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Archive of September, 2013

By the ST5 Team

Show Your Support at the Supreme Court!

Posted on Wednesday, September 18, 2013.

Moe and Sophie Harkat are headed to the Supreme Court….


Join your fellow supporters at the Supreme Court of Canada to watch Mohamed Harkat’s historic case be heard!

Court Hearing:

Supreme Court of Canada
301 Wellington Street
Ottawa, Ontario
9AM Sharp (plan to arrive no later than 8AM for security and to get a seat)

Hit the Pavement!

Demonstrations will be held on the steps of the Supreme Court of Canada:
Thursday, October 10 at 7:30AM & Friday, October 11 at 10AM.

A Reading of The Trial

The Campaign to Stop Secret Trials in Canada will be staging a reading of Franz Kafka’s The Trial Thursday, October 10 at 7:30PM at St. Paul’s University Theatre, 223 Main St Ottawa. It will feature many prominent Ottawa-area performers and writers. The event is Pay What You Can, suggested donation is $10, no one will be turned away for lack of funds. More information HERE.

Stay Tuned for Updates:

The Secret Trial 5 crew will be in Ottawa to capture these events unfold. If you can’t make it out, don’t worry - we’ll post regularly on Supreme Court news. If you’re interested, make sure to connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

Spread the word!

Please consider making a donation to the Justice for Mohamed Harkat committee. They are welcomed and extremely helpful. Information on how to make a donation can be found on their homepage.

Also please sign the PETITION AGAINST SECURITY CERTIFICATES. Be sure to spread the petition widely!

Noah Bingham

Check Out Our New Digs!

Posted by Noah Bingham on Wednesday, September 11, 2013.

Check out an album of our new office space where we have been busy working away.

52 Media, has generously let us set up shop at their office and have made us feel at home! You may know them from incredible documentaries like Weibo’s War & Air India 182.

Amar Wala

The Arrest of John Greyson and Tarek Loubani

Posted by Amar Wala on Tuesday, September 03, 2013.


It’s been nice to see the outpouring of support for the two Canadians arrested in Egypt recently. One of those Canadians is of course a good friend, mentor, and former professor of just about everybody working on ST5. In fact, if it weren’t for John Greyson, ST5 and my short film The Good Son wouldn’t even exist. So as you can imagine, hearing John and Dr. Loubani had been detained without charge in Egypt had a serious impact on our whole crew, and we continue to be frustrated that they have not been released to date (September 3, 2013).

We have however been happy to see the support their arrest has galvanized here at home, both from everyday people and Canadian authorities. People are outraged, and rightfully so. Imagine for a moment that we flipped the script here. Imagine if two Egyptians were arrested in Canada and detained without charge. Imagine for a second that, like John and Tarek, these individuals were accused of serious crimes - crimes that are completely implausible, and downright laughable to their loved ones.

Now imagine that despite the very serious allegations, no charges are laid against these individuals for days, months, even years. Imagine that in all that time, they’re never told why the government believes these things about them. Imagine that neither they, nor their lawyers are allowed to see the evidence against them. Imagine that a decade goes by, with their families still waiting for answers. Sounds ridiculous, right?

Those of you following the making of The Secret Trial 5 know that I’m being facetious, and that the unthinkable scenario I just described is the all-too real story of Mahmoud Jaballah and Mohammed Zeki Mahjoub. Combined, these two men have spent the last 25+ years living under a security certificate in Canada. This includes about 13 years in prison WITHOUT CHARGE. They are accused of being terrorists, accusations that they deny. And much like John Greyson and Dr. Loubani, when their families ask for answers, they receive little in return. Like John, Mr. Jaballah is a teacher, but unlike John, who was merely traveling through Egypt, Mr. Jaballah was building a life here when he was detained. As was the case with Mr. Mahjoub. This includes working here, making friends here, and having Canadian kids.

It’s easy for us to point the finger at Egypt and denounce its actions. It’s easy to say, “those people over there, they’re the crazy ones, holding our citizens without charge!” It’s much harder to point that finger at ourselves. It’s much harder to hold ourselves accountable for the blatant human rights violations taking place in our name. My point is not that we shouldn’t be outraged at the treatment of our friends being held in Egypt, we should. But as our friend and supporter Chris Wiseman recently wrote, “we cannot continue to fight "terrorism" in the way that we do, without expecting that other governments will also use arbitrary and undemocratic measures against people…”

To be frank, I sincerely doubt that the plight that John and Dr. Loubani face will cause any self-reflection here at home. The Canadian public has made it clear that they don’t care much about these issues. Perhaps we’re kidding ourselves in believing that when The Secret Trial 5 is done, it will spark a conversation Canada desperately needs to have with itself.

But if John has taught us anything, it’s that when art and activism come together in just the right way, the results can truly inspire.

On behalf of the ST5 crew, a deep and sincere thank you to everyone working so hard to ensure the safe release of John Greyson and Dr. Tarek Loubani.

Please visit, share and take action:

Amar Wala – Director, THE SECRET TRIAL 5