Canada ill-equipped vs. hate groups, like one that set a Filipino on fire — think tank
VANCOUVER, B.C. – Canadian federal law enforcement authorities are not equipped to deal with right-wing groups, a think tank contended.
Candyce Kelshall, president of the Vancouver branch of the Canadian Association for Security and Intelligence Studies, says traditional counter-terrorism measures aren’t equipped to tackle right-wing groups, which she describes as trans-national and decentralized, reported the Vancouver Sun.
Although Ottawa’s ministry of public safety last month added neo-Nazi group Blood and Honour and its “armed branch” — Combat 18 — to official list of terrorist elements, marking the first time right-wing groups appeared on the list, Kelshall said Blood and Honour will likely re-brand in another form.
Blood and Honour came from the British neo-Nazi music movement in the 1970s and spread to Canada and the United States. It made headlines in Vancouver in 2011 after three members were charged in a series of alleged hate crimes dating back to 2008, reported Vancouver Sun.
In one 2009 incident, police said a Filipino man sleeping on a discarded couch was apparently doused in flammable liquid and set on fire. A passerby helped the slightly injured victim douse the fire. Charges were dismissed or stayed in the case.
Blood and Honour was also linked to a series of armed attacked in Edmonton and Calgary in 2012 and 2013.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police’s hate crimes unit said there had been only “limited Blood & Honour activity in B.C. after 2012,” Kelshall, an expert on counter-terrorism, said the group’s affiliate organizations are still active in disseminating hate online or in other far-right groups.