The Canadian government announced Monday that it would seek an emergency stay on bail granted by a Canadian judge to former Guantanamo detainee and Canadian national Omar Khadr, who has spent almost half his life behind bars.
The application will be heard Tuesday morning, ahead of a scheduled hearing to set Khadr’s release conditions, said Jeremy Laurin, spokesman for Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney.
“Omar Ahmed Khadr pleaded guilty to heinous crimes, including the murder of American Army medic Sergeant Christopher Speer,” Laurin said.
Ottawa has and will continue to “vigorously defend against any attempt to lessen his punishment for these crimes,” he added.
Khadr was 15 years old when he was captured on an Afghan battlefield in 2002 and sent to the U.S. prison in Cuba. During skirmishes he suffered injuries that left him partially blind, The Guardian reported.
Khadr was the youngest detainee at the Caribbean prison.
Last month, Judge June Ross decided that Khadr, now 28 and detained at a prison in the western province of Alberta, should be released while he appeals his conviction for war crimes in the United States. Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s government has been critical of the decision.