Nazi death squad member and Ontario resident Helmut Oberlander
Oberlander and his legal team have long stalled his deportation with endless legal challenges and delays. Last December, Oberlander’s appeal effort was rejected by the Supreme Court of Canada. Now, the Immigration and Refugee Board has ruled against him as well.
After decades of entertaining his excuses, justice must finally be served. The government must settle this issue once and for all.
Nearly two years ago to the date, Prime Minister Trudeau made history by formally apologizing to Holocaust survivors for Canada's rejection of Jewish refugees on the MS St. Louis in 1939. He said: “Today, I rose in the House of Commons to issue a long overdue apology to the Jewish refugees Canada turned away. By issuing this apology, it is my sincere hope that we can shine a light on this painful chapter of our history and ensure that its lessons are never forgotten.”
However, by failing to deport a Nazi whose SS death squad unit, Einsatzkommando 10a, murdered more than 90,000 innocent men, women and children, Trudeau unfortunately raises questions about what exactly has been learned, and how much history has been forgotten.
If the government’s promises of justice and a brighter future were serious, then this is the last chance to prove it regarding Oberlander.
Efforts have been under way for over two decades to deport Oberlander because he lied about his past and gained entry to Canada illegally. B’nai Brith and its Senior Legal Counsel David Matas have been at the forefront of this battle from the start.
“Oberlander has already received every conceivable degree of due process possible, and then some. And he has lost every step of the way,” said Michael Mostyn, Chief Executive Officer of B’nai Brith Canada. “There is no longer any excuse for delaying his immediate deportation from this country.
“Canada cannot continue to allow a mockery to be made of its processes. Oberlander has had his day in court, and he lost. To not remove him now would be a punch in the gut to every Holocaust survivor in this country – and would render meaningless the Prime Minister's promises of justice.”
“Oberlander has had more than enough opportunities to defend himself before Canada’s courts. He has lost his final appeal and should be deported immediately," Matas said. “No more delays. No more appeals. Canadians demand justice and further delays make a mockery of that justice.”
Mostyn added: “There should be zero tolerance for Nazis, in Canada or anywhere else in the world.”