Canada lawmakers call for broader surveillance bill after court ruling

[JURIST] A number of Canadian politicians are urging the Canadian parliament to pass new legislation aimed at permitting the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) [official website] to conduct surveillance on Canadian citizens outside Canada in the wake of a controversial court ruling [JURIST report] issued Friday which declined to assert jurisdiction over a dispute between CSIS and the Canadian Security Establishment (CSE) [official website] as to whether CSIS could be granted warrants to spy on Canadians overseas. The dispute arose when CSE, the body mandated by Canadian law to monitor foreign communications, declined a CSIS request to conduct surveillance abroad on ten suspected terrorists, nine of whom were Canadian citizens or legal residents of Canada. CSE maintains that current Canadian law does not permit surveillance of Canadian citizens abroad. CSIS took its request to the Federal Court of Canada, which declined to issue the warrants.

In Monday's Toronto Globe & Mail Colin Kenny, head of the Canadian Senate's Committee on National Security and Defence, called for Parliament to draft a law authorizing surveillance of Canadian citizens abroad, saying "it's hugely urgent." The ten terror suspects are already subject to eavesdropping warrants for communications made inside Canada. The Globe & Mail has more.

 

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