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January 12, 2021 » Today News » /

Canada considers adding Proud Boys to terrorist list alongside Islamic State and al-Qaeda

Canada considers adding Proud Boys to terrorist list alongside Islamic State and al-Qaeda


  • LLL-GFATF-Al-Qaeda Al-Qaeda Al-Qaeda is a global militant Islamist organization founded by Osama bin...[+]
  • LLL-GFATF-ISIS Islamic State ISIS is an Islamic extremist terrorist organization controlling territory in Iraq...[+]

 Affected Countries: canada; united-states;

Canadian officials are considering designating the far-right Proud Boys as a terrorist organization alongside groups like Boko Haram, Isis and al-Qaida, following their role in the mob attack on the US Capitol last week.

Canada’s public safety minister said his office was closely watching the Proud Boys and the “ideologically-motivated violent extremists” within the group.

“They are white supremacists, antisemitics, Islamophobic, misogynist groups. They’re all hateful, they’re all dangerous,” the public safety minister, Bill Blair, told CTV News over the weekend. “We’re working very diligently to ensure that where the evidence is available, where we have the intelligence, that we’ll deal appropriately with those organizations.”

The minister’s office has not said when a determination on the group’s status as a terror group will be made.

Calls for a terrorist designation were first made last week by Jagmeet Singh, leader of the New Democratic party, who accused the Proud Boys of helping to execute “an act of domestic terrorism” when members of the group stormed the Capitol.

“Their founder is Canadian. They operate in Canada, right now,” tweeted Singh.

The Proud Boys were founded in 2016 by the Canadian Gavin McInnes, a co-founder of Vice magazine. The group first made headlines in Canada three years ago, after five military reservists, dressed in the group’s black and yellow shirts, disrupted a protest by the Indigenous community over a controversial statue.

The group was banned by Facebook and Instagram in October 2018 after violating the platforms’ hate policies and is classified as an extremist organization by the FBI.

In the years since, the group has become a central figure in the violent white supremacist movement in US – and members view Donald Trump as a key ally. During the presidential debates, when Trump was asked to condemn white supremacist groups, he instead told the Proud Boys to “stand back and stand by”.

A terrorist designation in Canada would mean that the group’s assets could be seized or forfeited by Canadian authorities, although the group is unlikely to have large, hidden assets.

But the follow-on effects could be more significant, said one former intelligence analyst.

“Banks and companies like PayPal will probably not want to do business with anyone who has been outed as being a member of the Proud Boys. These kind of companies are pretty risk averse,” said Jessica Davis, a terrorism expert and former analyst with the Canadian Security Intelligence Service.

In 2019, the Canadian government added two neo-Nazi groups, Blood & Honour and Combat 18, to its terrorism list – indicating it sees a growing threat from far-right organizations.

Source: The Guardian