I wouldn’t hold my breath given the reluctance of PM Trudeau’s government to see criminal charges related to Chicom espionage in Canada (there have been none under his premiership, many in the US by the Justice Department). Plus those involved are likely to be working out of their four Consulates General in Canada (Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, Montreal) or Chinese Canadians involved with CCP United Front Work Department bodies (no racism, please). But at least the Mounties’ commissioner is publicly referring to China.
CBC story by Catharine Tunney (tweets here):
Commissioner says the force will pursue charges where possible
The RCMP should do more to help those who feel threatened or coerced by foreign governments, including China, to come forward, according to Commissioner Brenda Lucki.
Lucki’s comments to the parliamentary committee on Canada-China relations come after pro-Hong Kong activists in British Columbia say they were threatened online and told by police there was little authorities could do.
Lucki noted that, though the RCMP has a 1-800 number for reporting threats to national security, “by the sounds of it, it sounds like we need to do better communication [NO SHOOT, SHERLOCK!].”
“If people are getting intimidated, as soon as they’re brought to our attention, there’s full investigations [emphasis added–really, by these people? a post: “The Mounties’ Constable Plod, or, the Globe and Mail Maintains the Time may be Right to Bust Up the RCMP‘]. If people, if they have broken any of the laws in the Criminal Code, we will pursue charges in those cases [on flippin’ verra],” Lucki told the committee Thursday night [Feb. 25].
The issue of foreign governments pressuring their international communities is far from new, but Canada’s spy agency has been publicly sounding the alarm…
And last year, one of Canada’s key national security oversight bodies, the National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians [NSICOP], released a report showing how China has been pressing their diaspora and groups based on Canadian campuses as part of “significant and sustained” foreign interference activities in Canada [emphasis added].
The committee said those methods are part of an attempt by foreign actors to sway public opinion, manipulate the media and influence government decision-making.
Public Safety Minister Bill Blair, also testifying before the committee on Thursday, said Ottawa will step in if foreign governments cross the line.
“For those Canadians who may be subject to intimidation or inappropriate influence in Canadian society, we want them to know that we’re here for them and that we’re here to support them,” he said.
“If they need our help, we have the ability and the tools to respond appropriately [HONEST?].”
Earlier this month CSIS director David Vigneault outlined how hostile foreign governments, notably China and Russia, are “aggressively” targeting Canadians, seeking a political and economic advantage.
“A number of foreign states engage in hostile actions that routinely threaten and intimidate individuals in Canada to instill fear, silence dissent, and pressure political opponents [emphasis added],” he said during a public speech.
Vigneault stressed that the threat from China comes from its government [and the Communist Party and its United Front Work Department, well represented in Canada] and not from the Chinese people.