Skip to comments.Nine Israeli 'Art Students' Face Deportatation from Canada
Posted on 09/19/2003 11:11:18 PM PDT by Selmo
NINE ISRAELI NATIONALS --- who CSIS suspects are possible foreign agents -- were arrested by Immigration and Ottawa police tactical officers last Friday, blocks from Parliament Hill.
The nine have all been charged by Immigration for working in Canada illegally. All are in their 20s and were apparently selling art in Ottawa. The arrests follow similar takedowns of Israelis in Toronto and Calgary over the past few weeks.
An Ottawa police source said police were told members of the group were possible agents from Mossad, Israel's spy agency, but given no further information by CSIS.
CSIS declined to comment yesterday.
All nine have since been released and are staying in several rooms at a Lisgar St. apartment-hotel.
Citizenship and Immigration spokesman Rejean Cantlon confirmed that nine Israelis were arrested last Friday for working in Canada without a permit. Immigration hearings were held Wednesday and nine exclusion orders were issued.
Ienav Sofer, Amit Yedudai, Rani Rahuhim Katsov, Roy Laniado, Shulamit Gorelik and Anatoly Belnik received exclusion orders for two years for working without authorization and misrepresentation. Koby Cole, Sharon Moskovitz and Yafit Avram were issued exclusion orders for one year.
All will be deported as soon as paperwork is ready, likely within the next few weeks, Cantlon said.
They were arrested with the help of tactical and patrol officers Friday between 5 p.m. and 6 p.m.
No weapons were found in their rooms.
Yesterday, eight were found walking down Lisgar St., but offered no comment when asked if they were Israeli art students.
This is not the first time students selling art in Ottawa have caused concern with law enforcement. In 2001, Centrepointe residents complained of foreign students selling paintings in their neighourhood that turned out to be fakes.
The story of Israeli art students peddling paintings in foreign countries has been reported in the media and on the Internet in the past.
U.S. reports have alleged that groups of students had been trying to sell art in federal government buildings, prompting concerns about intelligence gathering, but no proof has ever been found linking the art peddlers with espionage.
"I keep seeing these things and looking into them, I really don't know how credible they are," said former CSIS chief of strategic planning David Harris. "Certainly it would be extremely surprising if such an outfit would repeat a (technique) in that sort of way."
Israeli Embassy spokesman Ben Forer said the matter is being treated very seriously.
"These are illegal workers ... we're outraged by this," he said. "We expect Israeli citizens that would like to work in Canada to equip themselves with the appropriate work permits before they come to Canada."
Forer laughed when asked if the arrests had anything to do with terrorism or if the nine are agents of Mossad -- whose operatives have been known in the past to favour using bogus Canadian passports.
"We don't know full details about what the paintings were but it was a completely commercial matter," Forer said.
Canadian Highway to Terror
FrontPageMagazine.com ^ | 9/19/03 | Stephen Brown
Posted on 09/19/2003 12:47 AM PDT by kattracks
Canada's refugee system, long used by terrorists as a means of gaining access to North America, has once again shown why it poses a major security risk to the continent.
The latest Islamist miscreant to take advantage of this criminally lax system that makes Canada look like one of the biggest sucker nations in the world is Abderraouf Jdey, whose name appeared earlier this month in an FBI alert as a possible terrorist threat. Jdey first came to the attention of authorities on a videotape found in the home of Osama bin Laden's security chief in Afghanistan, recording a suicide message and promising to die in battle against the infidels. Originally from Tunisia, Jdey came to Canada in 1991 and filed a refugee claim and received Canadian citizenship in 1995.
Unknown to many people, when terrorist crackpots like Jdey arrive in Canada and say the magic word "refugee", then, like Ali Baba before his cave, the door opens wide to a relatively safe hideout and a room full of riches. Besides monthly welfare payments, the terrorist refugee claimant is instantly entitled to free health and dental care, housing and legal representation, thanks to Canadian taxpayers. But most importantly for a terrorist, once that claim has been made, it is almost impossible to have him removed him from the country.
The best proof of this is Mahmoud Mohammed Issa Mohammed, a former Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine terrorist and convicted murderer. Mohammed attacked an Israeli airliner at the Athens airport in 1968, killing one person, and only served one year in jail, before he was released in an exchange. He lied his way into Canada in 1988 and filed a refugee claim that was rejected. However, the convicted terrorist is still here 15 years later, having filed more than 30 appeals. Mohammed currently runs a candy store in Ontario and is still appealing his case, which has cost the Canadian taxpayer about $3 million dollars so far. His deportation is postponed until he exhausts all legal avenues, which probably means never.
Mohammed is not an isolated case. Having a criminal record for terrorism, or other offenses, is no obstacle to staying in Canada. The National Post, a Canadian national newspaper, ran an article in 2001, in which it identified 17 al-Qaeda operatives, based in Canada, who had been convicted of terrorist offenses in other countries.
However, the most famous Canadian refugee claimant/terrorist was Ahmed Ressam...
(See the link above for the rest)
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