Intelligence committee warns China, Russia targeting Canadian COVID-19 research

OTTAWA — Parliament’s special intelligence committee is warning that China and Russia are increasingly targeting Canada with espionage and cyber attacks — and that the COVID-19 pandemic is adding to the problem.

The National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians says that includes attempts to steal Canadian research on COVID-19 and vaccines, and sow misinformation.

The committee’s assessment is in a new report tabled in the House of Commons today, four months after the document was first presented to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

The committee also found that the terrorist threat to Canada has shifted since its last such assessment in 2018.

It suggests the threat posed by Islamic extremist groups such as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant has declined while right-wing extremism is on the rise.

The committee, which is made up of MPs and senators from all major parties, is also calling on the federal government to strengthen its monitoring and reporting of foreign interference in Canadian politics.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 12, 2021.

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