Saturday, June 03, 2006

Toronto terrorism threat (UPDATE 3)

The National Post is reporting that "[a] Canadian counter-terrorism investigation that led to the arrests of 17 people accused of plotting bombings in Ontario is linked to probes in a half-dozen countries":

Well before police tactical teams began their sweeps around Toronto on Friday, at least 18 related arrests had already taken place in Canada, the United States, Britain, Bosnia, Denmark, Sweden, and Bangladesh.

The six-month RCMP investigation, called Project OSage, is one of several overlapping probes that include an FBI case called Operation Northern Exposure and a British probe known as Operation Mazhar.

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More details of the arrested suspects are coming out. Also from the Post article linked above: "With the exception of two men, who are aged 43 and 30, the alleged terrorists are all in their teens and early 20s. They include men of Somali, Egyptian, Jamaican, and Trinidadian origin. All are residents of Canada and 'for the most part' all are Canadian citizens, police said."

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The Post has published a secret CSIS document on "Sunni Islamic Extremism". See here.

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And, finally, the Post's Stewart Bell asks why Canada is "growing its own extremists". See here. Basing his claims largely on CSIS reports, Bell asserts that "[a] Canadian Jihad is apparently underway".

This must be taken seriously, and CSIS and the government are certainly doing so, but I would advise caution before jumping to such a dramatic conclusion.

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