Inquiries on CPAC - The Air India Inquiry – November 6, 2006 (Part 1 of 2)
Commission of Inquiry into the Investigation of the Bombing of Air India Flight 182
Witness : Diane Beauchesne
Commission Lead Counsel Mark J. Freiman explains a lack of scheduled evidence due the Government of Canada’s refusal to allow the public release of documents relating to national security. He describes the laborious and time-consuming process of obtaining documents from various government agencies. Mr. Freiman, speaking on behalf of the Crown and echoing the opinions of counsel for the victim’s families, recommends that the Commission defer consideration of the substantive issues in the Commission’s terms of reference until the process of documentary review and production has been more substantially completed. Barney Brucker, Counsel for the Attorney General of Canada, speaks in favour of Mr. Freiman’s recommendation. Commissioner John C. Major agrees to adjourn the hearing of substantive evidence until February 2007. Mr. Freiman then makes an opening statement. Mr. Brucker makes an opening statement outlining the government’s perspective on the inquiry. Soma Ray-Ellis, Counsel for Air India, gives an opening statement suggesting that the families of the victims of the bombing have been the victims of systemic discrimination on the part of the Canadian government and various government agencies. Adam Goodman, Counsel for B’nai Brith Canada, gives an opening statement calling on the Commission to investigate the role of systemic racism in the government’s response to the tragedy. Aaron Blumenfeld, Counsel for the Canadian Coalition Against Terror, gives an opening statement criticizing the Canadian government’s lack of support of victims of various terrorist acts. Diane Beauchesne testifies on video about the death of her father in the bombing.