Sunday, May 28, 2006

Nawaf Smadi and His Family's Contribution

Dear Nawaf Smadi and Family:

The Office of the Prime Minister has forwarded to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Honourable Peter G. MacKay, a copy of your email of April 10, 2006, in which you express concerns regarding the detention of Mr. Huseyincan Celil, in Uzbekistan.

I wish to assure you that officials of Foreign Affairs Canada in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, in Moscow, Russia, and in Ottawa, are aware of Mr. Celil's case and have been working tirelessly towards a resolution. Officials are actively continuing their diplomatic efforts and are in regular communication with Mr. Celil's family.

The Consular Affairs Bureau is mandated by the Privacy Act, which prohibits the disclosure of personal information by a government department or agency unless the consent of the individual(s) who are the subject of the information has been obtained. Any personal information cannot be disclosed to unauthorized parties without the explicit consent of the individual(s) concerned.

As you can appreciate, the Canadian government has a legal obligation to safeguard the privacy of Canadian citizens. We would like to stress, however, that the Government of Canada is pursuing this matter very seriously in order to bring an end to Mr. Celil's detention in Uzbekistan.

Thank you for writing and taking the time to express your concerns.

Yours sincerely,

Janice Hayes
Ministerial Correspondence Division


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