Few Security Risks Among Pakistanis To Be Deported From Canada

Few security risks among Pakistanis to be deported from Canada

By Norma Greenaway
Postmedia News
August 24, 2010

TAWA—-Pakistanis deemed security risks comprise a tiny proportion of those whose ouster from Canada has been put on hold until conditions improve in their homeland, according to federal figures.

The Canadian Border Services Agency says failed refugee claimants account for 97 per cent of the 810 Pakistanis whose removal has been suspended since flood waters began swamping huge swaths of Pakistan.

The remaining three per cent were ruled inadmissible under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act on grounds that, among other things, include security, criminal activity, health reasons and working and studying without authorization.

The CBSA, the agency responsible for removing foreigners who are found to be inadmissible, did not provide Postmedia News with a breakdown for the three per cent beyond the failed refugee claimants.

The agency has suspended removals following previous natural disasters, the most recent being the massive January earthquake in Haiti.

Officials say removals will remain suspended in the cases of both Haiti and Pakistan until Canadian authorities determine their respective homelands have recovered enough to support their populations, a judgment that is likely months, if not years, away.

The government also says it will consider on a case-by-case basis requests for extensions of visitor and other visas from Pakistanis.

The federal Conservatives government has announced $33 million in direct assistance to Pakistan, and also pledged to match dollar-for-dollar all individual donations to registered charities between Aug. 2 and Sept. 12. The federal dollars will be put into the Pakistani relief fund.

The floods, which began three weeks ago, have claimed more than 1,600 lives and disrupted the lives of an estimated 20 million people.