Tags: Exclusive Interviews | Homeland Security | MidPoint | War on Terrorism | Ottawa | shootings | terrorism

Canadian Prof: Ottawa Shootings Appear 'Connected'

By    |   Wednesday, 22 Oct 2014 03:03 PM

Amid reports of gunmen in Ottawa attacking Canada's parliament complex and other sites, a Canadian counter-terrorism expert told Newsmax TV on Wednesday that the shootings might be part of a coordinated attack, but she cautioned that authorities were still trying to secure the area and gather facts.

"There are reports of three separate shootings. It seems likely they are connected, but we don't even know that for sure at the moment," Veronica Kitchen, associate political science professor at University of Waterloo, told "MidPoint" host Ed Berliner.

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A soldier was shot dead on Wednesday at Ottawa's Canadian War Memorial, and gunfire also erupted inside Parliament, where at least one assailant was said to have been killed, according to reports.

Kitchen noted the closeness of Wednesday's attacks with the running down of two Canadian soldiers on Monday in Quebec, reportedly by a driver who had become attracted to radical Islam and was being monitored by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).

The driver, 25-year-old Muslim convert Martin Roleau, was shot dead by police after a car chase. One of the hit-and-run victims died of injuries, while the other remains in critical condition, according to reports.

With chaos still unfolding in Ottawa, Kitchen said that such attacks — whether or not the work of Islamic terrorists — are "very hard to predict and very hard to prevent."

She said that "often the perpetrators are either not previously on the radar of police or security agencies, or — as in the case of the perpetrator of the attack in Quebec — are on the radar of security agencies but have not yet done anything that warrants arresting them."

Kitchen was also asked about her country's preparedness for a major terrorist attack.

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She said Canada has not left the work of terror readiness to the United States.

"Canada cooperates very closely with the U.S. and other members of the Five Eyes intelligence alliance," said Kitchen.

She said that both the RCMP and the Canadian Security Intelligence Service have been tracking "radicalized individuals" who have left Canada, possibly to train and fight with jihadists abroad, and in some instances have tried to return with the intention of committing violence.

Canadian authorities have also thwarted attempted terrorist attacks, including the so-called "Toronto 18" plot to behead Canadian politicians, and a planned assault on parliamentary buildings in Victoria in 2013, said Kitchen.

Canada's security forces also work at developing good relations with local communities, she said, "so that those communities are able to alert the authorities if they think an individual in their community is radicalized to violence."

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Amid reports of gunmen in Ottawa attacking Canada's parliament complex and other sites, a Canadian counter-terrorism expert told Newsmax TV on Wednesday that the shootings may be part of a coordinated attack, but she cautioned that authorities are still trying gather facts.
Ottawa, shootings, terrorism, coordinated
3647
2014-03-22
Wednesday, 22 Oct 2014 03:03 PM
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