Mr. Speaker, implicit in any debate on U.S. military deserters is whether or not they are refugees, whether they face persecution.
The Liberals have said that U.S. military deserters, or as they call them, war resisters, should be granted refugee status even though the independent Immigration and Refugee Board has rejected all deserter claims as bogus.
A further question is raised as to why the Liberals are accusing the government of our friend President Barack Obama of persecuting U.S. citizens.
We feel that this bill, if enacted, would pose risks to the safety of Canadian citizens and to the laws governing our military.
Bill C-440 proposes that individuals who meet the criteria could become permanent residents by asking for humanitarian and compassionate consideration. Section (1.1) of the bill also says that military deserters:
--shall be exempted by the Minister from any legal obligation applicable to that foreign national—or his or her immediate family—that would prevent them from being allowed to remain in Canada, [for] that foreign national--
Citizenship and Immigration Canada officials have determined that, as a result of this provision, immigration officers would be powerless to refuse military deserters or a member of their family, even if they would otherwise be inadmissible for war crimes, crimes against humanity, security or--