True North Initiative: News Scan 10 02 17

TOP STORIES

Edmonton police stabbing, truck rampage being investigated as acts of terrorism

A Edmonton police officer was stabbed Saturday evening near Commonwealth Stadium and four pedestrians injured by a fleeing truck in what police are investigating as an act of terrorism. The first attack happened when an Edmonton Police Service special duty member was stabbed by a man who had crashed a car into a police barricade outside the stadium, where the Edmonton Eskimos were hosting Winnipeg on Canadian Forces Appreciation Night. (Global) (Global)

Edmonton terror attack: Horrific moment terrorist mows down cop then stabs him during bloody terror attack in Canada that left five injured

Police released video footage of a 30-year-old suspect ramming a van into a police car - sending Constable Mike Chernyk flying 15ft into the air. The driver then gets out and repeatedly knifes the officer, who wrestles the suspect to the ground and then rises as the suspect flees on foot. The officer was taken to a hospital and treated for non-life-threatening injuries while a manhunt was launched. Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson said: "To the best of our knowledge, this was a lone wolf attack."Seeing the video is very upsetting because of the level of violence and level of intent." (Sun.co.uk)

The Canadian cop, 48, who was run over and stabbed by lone wolf terrorist

The Canadian cop who was brutally run over and stabbed by a lone-wolf terrorist with an Islamic State group flag has been named as Constable Mike Chernyk. Chernyk's shocking attack - which saw him flying through the air before being knifed as he lay prone on the ground - was captured on CCTV on Saturday night near near Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton, Alberta, during a football game. (Daily Mail)

Suspect in Canada terror attack is Somali refugee, police say

The suspect accused of stabbing a police officer before crashing a speeding U-Haul van into a crowd of people in Edmonton, Canada, had come to the country from Somalia trying to claim refugee status, police revealed. Officers took the 30-year-old suspect into custody and he apparently acted alone, Edmonton Police Chief Rod Knecht said. Officers said pending charges included terrorism and five counts of attempted murder, but they did not reveal his name. An Islamic State flag was found in the car that hit the officer, according to Knecht. (FOX)

Suspect facing terrorism charges in Edmonton attacks investigated in 2015

Mounties say the man accused of attacking a police officer and running down four pedestrians with a rental truck in a dramatic late-night downtown chase is a Somali refugee once investigated for espousing extremism. RCMP assistant commissioner Marlin Degrand said the suspect, 30, was checked thoroughly in 2015 and deemed at that time to not pose a threat. "There was insufficient evidence to pursue terrorism charges or a peace bond," Degrand said Sunday. "The suspect was actually not deemed at that time to pose a threat to the security of Canada." (CTV)

Somali refugee suspected of Edmonton terror attacks kept low profile, community leaders say

Abdulahi Hasan Sharif, the Somali refugee said to have committed suspected terrorist attacks in Edmonton late Saturday, kept a low profile in the city's Somali community. CBC News conducted numerous interviews with members of Edmonton's Somali and broader Muslim communities but no one appeared to know Sharif. The 30-year-old's name triggered no recognition but the acts he is suspected of perpetrating were unanimously condemned. (CBC)

Police were told Edmonton terror suspect was spreading extremism

A police national security team say they interviewed a young man in Edmonton about his extremist ideological musings two years before he was arrested for terrorism charges following knife and vehicle attacks in the Alberta capital. In what police and politicians are calling a “lone-wolf” attack, which may have links to Islamic extremism, a city police constable directing traffic around a football game Saturday evening was struck by a car, then stabbed repeatedly in the head and face. An ISIS flag was found in the weaponized Chevy Malibu. Hours later, the same suspect was in a U-Haul truck, leading police on a lengthy chase and hitting four downtown pedestrians before his truck flipped and he was arrested. (Macleans)

Edmonton terror attacks: Police discourage backlash against Muslims

On Sunday, Edmonton police and the RCMP revealed that the person suspected of injuring an Edmonton police officer and four pedestrians in a terrorist attack Saturday night is a Somali man, who arrived in Canada as a refugee. (Global)

Islamic State claims fatal stabbings of 2 women at train station in France

A man with a knife stabbed two women to death Sunday at the main train station in the southern French city of Marseille as he reportedly shouted “Allahu akbar!” — an attack the Islamic State group claimed was the work of one its “soldiers.” French soldiers shot the man to death after the attacks and authorities were working to determine if he had links to Islamic extremism. (Toronto Sun) (BBC)

Las Vegas shooting: More than 20 dead, 100 injured after shooting at music festival

