section 7(3.71)

INTRODUCTION AND BRIEF DESCRIPTION

This section states that those who commit an act or omission against United Nations personnel or associated personnel or against protected property outside of Canada may be charged with an offense under specified sections of the Criminal Code of Canada if certain conditions are met.

SECTION WORDING

7(3.71) Notwithstanding anything in this Act or any other Act, every one who, outside Canada, commits an act or omission against a member of United Nations personnel or associated personnel or against property referred to in section 431.1 that, if committed in Canada, would constitute an offence against, a conspiracy or an attempt to commit an offence against, or being an accessory after the fact or counselling in relation to an offence against, section 235, 236, 266, 267, 268, 269, 269.1, 271, 272, 273, 279, 279.1, 424.1 or 431.1 is deemed to commit that act or omission in Canada if (a) the act or omission is committed on a ship that is registered or licensed, or for which an identification number has been issued, under an Act of Parliament; (b) the act or omission is committed on an aircraft (i) registered in Canada under regulations made under the Aeronautics Act, or (ii) leased without crew and operated by a person who is qualified under regulations made under the Aeronautics Act to be registered as owner of an aircraft in Canada under those regulations; (c) the person who commits the act or omission (i) is a Canadian citizen, or (ii) is not a citizen of any state and ordinarily resides in Canada; (d) the person who commits the act or omission is, after the commission of the act or omission, present in Canada; (e) the act or omission is committed against a Canadian citizen; or (f) the act or omission is committed with intent to compel the Government of Canada or of a province to do or refrain from doing any act.

EXPLANATION

Section 7(3.71) is a provision within the Criminal Code of Canada that extends Canadian jurisdiction to offences committed against United Nations personnel or associated personnel and their property outside of Canada. Specifically, this provision deems that an individual who commits an offence against these individuals or property outside of Canada to have committed the same offence in Canada. This provision only applies if certain conditions are met, including if the offence is committed on a registered ship or licensed aircraft, or if the offender is a Canadian citizen, or not a citizen of any state and ordinarily resides in Canada. An offence must also be committed against a Canadian citizen or with the intent to compel the Government of Canada or a province to do or refrain from doing an act. The purpose of this provision is to protect the interests of the United Nations and their personnel, as well as to maintain Canada's reputation as a responsible international actor committed to the protection of human rights and the rule of law. It provides an additional layer of protection for United Nations personnel and property, and ensures that those who commit crimes against them are held accountable, regardless of where the offence occurs.

COMMENTARY

Section 7(3.71) of the Criminal Code of Canada is a provision that establishes the extraterritorial jurisdiction of Canadian criminal law with regards to offences committed against members of United Nations personnel or associated personnel, or against property referred to in section 431.1, outside of Canada. The section specifies the circumstances in which such offences can be deemed to have been committed in Canada, thereby subjecting the offender to Canadian criminal prosecution. The provision recognizes the importance of protecting the safety and security of UN personnel and property, which are often targeted in conflict zones and other high-risk areas around the world. This is in line with Canada's commitment to international peace and security, as well as its obligations under relevant international instruments, such as the Convention on the Safety of United Nations and Associated Personnel. The provision also reflects Canada's interest in ensuring accountability for such offences, regardless of where they occur. By asserting jurisdiction over these offences, Canada is sending a strong message that it will not tolerate acts of violence or intimidation against UN personnel and property, and that it will seek to prosecute those responsible to the fullest extent of the law. The provision sets out several conditions that must be met in order for an offence committed outside of Canada to be deemed to have been committed in Canada. These conditions include the presence of a Canadian connection, such as the involvement of a Canadian citizen or the commission of the offence on a Canadian-registered ship or aircraft. The provision also includes a compulsion" element, where an offence committed with the intent to compel the Government of Canada or a province to act or refrain from acting can also be deemed to have been committed in Canada. While the provision serves an important purpose in protecting UN personnel and property, some may argue that it could be seen as an example of Canada imposing its criminal jurisdiction beyond its borders. This raises questions about the scope of extraterritorial jurisdiction and the potential for conflicts with the jurisdiction of other countries. However, the provision includes several safeguards to ensure that it is not applied arbitrarily, such as the requirement for a Canadian connection and the need for a specific intent to compel the Canadian government. Overall, section 7(3.71) of the Criminal Code of Canada demonstrates Canada's commitment to upholding international standards of accountability and protecting the safety and security of UN personnel and property. While it may have limitations and raise some concerns about extraterritorial jurisdiction, it is an important tool for deterring and punishing those who seek to undermine international peace and security.

STRATEGY

Section 7(3.71) of the Criminal Code of Canada is aimed at protecting members of United Nations personnel or associated personnel and their property. It allows Canada to prosecute individuals who commit acts or omissions against such personnel or property outside of the country if the act or omission would constitute an offense if done within Canada. The section applies to several offenses, including criminal harassment, abduction, and extortion, among others. When dealing with this section of the Criminal Code of Canada, several strategic considerations must be taken into account. First and foremost, one must consider the diplomatic implications of prosecuting individuals who commit offenses against United Nations personnel or property. Such actions could strain relations between Canada and other member states of the United Nations, potentially leading to various consequences. Another strategic consideration is the implementation of this section in its application. While the section is aimed at protecting United Nations personnel and property, there is a delicate balance between protecting these interests and respecting the rights of individuals who might be prosecuted under this section. Thus, it is vital to ensure that there are adequate safeguards in place to ensure that the section is not misused and that all cases are handled fairly and justly. One strategy that could be employed in dealing with this section is to use it as a deterrence tool. By making it clear that committing offenses against United Nations personnel or property will result in prosecution, individuals might be deterred from engaging in such activities. Furthermore, if there are cases where such offenses have been committed, prosecuting the perpetrators could send a strong signal that such behavior will not be tolerated. Another strategy could be to work with other member states of the United Nations to develop common standards and best practices for dealing with offenses against United Nations personnel and property. This could involve developing joint investigations and prosecutions where necessary, mutual legal assistance, and sharing knowledge and expertise. In conclusion, section 7(3.71) of the Criminal Code of Canada is an essential tool for protecting United Nations personnel and property. However, its implementation must be done with care and consideration for the diplomatic implications and human rights concerns. Developing strategies that balance these considerations while using the section as a deterrence tool and seeking cooperation with other member states could be crucial in ensuring its effectiveness.

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