Skip to comments.Serbian woman loses appeal (to stay in Canada)
Posted on 06/03/2004 10:33:10 AM PDT by joan
HALIFAX (CP) - A 34-year-old woman from Kosovo who has spent more than a year living in the sanctuary of a Halifax church has been told she cannot remain in Canada.
Sanja Pecelj's lawyer confirmed on a local radio station Thursday that Immigration Canada has denied his client's application to stay in Canada on humanitarian grounds.
The refugee claimant has been living in a small bedroom in the basement of an Anglican church since early last year, unable to leave the building for fear of being deported.
Pecelj had no immediate comment Thursday and friends at the church said she was too upset to talk about the decision.
She arrived in Nova Scotia legally in 2000 to work at the Pearson PeaceKeeping Centre in Nova Scotia's Annapolis Valley.
She has said that unrest and renewed violence in Kosovo would make it unsafe for her to return.
Pecelj was denied refugee status by Ottawa a couple of years ago.
In a recent interview, Pecelj said waiting for an answer from the government had become excruciating.
"I cannot pretend this is not affecting me," the ethnic Serb told a Halifax newspaper earlier this week. "I'm a human being."
There have been various rallies and demonstrations of community support for Pecelj, who worked as a translator, a teacher and a waitress before confining herself to the church.
She has even said she'd been offered a job by a local company if she was allowed to remain in the country.
Halifax MP Alexa McDonough was immediately critical of the decision to turn down Pecelj's appeal.
"How the government of Canada could make this decision when we have the capacity to make a decision on compassionate and humanitarian grounds is truly mind-boggling," said the former NDP leader.
Pecelj's lawyer, Lee Cohen, told the radio station Thursday he planned to continue the fight to keep Pecelj in this country.
He said he would appeal directly to the immigration minister.
Pecelj is one of several high-profile church sanctuary cases that have made headlines in recent months.
Earlier this year, police entered a Quebec City church and seized an Algerian man who had taken refuge in the church from a deportation order.
They don't allow one Kosovo Serb woman, who arrived legally, and has genuine reason to fear returning to Kosovo, to stay while plenty of thuggish Muslim men get to stay. Surely some other country will take her in. Don't you think at least Russia would?
Maybe if she changed her name to Khadr ...
This case debunks the lie of Kosovo being a Liberal success story. Canada has spent over $480M to bomb Serbia's civilian infrastructure and spent millions to support KLA in Kosovo after the war.
The damage in Serbia was approx. $60B + 1500 human lives. Canada is responsible for 1/10
Kosovo gave LIberals an alibi of doing something noble while in reality they were busy to squander hundred of millions through various schemes.
It is easier to kick out a legitimate refugee than admitting wrongdoing.
One more reason why Liberals should be ditched June 28th.
The left and the Islamofacist are one and the same.
Yep, I just knew you had to be a newbie. Don't ask me how I knew.
That's what happens when you and everyone you know have all been dispossessed by The Powers That Be. As a person from a colonial satrapy/protectorate, you lose your citizenship rights globally, as well as locally. There's no one to stand up for you -- not the imperial viceroy, nor anyone in the colonial administration.
But, just as was the case in 1998, the big picture tells you that the fundamental issues here are not about justice, but economics.
Nebojsa Malic on antiwar.com has a good post today... 550 million barrels of oil in Bosnia... mostly in teh Serb part.
and they've known about them for years.
They cannot even manage to keep peace while there. Because they are still too stupid to see the obvious right in front of them. Islamic crazies want to dominate the world.
As I read this, my first thought was, if she was Albanian there would be no problem.
He said, "WE bombed the wrong side."
Pretty snappy reply if you ask me. :-}
Oh no, all the Albanians are getting away with it.
Same here. I found it pretty witty. Took me that split second between "what the..." and "brwhaha".