Ottawa truckers protest: CSIS feared extremist violence

But Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) director David Vigneault was unable to provide specific examples to back up his comments, citing classified information.

SCRS avant le convoi, être recrutés en ligne et aussi en personne dans le contexte du convoi”,”text”:”Nous avons vu un certain nombre d’individus, qui inquiétaient le SCRS avant le convoi, être recrutés en ligne et aussi en personne dans le contexte du convoi”}}”>We saw some people who were concerned about the CSIS be recruited online before the convoy and also personally in the context of the convoyVigneault said during his testimony before a special joint commission investigating the federal government’s use of the Emergency Act in February in response to protests that occupied central Washington Ottawa for several weeks.

The concern we had with this convoy, both at the outset and throughout the rest, was the fact that in Canada, in other jurisdictions, we’ve seen violent extremists use these types of protests to commit violence, recruit members, and enable to further spread their ideology.

the CSIS was also concerned about the risk of seeing lonely wolvesspontaneously participate in violent actionsadded Mr. Vigneault.

Director of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, David Vigneault (archive)

Photo: The Canadian Press/Sean Kilpatrick

There we focused our activities during the convoy and providing information to the police.

The law, never before used, granted law enforcement officials temporary powers to address blockades and protests against pandemic-related health restrictions. It assesses an emergency situation that qualifies for application as something that: arises from threats to the security of Canada

Mr Vigneault explained that his agency discovers and investigates threats to Canada’s security every day, including: an increase in violent and anti-authority rhetoric, especially with regard to public health measures

According to him, the CSIS was well informed opportunities than large gatherings and demonstrations offer for acts of violence and for recruitment to ideologically driven violent extremism (DVE), a term used by the agency to cover a variety of grievances, including far-right, anti-authority and anti-government groups and racists.

One of his department’s concerns was the memorandum of understanding issued by Canada Unitone of the groups organizing the convoy called on the governor general and the senate to form a new government with the protesters themselves.

Our review of this manifesto was of course quickly worryingsaid Mr. Vigneault.

Commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), Brenda Lucki, told the commission that the RCMP the governor-general had provided additional protection, Maria Simonfollowing this Memorandum of Understanding.

No failure of the police, according to the commissioner of the RCMP

The Emergency Measures Act allowed bans from entering protest areas, participants to bring minors to illegal gatherings, and banks to freeze the accounts of some of those involved. It also showed the RCMP enforce municipal ordinances and appeal provincial violations where necessary.

At the time, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau argued that its use was necessary to serious challenges to law enforcement’s ability to effectively enforce the law

But that reasoning has been questioned by the opposition and other critics who questioned whether other measures, including police tactics, could have been used.

Brenda Lucki, in uniform, in front of a Canadian flag.

Brenda Lucki, Commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police

Photo: The Canadian Press/Adrian Wyld

Ms Lucki explained that she took part in talks about the possibility of invoking the Emergency Act before it was finally introduced on February 14, but said she never asked for it to be introduced.

When repeatedly asked why the police were unable to act sooner, she indicated that the law gave her officers, as well as those of the Ottawa Police Department, several options for action, such as requiring tow trucks to help move vehicles.

It was a different kind of protest, people didn’t leaveshe remembered.

Furthermore, the commissioner of the . during her appearance RCMP also revealed that powers conferred on police by invocation of the Emergencies Act have not been used by the federal government to clear blockades at Canadian border crossings.

A senator questions police decisions

Ms Lucki said she does not think the event was a police failure, although several senators and deputies on the committee have suggested otherwise.

In my view, the police’s actions prior to the invocation of the law demonstrated a series of failures, not intentional failures, but the inability of the police to contain and adequately control the occupation here in Ottawa.said the senator Peter HarderI find it surprising that you say that the police have not failed in these incidents.

Tuesday’s commission is separate from an investigation, led by Paul Rouleau, a former Ontario Supreme Court judge, that will examine the events that led to the invocation of the Emergency Act and who should make recommendations.

With information from Catherine Tunney by CBC Newsand The Canadian Press

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