Is Canada already a police state

Canada: United Nations criticizes Canada's counterterrorism law

Canada's new anti-terror law concerns human rights defenders at the United Nations. Since June it has given the government in Ottawa far-reaching powers without protecting political and civil rights, wrote the UN Human Rights Committee in a country report published on Thursday.

The measures, which were only passed by Parliament in Ottawa in June, give secret services, border guards and police officers a robust mandate at home and abroad with which they can shadow, obstruct and arrest terror suspects. They also enable the government to thwart suspects' travel plans, cancel bank transfers and covertly investigate radical websites. Mass surveillance, unsupervised exchange of information between authorities, covert legal reviews and secret inclusion on no-fly lists are also possible.

Canadian civil rights activists, scholars and authors had sharply criticized the introduction of Law C-51 in June; it could lead to a police state. Hundreds of thousands of Canadians signed petitions or tweeted on # VoteAgainstC51 to try to break the law.

The UN Human Rights Committee advised the Canadian government to rewrite the law so that information gathering in the fight against terrorism does not lead to human rights violations. In addition, there should be monitoring mechanisms in the security authorities and secret services, warned the authors.

The Geneva body consists of 18 international independent experts; It monitors the implementation of human rights in all 168 countries that have signed the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). In addition to the anti-terror law, the country report Canada lists 13 other points of criticism - among other things, it also criticizes the disappearance of indigenous women and girls, the prison conditions and the business practices of Canadian raw materials companies abroad.

However, the recommendations of the United Nations are not legally binding - and the Canadian government is unlikely to revise the law. The spokesman for the Canadian security minister Stephen Blaney reacted adamantly: The country stands by the law, said Jeremy Laurin. The measures are sensible and otherwise coincide with those of allied states. The Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper had classified two fatal incidents in Quebec and Ottawa in October 2014 as terrorist attacks by the "Islamic State" and announced tougher measures.

In fact, several states have reacted to the attacks by the terrorist militia IS and other groups in recent months with stricter anti-terror laws, including Great Britain. On Thursday, the French Constitutional Council also gave the go-ahead for a surveillance law that, among other things, will allow phone tapping and the use of hidden cameras without judicial approval.