Canada prom­ises bet­ter han­dling of ter­ror cases

The Pak Banker - - 6international -

VAN­COU­VER: Canada has vowed to im­prove co-op­er­a­tion be­tween its po­lice and in­tel­li­gence ser­vices to com­bat ter­ror­ism and avoid a re­peat of the Air In­dia bomb­ing, but it is still work­ing on de­tails of how it will do that.

The govern­ment re­leased a "road map" for deal­ing with ter­ror­ism cases that echoes some rec­om­men­da­tions of an of­fi­cial in­quiry this year that found a "cas­cad­ing se­ries of er­rors" in Canada's han­dling of the 1985 bomb­ing of Air In­dia Flight 182. The ex­plo­sion over the At­lantic Ocean, while the plane was en route from Mon­treal to In­dia via London, killed 329 peo­ple and re­mains his­tory's dead­li­est bomb­ing of an air­liner.

"The threat of ter­ror­ism is real, per­sis­tent and evolv­ing... It is not too late to learn from the atroc­ity that was Air In­dia," Pub­lic Safety Min­is­ter Vic Toews told re­porters in Ot­tawa.

The new plan, parts of which had al­ready been un­veiled, prom­ises im­proved in­tel­li­gence-shar­ing among po­lice, the na­tional spy agency-the Cana­dian Se­cu­rity In­tel­li­gence Ser­vice-and govern­ment fi­nance of­fi­cials.

The Air In­dia in­quiry found that po­lice and in­tel­li­gence of­fi­cials failed to share ev­i­dence that could have stopped the at­tack be­fore it hap­pened, and also found that in­fight­ing ham­pered ef­forts to catch and pros­e­cute those in­volved.

De­spite one of the most in­ten­sive in­ves­ti­ga­tions in Cana­dian his­tory, only one per­son was ever con­victed in con­nec­tion with the bomb­ing, and the Cana­dian govern­ment apol­o­gized this year to the vic­tims' fam­i­lies.

Toews ac­knowl­edged that Ot­tawa is still wrestling with thorny le­gal and pri­vacy ques­tions con­cern­ing how in­for­ma­tion col­lected for na­tional se­cu­rity pur­poses can also be used as ev­i­dence in crim­i­nal cases. "In­tel­li­gence is col­lected for very dif­fer­ent pur­poses and is col­lected dif­fer­ently than ev­i­dence for a crim­i­nal trial," Toews, a for­mer pros­e­cu­tor, told re­porters. -Reuters

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Pakistan

© PressReader. All rights reserved.