Practice Relating to Rule 123. Recording and Notification of Personal Details of Persons Deprived of Their Liberty
Canada’s LOAC Manual (1999) provides that an official information bureau shall be established at the outbreak of hostilities to gather and pass on all information concerning prisoners of war.
The manual further states:
Each party is bound, as soon as possible, to give its bureau full particulars relating to the placing in custody for more than 2 weeks, the placing in assigned residence, or internment, of any protected person … It is the duty of each party to see that its various departments give the bureau prompt information concerning the protected persons, e.g., transfers, releases, repatriations, escape, admissions to hospital, births and deaths.
Canada’s LOAC Manual (2001) states in its chapter on the treatment of the wounded, sick and shipwrecked: “Parties holding wounded, sick and shipwrecked personnel are obliged to record and forward the same details of identity and capture as in the case of any other PW [prisoner of war].”
In its chapter on the treatment of prisoners of war, the manual states:
1031. Capture Card
1. Immediately upon capture and upon transfer from one place of detention to another, PWs shall be allowed to send a card to their families and to the Central PWs Agency giving information of their capture, address and state of health. These cards must be forwarded without delay.
1036. Information Bureau and Central Agency
1. On the outbreak of the conflict, and in all cases of occupation, all parties concerned shall set up an official Information Bureau for PWs in their power. Similar action shall be taken by any neutral or non-belligerent state receiving within its territory persons entitled to be treated as PWs. All parties to the conflict, neutrals and non-belligerent states shall inform the Bureau concerning the PWs in their hands, and the Bureau shall pass such information to the Protecting Power and the Central Agency. The Information Bureau is also responsible for replying to enquiries concerning PWs and collecting all personal valuables and documents useful to next of kin, left by PWs who have been repatriated or released, escaped or died.
In its chapter on the treatment of civilians in the hands of a party to the conflict or an occupying power and, more specifically, in a section entitled “Aliens in the territory of a party to the conflict”, the manual states: “Unless the protected person objects, the belligerent must as soon as possible notify the Protecting Power of the names of those interned or placed in an assigned residence and of their release therefrom.”
In the same chapter, in a section entitled “Information bureau and central agency”, the manual states:
1132. Information bureau
1. The [of the 1949 Geneva Convention IV] requires that upon the outbreak of a conflict and in all cases of occupation each of the parties to the conflict must establish an official information bureau to receive and transmit information concerning the protected persons who are in its power. Each party is bound, as soon as possible, to give its bureau full particulars relating to the placing in custody for more than two weeks, the placing in assigned residence, or the internment, of any protected person. It is also the duty of each party to see that its various departments concerned with such matters give the bureau prompt information concerning the protected persons, for example, transfers, releases, repatriations, escape, admissions to hospital, births and deaths.
2. Each national bureau must forward without delay information concerning protected persons to the powers of which such persons are nationals or in whose territory they formerly resided. This is to be done through the Protecting Powers and through a central agency, which is to be set up in a neutral country. The national bureau must also reply to all enquiries concerning protected persons unless sending such information would be detrimental to the person concerned or to his or her relatives.
1133. Central agency
1. A central information agency for protected persons, particularly internees, must be set up in a neutral country. The ICRC may, if it thinks it necessary, propose to the powers concerned the organization of such an agency. The duty of the agency is to collect the information referred to in the preceding paragraphs and to send it to the countries of origin or residence of the persons concerned, unless this course might be harmful to the persons concerned or their relatives.
Canada’s Prisoner of War Handling and Detainees Manual (2004) states:
[The 1949 Geneva Convention III] places a duty on all parties in a conflict to open a Prisoner of War Information Bureau (PWIB) at the outset of hostilities. There is also a requirement for neutral and non-belligerent nations to open a Bureau if there is a likelihood of those who might be classified as PW finding their way into their territory.
With respect to prisoner-of-war (PW) documentation, the manual states:
[The 1949 Geneva Conventions] require Detaining Powers to notify the relevant authorities of the capture of the PW and of every subsequent event affecting him including transfers, releases, repatriations, escapes, admissions to hospital or death. In order to fulfil all these requirements, it is essential that a well understood documentation process is in place.