A gunman on the 32nd floor of a Las Vegas Strip casino opened fire on an outdoor music festival, killing at least 20 people – including two off-duty police officers – and wounding more than 100, officials said early Monday. Country music star Jason Aldean was performing on stage when the shots began ringing out Sunday night at the Route 91 Harvest Festival. (Global) (CNN) (BBC) (ABC)

 

OTHER STORIES (Domestic and International)

'Was he under surveillance?': Questions surround Edmonton 'acts of terrorism,' security expert says

With a man in custody for what Edmonton police call "acts of terrorism" in the city overnight, investigators will try to determine if he had associates who aided him or could pose a continuing danger to the public, says a Canadian security expert. The 30-year-old suspect was apprehended following a high-speed chase just before midnight through streets filled with bar patrons and football fans that ended only after a white U-Haul van he was driving struck four pedestrians and flipped on its side. (CBC)

Anti-illegal immigration rally met by pro-immigration protesters

Two groups of demonstrators mobilized on Saturday at the Peace Arch border crossing, one to voice their objections to illegal immigration and another to support immigration and denounce racism. The face-off mirrored other dueling protests across the country on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, in Peterborough Ont. and at a border crossing near Montreal. Some of the anti-illegal immigration protestors at the Peace Arch in White Rock taunted the pro-immigration protestors as they left, but otherwise the event was peaceful. (CTV)

Assault charge laid after violence erupts at Peterborough anti-racism rally

Police in Peterborough, Ont., say a 22-year-old man has been charged with assault causing bodily harm after a protest against a planned anti-immigration rally took a violent turn on Saturday. Upwards of 500 people descended on Confederation Square to voice their discontent for the event, which had originally been slated to take place at the public park. (Yahoo) (National Post) (Global)

Pro- and anti- immigration protesters face off at Lacolle Border crossing

Members of the right-wing group Storm Alliance held a rally at the St-Bernard-de-Lacolle border crossing to protest what they call the destructive policies of Justin Trudeau's government, while Solidarity Across Borders, held a counter demonstration to symbolically show support for refugees. Around 200 members of Storm Alliance traded insults across a police line with the group of pro-refugee protesters outside the St-Bernard-de-Lacolle border station. (CTV)

A handful of people hold anti-immigrant protest in Fredericton

A handful of people gathered at Odell park in Fredericton Saturday to protest against government spending, and insecure borders, as other similar protests took place across the country.  The protests are in response to increased asylum seekers entering the country illegally. But the four protesters in Fredericton were outnumbered by counter protestors, at least 12 of whom showed up to share a message of "open hearts and open borders." (CBC)

Asylum-seeker sues federal government over ‘humiliating’ 5-year imprisonment

A Toronto man, who was held in immigration detention for five-and-a-half years, has launched a multimillion-dollar lawsuit against Ottawa. Abdirahmaan Warssama, 54, was detained at two maximum security detention facilities, first in Toronto and later in Lindsay, Ont., from May 2010 to December 2015 while waiting for his deportation to Somalia. Over 2,042 days behind bars, he underwent more than 70 detention reviews but each time an independent panel sent him back to jail, convinced he was likely to flee and fail to appear for his removal — until a Federal Court judge overturned his continued detention and ordered Ottawa to explore the possibility of returning Warssama to Somalia and consider alternatives to detention. (Toronto Star)

A 'game-changer': Jagmeet Singh 'kicks the door open' and wins NDP leadership

Jagmeet Singh was declared the new leader of the NDP in a decisive victory after a single round of voting ended on Sunday. The Ontario MPP was named leader with 53.8 per cent of the vote at a Toronto convention centre, during the finale of a drawn-out leadership campaign that began after current leader Tom Mulcair lost a vote on a leadership review in April 2016. (National Post)

Scheer: Liberals showing 'intolerance' for female MP by boycotting committee vote

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer says Justin Trudeau and Liberal MPs are showing “intolerance” for a “strong, competent, dynamic young woman” his party nominated to chair a status of women committee. Liberal committee members walked out Tuesday during a vote to install MP Rachael Harder as chair, saying she isn’t fit because she holds anti-abortion views. (CTV)

Canada's army looks to recruit reservists in face of dwindling numbers

For the first time, the Canadian Army is opening its doors at every reserve armoury across the country in an attempt to boost its dwindling part-time force. At more than 100 open houses, recruiters will pitch a new expedited enrolment process and guaranteed summer jobs for students. Reserve units will try to wow would-be members with demos of artillery equipment and combat training, as well as displays from medics, engineers and weapons technicians. (CBC)

Kurdish independence vote leaves Canadian Forces in a bind

For the past three years, Canadian troops have been based in Iraq’s semi-autonomous region of Kurdistan, providing support for both Kurdish and Iraqi forces in their fight against ISIS. But the Kurdish independence referendum, which saw an overwhelming majority vote in favour of separating from Iraq, has raised fears that the Kurds and Iraqis may soon point their weapons away from ISIS and towards each other. (Global)

