CSIS Caveat on Documents Shared with Foreign Services
Document Synopsis: CSIS tells foreign agency that if they deem some form of legal action is warranted against a Canadian citizen present in their country, CSIS trusts that the individual will be treated fairly in accordance with international conventions, due process, and access to Canadian diplomatic personnel if requested. If the foreign agency wants to detain or prosecute a Canadian citizen based on information that originated from CSIS, CSIS requests that the foreign agency consult CSIS first.
In the Arar inquiry final report, Justice O’Connor observed: “There is no guarantee that a recipient of information to which a caveat is attached will honour that caveat. The system is based on trust and caveats are not legally enforceable. However, the ability and willingness of agencies to respect caveats and seek consent before using information will affect the willingness of others to provide information in the future – a significant incentive for agencies to respect caveats” [Commission of Inquiry into the Actions of Canadian Officials in Relation to Maher Arar, Report of the Events relating to Maher Arar: Analysis and Recommendations (Ottawa: Public Works and Government Services in Canada, 2006) 49, in Forcese, NS Law, 482].