Practice Relating to Rule 128. Release and Return of Persons Deprived of Their Liberty
Section D. Voluntary nature of return
Canada’s LOAC Manual (1999) states: “PWs [prisoners of war] should not be repatriated against their wishes during hostilities.”
Canada’s LOAC Manual (2001) states in its chapter on the treatment of prisoners of war (PWs): “PWs should not be repatriated against their wishes during hostilities.”
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: “In no circumstances may a protected person be transferred to a state where he or she has reason to fear persecution on account of his political opinions or religious beliefs.”
Canada’s Prisoner of War Handling and Detainees Manual (2004) states that “no PW [prisoner of war] who is eligible for repatriation may be repatriated against his wishes”.
With regard to asylum for prisoners of war, the manual states:
It is Canadian policy that PW should not be repatriated against their will. Arrangements for PW who do not wish to return to their state of origin will depend on the circumstances at the time but may include applications for asylum under normal procedures.