 16, 2015
Last Updated: May 16, 2015 6:36 AM EDT

Ihsaan Gardee, Executive Director of the Canadian Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-CAN) stresses his group has no ties with the Muslim Brotherhood.

Sean Kilpatrick / THE CANADIAN PRESS

Authorities should be concerned about the unseen hand of the Muslim Brotherhood gripping sections of Canada’s diverse Muslim community, says a U.S. security expert.

The movement has planted its revivalist interpretation of Islam, political ideology and activism among some Muslims here and sees itself as a minder and broker between them and the rest of society, Lorenzo Vidino, who specializes in Islamism and political violence, told the Senate’s national security committee recently.

“They basically aim to be the gatekeepers to Muslim communities, that whenever politicians, governments or the media try to get the Muslim voice, if there were such a thing, they would go through them, sort of the self‑appointed leaders of Muslim communities,” he said.

Vidino is director of the program on extremism at George Washington University and author of The New Muslim Brotherhood in the West (Columbia University Press, 2010). He sees no direct links to terrorism among the group’s western supporters. In fact, some work to prevent violent radicalization, he said.

“It would be an analytical mistake to lump them, as some do, with al-Qaida or ISIL. These are not organizations that plan attacks in the West, and actually in many cases they do condemn them.”

The problem is more indirect, Vidino said. “Generally speaking, the movement has not abandoned violence as a tool to advance its agenda.” Tactically, it doesn’t pursue violence, “but it’s not heartfelt,” he said.

“They have this narrative where they lump together foreign policy issues with issues like cartoons and so on as part of a big narrative that proves this point that the West hates Muslims and Islam. It’s that mainstreaming of this narrative which is very much the staircase to violent radicalization and the brotherhood does mainstream that. It provides somewhat of a fertile environment.

“That kind of narrative in the mind a 16- or 18-year-old is extremely dangerous, because violence is justified when Muslims are under attack. If it’s OK in Gaza and Afghanistan, why is it not OK in the West, where you’re also telling me that Islam is under attack?”


The brotherhood is a banned terrorist organization in some Middle East and other countries, notably Egypt, where the movement was born. But it has different profile in the West.

To start, there is no group calling itself the “Muslim Brotherhood” in North America. Instead, a few hundred sophisticated, politically savvy and well-funded supporters in Canada have over the past 50 years created vocal and visible organizations that represent a very small part of the Muslim community. They exert a disproportional influence over mosques, schools and spaces where Muslims come together, said Vidino.

While they don’t take orders from any Arab capital, they “are part of an informal network where you have strong links based on personal and financial connections, and at the end of the day what matters the most: ideology. They all embrace a certain world view.”

Groups sometimes go to great lengths to sever or hide such ties, Vidino told the committee. He said they include the Muslim Association of Canada and what used to be called CAIR-CAN, now the National Council of Canadian Muslims.

Another group he identified is The International Relief Fund for the Afflicted and Needy – Canada, IRFAN. Its charitable status was revoked after the government alleged the organization sent almost $15 million to groups affiliated with the Palestinian terror outfit Hamas between 2005 and 2009. IRFAN has since been listed as a banned terrorist organization in Canada.

Ihsaan Gardee, executive director of the NCCM, said Vidino is misinformed.

“The NCCM is an independent, non-partisan and non-profit grassroots Canadian civil liberties and advocacy organization with a public track record spanning 15 years,” said Gardee. “The NCCM is not a religious group and does not and has never had any affiliations, links, ideological or of any other kind, with the Muslim Brotherhood or any other overseas group.”

The Muslim Association of Canada did not respond to a request for comment. But its website traces its roots to the teachings of Egyptian Hassan al-Banna, who founded the brotherhood in 1928 to revive and integrate traditional Islamic teaching and practices, such as sharia law, with modern society.

Mohammad Shafia and his gang terrorize inmates to attend Friday prayers

Senate committee hears about Shafia, serving life sentence for 2009 murders of 1st wife, 3 daughters

CBC News Posted: May 05, 2015 11:22 AM ET Last Updated: May 05, 2015 12:42 PM ET

Mohammad Shafia, his wife, Tooba Yahya and their son, Hamed, were convicted in 2012 of the murders of the couple's three daughters and Shafia's first wife. A national security committee was told Tuesday that Mohammad Shafia intimidated inmates into attending prayers.Mohammad Shafia, his wife, Tooba Yahya and their son, Hamed, were convicted in 2012 of the murders of the couple’s three daughters and Shafia’s first wife. A national security committee was told Tuesday that Mohammad Shafia intimidated inmates into attending prayers.
The Montreal man serving a life sentence for killing his wife and three teenage daughters intimidated other prisoners to the point that one asked to be put in isolation, a Senate committee has heard. Psychologist Robert Groves, who worked in Kingston Penitentiary, testified Monday before the national security and defence committee hearing on security threats facing Canada. He said he met with one particular non-Muslim inmate who went to great lengths to avoid Shafia.

“It turned out that he felt so intimidated by Shafia and some of his lieutenants, that he chose to give up his relative freedom of movement on the range in the general population for a much more restricted life on a social isolation range,” Groves said. “He could no longer come to see me. I had to go to his cell on the isolation range. He advised me that confinement was worth it to avoid the hassle of dealing with ‘the Muslims’” After his first-degree murder conviction in 2012, Shafia took on a religious leadership role at the Kingston Penitentiary — the onetime maximum-security prison — organizing Friday prayers when the sole Imam permitted to minister to inmates in Canada was not available, according to Groves.

TORONTO: Peer Mohammad Khairi, who almost decapitated wife, loses appeal

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By: Diana Mehta The Canadian Press, Published on Wed Apr 22 2015

Ontario’s highest court upheld the second-degree murder conviction of an Afghan immigrant who nearly decapitated his wife, calling the woman’s death a “horrific” killing in a decision released Wednesday.

Peer Mohammad Khairi, a father of six, had argued that the judge who presided over his trial made several errors, and asked the appeal court for a new trial.

If a fresh trial couldn’t be ordered, Khairi had asked that his period of parole ineligibility — currently set at 15 years after he was sentenced to life in prison — be lowered to 10 or 11 years.

He was turned down by Ontario’s Court of Appeal on both fronts.

“The conviction appeal is dismissed. While we grant leave to appeal the sentence, the sentence appeal is dismissed,” the court’s decision said.

Khairi had admitted to killing his wife in March 2008, it was the circumstances of the death that had been in dispute at his trial, the court noted.

“He contended that he lacked the intent for murder due to mental health issues. Alternatively, he claimed that he stabbed his wife in the heat of passion, caused by her allegedly provocative words and conduct,” the appeal court wrote.

A jury deliberated for three days in 2012 before finding Khairi guilty of second-degree murder.

In his appeal, Khairi argued that the trial judge erred by not declaring a mistrial after what was allegedly an “improper” opening statement from Crown prosecutors, whose effect was allegedly to prevent him from receiving a fair trial. He also claimed the prosecution’s closing address was inflammatory.

The appeal court agreed that the Crown’s opening statement was improper, but found that the trial judge adequately instructed the jury that the Crown’s remarks exceeded the scope of a proper opening statement.


Khairi, who was born in Afghanistan, immigrated to Canada with his wife and children in 2003 after having spent the previous 15 years in India.

The family settled in Toronto but due to the couple’s limited education and inability to speak English, neither of them could find work, court documents have noted.

In 2006, the family had financial troubles and the relationship between Khairi and his wife became strained, the documents said.