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Majority of Canadians disagree with $10.5M payout to Khadr: poll

Former Guantanamo Bay prisoner Omar Khadr, 30, is seen in Mississauga, Ont., on July 6, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Colin Perkel

More than half of Canadians think the Trudeau government was wrong to settle with former child soldier and Guantanamo Bay inmate Omar Khadr, according to a recent poll.

An Angus Reid poll, which was released on Monday, found that 71 per cent of Canadians disagree with the settlement and believe the federal government should have continued to fight Khadr in court.

Only 29 per cent feel Prime Minister Justin Trudeau did the right thing in offering a formal apology and making the $10.5-million payout.

Liberal supporters are also showing their disapproval. Sixty-one per cent of people who say they voted Liberal in the last election say the wrong decision was made concerning Khadr.

Last Friday, the Canadian government apologized to Khadr as part of a settlement of his civil lawsuit for breaches of his rights during his imprisonment by the Americans in Guantanamo.

While 65 per cent of those polled said they reject the view that the government had “no choice” but to offer Khadr an apology and a payout, one-quarter of Canadians said they would support an apology but not a monetary settlement.

The survey polled 1,521 Canadians online from July 7-10 and has a margin of error of +/- 2.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. Read the poll results below, or click here to view it.

Poll on Omar Khadr compensation by CityNewsToronto on Scribd

Meantime, Tabitha Speer, the widow of an American killed in Afghanistan, will file a motion on Thursday, asking the Ontario Superior Court to freeze the payment to Khadr.

Speer was the wife of Sgt. Chris Speer, who was killed by a grenade allegedly thrown by Khadr after a fierce battle in Afghanistan in July 2002. Khadr had confessed, but recanted that he threw a grenade that killed Speer and wounded another American solider, Layne Morris.

Related stories:

Interview with Omar Khadr about his settlement with the federal government

Khadr apology, settlement about violation of Charter rights, Trudeau says

Relatives of slain U.S. soldier want urgent freeze on Omar Khadr’s assets

With files from The Canadian Press

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