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National Security—Terrorism

Hon. Linda Frum: Honourable senators, my question is for the government leader.

Senator Harder, on May 15 I asked you questions about the arrest of two individuals in Richmond Hill for possession of explosives and the fact that Minister Goodale immediately declared that this incident was not related to national security. You answered me that, “The Minister of Public Safety has an obligation . . . to ensure that Canadians are appropriately informed when incidents like this occur.”

We have since learned that investigators believe the 18-year-old who was arrested in this case was “on the cusp of radicalization” and that his phone has been seized by the FBI.

Senator Harder, if the FBI is involved, this matter is surely not local to Richmond Hill. Why is your government still insisting that there is nothing to see here, even though you said it’s the minister’s responsibility to properly inform Canadians?

Hon. Peter Harder (Government Representative in the Senate): I thank the honourable senator for her question. I’d be happy to follow up with the minister concerned. I think that there’s an obligation on all our parts to ensure transparency within the bounds of appropriate concern for the safety and security of Canadians.

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