OTTAWA, KOMPAS.com- Prime Minister (PM) Justin Trudeau has accused China of aggressively interfering in Canadian elections, playing with democracy and targeting the country’s institutions.
The allegations add to local media reports that Canadian intelligence has identified a “secret network” of Beijing-backed candidates in recent elections.
According to officials’ reports to Trudeau, at least 11 candidates were backed by China in the 2019 federal election.
local media World News citing an unnamed intelligence official, reporting that Beijing distributes funds to candidates and that Chinese agents act as campaign advisers for many candidates.
In one case, funding of $250,000 was channeled to the office of provincial parliamentarians based in Ontario.
According to the newspaper, the operation was orchestrated from the Chinese consulate in Toronto and aimed to place agents from Beijing in the offices of the outgoing lawmaker. The goal is to influence policy.
Efforts were also made to “assimilate and influence” former Canadian officials in an effort to gain influence in political circles.
The attempted interference reportedly targeted both major political parties – Trudeau’s Liberal party and the opposition Conservative party. However, it is unclear whether the operation was successful.
Chinese officials in Canada did not respond to questions from World News on the charges.
“We have taken significant steps to strengthen the integrity of our electoral process and system, and we will continue to invest in the fight against electoral interference, against foreign interference in our democracy and our institutions,” he said. Trudeau told reporters on Monday 2022) as reported BBC.
“Unfortunately, we see countries, state actors around the world, be it China or otherwise, continuing to play an aggressive game with our institutions, with our democracy,” he added.
The report comes after authorities said they were investigating allegations that China opened an unofficial “police” office in Canada.
Last month, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police said it was investigating “criminal activities, in relation to so-called ‘police stations'”, which have also been reported in a number of European countries.
Several European Union countries, including Ireland and the Netherlands, have ordered China to close police stations, which have allegedly been used to pressure opponents of the government to return to China and face criminal charges.
Dutch media have found evidence that so-called overseas gas stations, supposedly providing diplomatic services, have been used in an attempt to silence Chinese dissidents in Europe.
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