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A U.S. soldier who deserted because he opposed the war in Iraq does not qualify as a refugee and would not face excessive punishment for his actions if sent home, Canada's Immigration and Refugee Board ruled on Thursday.
Jeremy Hinzman, 26, was the first of several U.S. deserters to file asylum claims in Canada. He fled from the 82nd Airborne Division two years ago and sought refugee status in Canada.
Hinzman had maintained the U.S.-led war in Iraq was illegal and he feared committing atrocities if he was sent there.
The ruling said Hinzman's reasons for refusing to fight in Iraq were "inherently contradictory" because he was willing to serve but only in a non-combat role.
"Surely an intelligent young man like Mr. Hinzman, who believed the war in Iraq to be illegal, unjust and waged for economic reasons, would be unwilling to participate in any capacity, whether combatant or non-combatant," the refugee board said in its decision.
"The Federal Court ... clearly sets out that one cannot be a selective conscientious objector."
The ruling also noted that Hinzman was also not opposed to war given that he supported U.S. actions in Afghanistan.
Originally posted by jrod
Maybe Iran or North Korea can offer him refugee status. The only thing I have to say in defense of the guy is he may have been mislead when he enlisted, but it his own fault for not looking at the situation before joining.
as posted by ECK
Their policies are wreaking havoc upon our men and women in uniform. During the Vietnam War, a soldier was sent to Vietnam for ONE (usually 12 month) tour. They were NOT required to turn right back around and deploy back. For very good reasons. ONE tour was it - unless you VOLUNTEERED for another tour. No one was EVER forced back.