Friday, October 11, 2013

Canadian Government Uses Security Agencies to Target Environmental Opposition

Canadian security agencies under Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper are actively involved in spying against environmental advocates who oppose the government's dirty energy agenda. A number of Canadian security agencies are involved including the RCMP, Canada's national police force, and Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS). Canadian security agencies have been closely monitoring the activities of environmental advocates which they characterize as a 'threat to national security,' according to the Guardian.

Documents reveal that police and security agencies describe green groups' protests and petitions as 'forms of attack.' Canadian security and police agencies equate terrorism and extremism with peaceful citizens exercising their democratic rights to organize petitions, protest and question government policies, said Jeffrey Monaghan of the Surveillance Studies Centre at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario.

These activities involve more than monitoring, people are being actively prosecuted. In 2011 a Montreal man who wrote letters opposing shale gas fracking was charged under Canada's Anti-Terrorism Act. Those who oppose the Keystone XL pipeline are also being targeted.

According to Monaghan, the Canadian security apparatus has singled out Greenpeace, despite their emphasis on nonviolent activism.

© 2013, Richard Matthews. All rights reserved.

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