Canada’s Use of Force Manual (2008) states:
Chapter 4: Use of Force in International Operations
402. Types of International Operations
1. In general, there are four types of international operational relationships in which the CF [Canadian Forces] may participate with each one having unique considerations pertaining to the use of force, self-defence and rules of engagement:
a. Alliance. Alliance operations refer to operations conducted under a formal standing alliance such as the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) or Canada-United States (CANUS). In these cases, there are formal policy, command-and-control and force structure instruments which will affect ROE [rules of engagement] development and application;
b. Coalition. A coalition is a less formal alliance which is normally limited to a specific mission. Coalitions normally lack the formal status of forces' agreements and infrastructure architectures that are common to alliances such as NATO. A coalition may operate under the legal umbrella of a UN Security Council resolution, but they are not UN missions. Once a mission or operation has been completed, the coalition is normally disbanded;
c. United Nations (UN). UN missions operate under a UN Security Council resolution and fall within the UN command-and-control structure; and
d. Unilateral. An international operation where Canadian forces are operating unilaterally within a region or area.
407. Supplementary Direction
3. Detainees. In support of the operational or security objectives of an international operation, Canadian forces may be required to detain persons. Reasons to detain include, but are not limited to, persons who do the following:
a. interfere with the accomplishment of the mission and related tasks;
b. otherwise use or threaten force against friendly forces, or the equipment and materials belonging to them, or under their protection;
c. enter an area under the control of friendly forces without prior authorization; and
d. are suspected of breaches of the law of armed conflict.
4. Where the use of deadly force is authorized in a given situation, that authority also includes the authority to detain persons against whom deadly force could have been used. In all other cases, specific ROE must be authorized in order to detain persons. The standards provided in the Geneva Conventions will be the minimum standard for the treatment of all detainees whether or not the Geneva Conventions legally apply during the operation.
In 2008, in the Amnesty International Canada case, Canada’s Federal Court dismissed an application for judicial review on the basis of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms with respect to persons detained by the Canadian Forces (CF) in Afghanistan and their transfer to Afghan authorities. The Federal Court stated:
 To assist in resolving this dispute in a timely and efficient manner, the parties have jointly agreed to have the issue of whether the Charter applies in the context [of] Canada’s military involvement in the armed conflict in Afghanistan determined on the basis of the following questions, pursuant to Rule 107(1) of the Federal Courts Rules:
1. Does the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms apply during the armed conflict in Afghanistan to the detention of non-Canadians by the Canadian Forces or their transfer to Afghan authorities to be dealt with by those authorities?
2. If the answer to the above question is “NO” then would the Charter nonetheless apply if the Applicants were ultimately able to establish that the transfer of the detainees in question would expose them to a substantial risk of torture?
 For the reasons that follow, I have determined that the answer to both of the questions posed by the motion is “No”. As a result, the applicants’ application for judicial review must therefore be dismissed.
 Even before the Afghan Compact was concluded, the governments of Canada and Afghanistan had signed a document outlining the nature of Canada’s involvement and powers within Afghanistan: see the “Technical Arrangements between the Government of Canada and the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan”, dated December 18, 2005.
 The Technical Arrangements further provide that:
Canadian personnel may need to use force (including deadly force) to ensure the accomplishment of their operational objectives, the safety of the deployed force, including designated persons, designated property, and designated locations. Such measures could include the use of close air support, firearms or other weapons; the detention of persons; and the seizure of arms and other materiel. Detainees would be afforded the same treatment as Prisoners of War. Detainees would be transferred to Afghan authorities in a manner consistent with international law and subject to negotiated assurances regarding their treatment and transfer. …
b) The Canadian Forces’ Detention of Individuals in Afghanistan
 As part of Canada’s military operations in Afghanistan, Canadian Forces are from time to time required to capture and detain insurgents, or those assisting the insurgents, who may pose a threat to the safety of Afghan nationals, as well as to members of the Canadian military and allied forces.
 Theatre Standing Order 321A further provides that while in Canadian custody, detainees are to be “treated fairly and humanely” in accordance with “applicable international law and CF Doctrine”.
