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Canada urged to release detainee data
Wed, 28 Apr 2010 16:14:58 GMT
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Stephen Harper (pictured) should reach a compromise with the parliament or face early elections.
Canada's parliament has urged the conservative government of Stephen Harper to release classified documents related to the alleged torture of Afghan prisoners.

Speaker of Canada's House of Commons Peter Milliken joined the opposition on Tuesday to order Prime Minister Harper to submit secret documents related to the Afghan detainees.

The parliament members want to investigate the classified data to see whether the Canadian military officials in Afghanistan ignored the risk that Afghan prisoners would be tortured if they were turned over to Afghan authorities.

The government officials say the release of the sensitive date could jeopardize Canada's national security, Canadian troops in Afghanistan and the country's international standing.

"Our government will not knowingly break the laws that were written and passed by Parliament," said Justice Minister Rob Nicholson, according to the Canadian Press.

"Our government will not compromise Canada's national security, nor will it jeopardize the lives of our men and women in uniform. That being said, we welcome the possibility of a compromise while respecting our legal obligations as acknowledged by the speaker," he said

Milliken has given the ruling Conservative Party two weeks to reach a compromise with parliamentarians.

Should the Harper administration fail to reach a compromise with the parliament, it would be forced to call snap elections.

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