Coyotes' Max Domi calls for stricter immigration controls in Canada after attack

Arizona Coyotes forward Max Domi called for tighter immigration controls in his home country of Canada after a terrorist attack in Edmonton, Alberta this weekend. On his Twitter page Sunday, the 22-year-old Domi said "this is why we have to be aware of some of the people we let into our country," and he then defended himself from those who took offense to his comment. (ABC 15)

Catalans vote for independence by landslide in referendum marred by violence

Catalonia’s regional government declared a landslide win for the “yes” side in a disputed referendum on independence from Spain that degenerated into ugly scenes of mayhem on Sunday, with more than 800 people injured as riot police attacked peaceful protesters and unarmed civilians gathered to cast their ballots. (Global) (BBC)

For Muslim refugees in Mexico, community is hard to find

Ali came to the Americas by way of Ecuador in late 2016. He'd just finished a university degree in Malaysia, where he'd earned a scholarship to study construction management. He couldn't return to Saudi Arabia, where he'd lived before, nor to his now-war-torn home of Yemen. He moved to Ecuador because he'd heard he would be able to get residency there. But that hope never came to fruition. Once he arrived, he found he could only stay for six months. So he went then to the United States embassy, to try his luck at getting a student visa. (The Week)

 

EDITORIAL AND OPINION PIECES

Candice Malcolm: Border fiasco continues, testing Canadians’ limits

The Trudeau government’s outrageous tax hike on small businesses has overshadowed another of the government’s blunders: the ongoing surge of illegal immigration. While the number of daily crossings is down slightly, the crisis is far from over. And it’s become clear that the Trudeau government has no strategy to stop the ongoing flow of illegal migrants. (Toronto Sun)

Anthony Furey: Toronto public school board guide pushes Muslim greetings during morning announcements and other intrusions

While public school students all across Canada typically learn about the world’s major religions at some point during their studies, one school board’s guidebook on Islam is edging close to religious instruction and indoctrination. The Toronto District School Board designates a number of heritage months throughout the year and October is Islamic Heritage Month. A 170-page guidebook prepared for teachers recommends a variety of religious intrusions into the public school system (Toronto Sun)

Douglas Todd: How to debate immigration without distorting facts and foes

Canada is one of the few advanced countries that can’t seem to hold an authentic public discussion about immigration policy. Canadian boosters of high immigration and those who oppose it are mutually contemptuous. Their verbal boxing matches are dominated by sloganeering and name-calling. (Vancouver Sun)

Lorne Gunter: Politicians wrongly point fingers at us in terror attack

Both New Democrat Premier Rachel Notley and Mayor Don Iveson left the impression in their news conferences Sunday morning in the wake of Saturday’s terror attacks outside the Eskimos game at Commonwealth Stadium and in downtown Edmonton’s bar strip, that they were as worried about you and me as they were about a second radical Muslim attacker. Multiple police sources confirm that the suspect in Saturday’s terror attacks, 30-year-old Abdulahi Hasan Sharif, a Somali refugee here in Canada, acted alone and was self-radicalized (Canoe)

Mark Bonokoski: Billionaires know best in Trudeau's world

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who backtracked on electoral reform and parliamentary transparency, has finally got his back up over shutting down loopholes on small business owners. Despite the fury local MPs have received this summer, and harsh words from business owners decrying being labelled as “cheats,” the Liberals are steadfast in refusing to alter their plans. (Toronto Sun)

John Ivison: It'll be Justin versus Jagmeet in the GQ election of 2019

When we look in the rear-view mirror in late October 2019, the election of Jagmeet Singh as the new federal NDP leader could well have been pivotal. In April, the Liberals won a comfortable victory in the Markham-Thornhill by-election, in large measure because the NDP won just 3.5 per cent of the vote. If the New Democrats remain so moribund in the suburbs of Canada’s big cities, we will likely see the next Trudeau generation inherit the family business before we see a change of government. (National Post)

 

REPORTS, COMMITTEE HEARINGS, LEGISLATIVE UPDATES

-       Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security meet tomorrow to study Bill C-21, an Act to amend the Customs Act (Public)

-       Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration meet tomorrow to get another Briefing on the Issue of Asylum Seekers (Public)

-       Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development meet tomorrow to study the Situation in Eastern Europe and Central Asia 25 Years after the End of the Cold War and Canada’s Development Finance Initiative (In Camera)

-       Standing Committee on National Defence meet later today for the Election of Vice-Chairs (Partly in Public/in Camera)