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Amidst the legal battles that surround Canadian former Guantanamo Bay prisoner has decided to purchase a strip mall in Edmonton for $3 million.
According to Sheila Gunn-Reid, documents related to the purchase show “the 9,150 sq. ft. commercial property was purchased with a cash lump sum on Nov. 29, 2018, by a numbered company, 2156536 Alberta Ltd., which lists Khadr as a director. The five-unit strip mall has an assessed value of just over $1.5 million, the documents show, and was last sold 2009 for $850,000.” Khadr has refused to make a statement regarding the matter, via his lawyer Nate Whitling.
The story was originally published by media outlet The Rebel Media with comments obtained by The National Post.
The Edmonton mall is in the residential neighbourhood of Kensington, with surrounding tenants including a tire shop, a garden centre, a travel agency, and a daycare.
Omar’s riches come from the controversial and widely covered settlement he received nearly two years ago, when the Supreme Court ruled that Canadian officials “violated his rights by failing to protect him from abuses suffered at Guantanamo Bay.”
“The Canadian government has put this court in a position where it has to enforce a judgment and a ruling that was derived from torture, the same torture that the Canadian government has apologized for,” he said in brief comments to reporters outside court at the time.
Khadr, who was convicted of five war crimes for acts he committed at the age of 15 that resulted in the death of an allied soldier, was released on bail in Canada in 2015, pending a “lengthy appeal of his conviction in the U.S.”
Khadr recently sought to loosen the conditions surrounding his bail, seeking out “a Canadian passport, the ability to travel outside of Alberta without notifying a bail supervisor, and to remove the requirement that conversations be monitored between Khadr and his sister Zaynab, who has spoken out in favour of al-Qaida and who was once investigated for supporting the terror group.”
Tenants of the small Kensington mall who were willing to give a public statement and speak to the National Post were “aware the building and changed hands, but had never met their new landlord.”
The Skyview travel agency’s owner Alaeddin Alhussainy, an Iraqi refugee, said he’d never met the new owner of the building, as he had dealt exclusively with the realtor. “I’m shaking,” he said half-joking after learning it was Khadr.
The reviews on the businesses that are running out of this strip mall have been hit drastically, as many one-star reviews flood in. “Found out that this location pays its rent to Omar Khadr. Please boycott until the owners relocate otherwise you are indirectly paying a terrorist,” one person posted about the travel agency.
It should be noted though that the tenants of the building have no choice with regards to who owns their building, and punishment for their business being in this strip mall may seem unwarranted.
With the news breaking around Khadr, he continues to be one of the most controversial and notorious figures in our nation’s history. With the Trudeau government’s payout of $10.5 million (which he blamed on the Harper government,) Khadr continues to be a thorn in the side of Canadians as well as the Speer family, who not only have to grieve the loss of a beloved family member, but now have to watch the killer of their beloved flash his cash and toy around with Canadians.
What do you think? Would you support the businesses in the Khadr mall? Let us know in the comments below.