Blog Archives

Aboriginal Affairs shared wide range of information with spy agency to bolster Idle No More surveillance: documents

Idle No More rally in Ottawa, Dec 21, 2012.

Idle No More rally in Ottawa, Dec 21, 2012.

The federal Aboriginal Affairs department shared information with Canada’s spies and other federal law enforcement agencies to bolster surveillance of the Idle No More movement, internal government documents show.

The documents, obtained under the Access to Information Act, also reveal how easily Canadian authorities assume the possibility of violence when it comes to monitoring First Nation demonstrations.

The Harper government’s proposed anti-terror bill, Bill C-51, would make it easier for federal departments and agencies to share information on widely-defined national security grounds. Read the rest of this entry

Feds put protest activity under microscope in compiling national ‘risk forecast’

Drum group at Sarnia CN rail blockade, Dec 23.

Drum group at Sarnia CN rail blockade, Dec 23, 2012.

‘In a true democracy, protest and dissent should be celebrated, not investigated': Paul Champ

The Canadian Press/CBC News, March 18, 2015

Use of social media, the spread of “citizen journalism,” and the involvement of young people are among the key trends highlighted by a federal analysis of protest activity in Canada over the last half-decade.

A growing geographic reach and an apparent increase in protests that target infrastructure such as rail lines are also boosting the impact of demonstrations, says the Government Operations Centre analysis, obtained under the Access to Information Act. Read the rest of this entry

CSIS helped government prepare for expected Northern Gateway protests

Logo of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS).

Logo of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS).

Release comes amid heightened concern over new powers proposed in anti-terror bill

By Jim Bronskill, The Canadian Press/CBC News, March 17, 2015

Canada’s spy agency helped senior federal officials figure out how to deal with protests expected last summer in response to resource and energy development issues — including a pivotal decision on the Northern Gateway pipeline.

The Canadian Security Intelligence Service prepared advice and briefing material for two June meetings of the deputy ministers’ committee on resources and energy, documents obtained under the Access to Information Act show.

The issue was driven by violence during demonstrations against natural-gas fracking in New Brunswick the previous summer and the government’s interest in “assuming a proactive approach” in 2014, says a newly declassified memo from Tom Venner, CSIS assistant director for policy and strategic partnerships. Read the rest of this entry

Anti-Oil Activists Named as National Security Threats Respond to Leaked RCMP Report

Protest against Enbridge's proposed Line 9, in Toronto.

Protest against Enbridge’s proposed Line 9, in Toronto.

By Michael Toledano, Vice.com, Feb 17, 2015

As the Harper government’s Bill C-51 moves to extend anti-terrorism legislation to include anyone who interferes with the “critical infrastructure,” “territorial integrity,” or “economic and financial stability of Canada,” a leaked report from the RCMP’s Critical Infrastructure Intelligence Team demonstrates how aboriginals and environmentalists are already being targeted by law enforcement for these reasons.

Read the rest of this entry

‘Anti-petroleum’ movement a growing security threat to Canada, RCMP say

CSIS is about to become more ‘kinetic.’ Bad idea

Citing war on terror, Tories propose sweeping new powers for spies, police

CSIS powers beefed up under new bill tabled by Steven Blaney

Logo of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS).

Logo of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS).

Public safety minister says it’s time to stop ‘under-reacting to the great threats against us’

By Susana Mas, Chris Hall, CBC News Oct 27, 2014

Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney has tabled a bill in the House of Commons today to expand the powers of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS), Canada’s spy agency.

Bill C-44, dubbed the protection of Canada from terrorists act, was expected to be introduced last week before a gunman launched an attack in the capital.

“This bill is bringing clarity into the CSIS Act while protecting individual rights,” Blaney told reporters in Ottawa after he tabled the bill on Monday.

The proposed legislation amends the Canadian Security Intelligence Service Act, as well as the Strengthening Canadian Citizenship Act and makes a consequential amendment to the Access to Information Act. Read the rest of this entry

Attack in Ottawa could increase calls to give CSIS more power

Two apparent snipers from the RCMP Emergency Response Team attempt to enter a building during the Jihadist attack in Ottawa, Oct 22, 2014.

Two snipers from the RCMP Emergency Response Team attempt to enter a building during the shootings in Ottawa that left one soldier dead as well as the shooter on Oct 22, 2014.

By Colin Freeze, The Globe and Mail, Oct. 22 2014

Two deadly attacks perpetrated against Canadian soldiers by suspected extremists are raising the stakes in the domestic fight against terrorism.

In recent months, the public and politicians have pushed federal security officials to get more aggressive. One response has been renewed efforts to block or revoke passports to stop the exodus of extremists to fight with the Islamic State jihadis and related groups.

Yet counterterrorism officials increasingly regard extremists in Canada as more menacing and harder to predict. Security measures are already stretching to their legal limits – yet Parliament is set to confer more powers to federal agents as the threats continue to mount.

“This will lead us to strengthen our resolve and redouble our efforts,” Prime Minister Stephen Harper said Wednesday evening in a televised address. He said that the violence in Ottawa and near Montreal will lead his government to beef up counter-terrorism efforts. Read the rest of this entry

Yves Fortier’s oil patch ties prompt civil liberties complaint

Yves Fortier, member of the Security Intelligence Review Committee (SIRC).

Yves Fortier, member of the Security Intelligence Review Committee (SIRC).

Yves Fortier sat on board of company behind Keystone pipeline

By Jim Bronskill, The Canadian Press/CBC News, Sept 28, 2014

A civil liberties group is objecting to Canada’s spy watchdog assigning Yves Fortier to investigate alleged spying on environmental activists, citing a conflict due to his former petroleum industry ties.

The British Columbia Civil Liberties Association’s lawyer has written to the Security Intelligence Review Committee asking that Fortier “recuse himself from any participation” in the matter since he once sat on the board of TransCanada Pipelines — the company behind the Keystone XL project. Read the rest of this entry

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