 Canada informs the International Committee of the Red Cross when the Canadian Forces detain an individual in Afghanistan, but does not notify the Afghan government that one of its citizens has been detained, unless and until the detainee is to be transferred to Afghan custody.
 While in Canadian custody, detainees are interrogated, searched, photographed and fingerprinted. Detainees are not provided with access to legal counsel during their detention by the Canadian Forces, nor are they afforded any opportunity to make representations prior to being handed over to the Afghan authorities.
 The respondents have refused to provide any information with respect to the identity or whereabouts of specific individuals who have been detained by the Canadian Forces, on the grounds of national security.
 The respondents do maintain, however, that Canada has no legal authority to establish or run a long-term detention facility in Afghanistan. That is, according to the respondents, the Canadian Forces have not been authorized to detain for the long term, either by the Government of Canada or by ISAF commanders, who have operational control over Canadian Forces. Nor has the Government of Afghanistan authorized such an encroachment on their sovereignty.
IV. Does the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms apply during the armed conflict in Afghanistan to the detention of non-Canadians by the Canadian forces or their transfer to Afghan authorities to be dealt with by those authorities?
 Insofar as the relationship between the Governments of Afghanistan and Canada is concerned, the two countries have expressly identified international law, including international humanitarian law, as the law governing the treatment of detainees in Canadian custody.
 … [I]n relation to the treatment of detainees, Article 1.2 of the Technical Arrangements provides that detainees are to be afforded “the same treatment as Prisoners of War”, and are to be transferred to Afghan authorities “in a manner consistent with international law and subject to negotiated assurances regarding their treatment and transfer.” …
 The understanding between the Governments of Afghanistan and Canada that Afghan and international law are the legal regimes to be applied to the detainees in Canadian custody is also reflected in Canadian documents dealing with the treatment of detainees.
 In particular, Task Force Afghanistan’s Theatre Standing Order 321A recognizes international law as the appropriate standard governing the treatment of detainees. In this regard, Article 3 states that it is Canadian Forces policy that all detainees be treated to the standard required for prisoners of war, which it describes as being the highest standard required under international law.
 Moreover, Article 18 of TSO 321A provides that while in Canadian custody, detainees are to be “treated fairly and humanely” in accordance with “applicable international law and CF Doctrine”. …
 … [A] number of concerns … flow from the Court’s finding that the Charter does not apply in the circumstances of this case.
 As was noted by Justice Binnie in Hape, the content of human rights protections provided by international law is weaker, and their scope more debatable than Charter guarantees …
 Moreover, the enforcement mechanisms for those standards may not be as robust as those available under the Charter, and have even been described as “rather gentle” …
 That said, the Supreme Court of Canada has carefully considered the scope of the Charter’s extraterritorial reach in R. v. Hape, and has concluded that its reach is indeed very limited. Applying the Supreme Court’s reasoning in Hape to the facts of this case leads to the conclusion that the Charter does not apply to the actions of the Canadian Forces in Afghanistan in issue here.
 Before concluding, it must be noted that the finding that the Charter does not apply does not leave detainees in a legal “no-man’s land”, with no legal rights or protections. The detainees have the rights conferred on them by the Afghan Constitution. In addition, whatever their limitations may be, the detainees also have the rights conferred on them by international law, and, in particular, by international humanitarian law.
[emphasis in original]
The Federal Court of Appeal subsequently upheld the findings of the Federal Court. It stated:
I conclude that the motions judge made no errors in answering the way she did the two questions that were before her. The Charter has no application to the situations therein described. There is no legal vacuum, considering that the applicable law is international humanitarian law.
In 2005, in response to a question concerning the transfer of persons captured by Canadian Forces to US armed forces, the Parliamentary Secretary to Canada’s Minister of National Defence stated:
[W]hen our Canadian Forces apprehend members from Afghanistan, those people are questioned, some are released, some are handed over to U.S. troops and some are handed over to Afghanistan authorities. For all of them, we notify the Red Cross about their whereabouts and the conditions upon which they were released. All are treated under the Geneva Convention. We feel utterly confident that our Canadian Forces members are treating those people in full accordance with humanitarian law.