Roohi Tabassum: deportation may be her death sentence

Roohi Tassabum
Roohi Tabassum (photo: Aaron Harris / Toronto Star)

Roohi Tabassum is a 44-year old Muslim woman currently residing in Canada, slated for deportation to her native Pakistan in just 7 days.

While many deportations occur without much attention (if any) being paid to individual cases, Ms. Tabassum’s story has ignited a campaign to halt her removal from Canada.

Why? Well, Ms. Tabassum’s deportation, she claims, may very well be a death sentence. She alleges that her estranged husband, outraged by her work at a coed hair salon in Canada, is determined to slay her in an honor killing. Ms. Tabassum has already filed unsuccessfully for refugee status. A subsequent appeal has also failed.

It is unclear exactly why her application to remain in Canada has been rejected, especially considering that the threatening letters she has presented as evidence in her claim would seem to qualify her as a “person in need of protection” under Canadian immigration law. Should her husband truly intend to kill her, even the option to seek refugee status on humanitarian grounds would not be enough to save her, as she’d have to leave Canada for Pakistan while her case is reviewed.

Should her fears be legitimate, Canada would be in violation of its very principles by deporting her to imminent death. If it has been determined that her fears are unfounded, those trying to aid Ms. Tabassum should be told why. To help, please contact the following with a request to have Ms. Tabassum’s case reviewed; and in the meantime, to halt her deportation to Pakistan.

Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship/Immigration/ Multiculturalism:

The Canadian Embassy in the United States:

The Embassy of Canada
501 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC, USA 20001

Phone: 202-682-1740 or 202-682-1755
Fax: 202-682-7726 or 202-682-7738
Immigration Fax: 202-682-7689
Public Affairs Fax: 202-682-7791

**(Not in the United States? Contact your country’s Canadian embassy by clicking here.)

Case Processing Center, Ontario:

2 Robert Speck Parkway,
Suite 1200
Mississauga, ON
L4Z 1H8
Fax: 905-803-7392


6 thoughts on “Roohi Tabassum: deportation may be her death sentence

  1. Raquel, you may also want to raise awareness about another sister on deathrow in Iran. She covered for a murder that was committed when she was only 17. Her scheduled Monday hanging was delayed, but she is still in trouble.

  2. Basbousa,

    Thanks for the note! I am aware of Delara’s case, and am actually working on some new material about her in conjunction with some other activists. is an excellent resource re: Delara Derabi’s case. Great to see you raising awareness like this! You go, sis.


    Rock on, thanks! I am thrilled to be on your blogroll, by the way, and appreciate your feedback.


    I can definitely get behind a bombardment with letters, emails and faxes. Let us know what action you’ve taken and thanks so much.

  3. I just read an article from yesterday’s “National Post” (out of Toronto) that Roohi Tabassum’s deportation order has been suspended until her pre-removal appeal is finished.
    I feel good today.

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