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ACTION ALERT: Demand that agent provocateurs be ruled out at the G20

The Council of Canadians has written to Prime Minister Stephen Harper to demand his official assurance “that security forces will not use agent provocateurs to incite criminal activity during the upcoming protests of the G8 and G20.”

Council of Canadians chairperson Maude Barlow writes, “I’m deeply concerned that neither you, nor anyone in the government, nor the Integrated Security Unit itself, have ruled out the use of agent provocateurs at the upcoming G8 and G20 summits. Out of control spending on summit costs must not be permitted to develop into out of control suppression of charter rights.”

MONTEBELLO

Barlow adds, “Three undercover police officers attempted to incite violence in 2007 at the Montebello protest against the Security and Prosperity Partnership.  The proof of their actions was caught on film. The Sûreté du Québec was forced to admit that they were police officers, dressed in black and holding rocks. Yet, to date no one has been held accountable and through his silence, Harper appears to have given tacit approval of the use of agents provocateurs. We can only take (the prime minister’s) continued silence on this matter as a tacit admission of intent to use provocateurs to undermine the upcoming protests.”

VIDEO: Police provocateurs at 2007 Montebello SPP protest

POLICE WON’T RULE OUT USE OF AGENT PROVOCATEURS

When asked if agent provocateurs would be used at the summits, Constable George Tucker, a member of the G20 planning team responsible for Public Affairs, Communications & Corporate Relations, responded, “I’m not at liberty to discuss security issues in an open format.”

In a telephone interview with the Toronto Media Co-op, Constable Meghan Gray with the Toronto Police Services G20 Planning Team responsible for Public Affairs, Communications & Community Relations, was also asked directly whether agent provocateurs would be used. She replied, “Like [my co-worker], George Tucker, those are operational issues, I can’t speak to that.”

And when the Vancouver-weekly Georgia Straight asked about the use of agent provocateurs, Corporal Jen Allen of the Integrated Security Unit responded, “We are not in a position to detail a specific operational plan as to how we are going to fulfill that obligation.”

This is both outrageous and unacceptable.

TAKE ACTION

The Council of Canadians is demanding that the Harper government respond to this letter by Monday, June 21. Send your message to the prime minister and tell him that agent provocateurs as we saw in Montebello must not be used in either Huntsville or Toronto. E-mail the prime minister at pm@pm.gc.ca.

UPDATE

The Toronto Star reports this evening that, “The Council of Canadians has written to the prime minister demanding his assurance that security forces won’t use undercover agents to incite criminal activity during the summits.” That’s at http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/torontog20summit/article/824596–labour-plans-peaceful-kid-friendly-g20-protest.

And the Canadians Press reports, “Concerns about police tactics had the Council of Canadians calling on Prime Minister Stephen Harper to make assurances that so-called agent provocateurs will not be used during protests. Quebec provincial police admitted that three of their officers disguised themselves as demonstrators during the protest at the North American leaders summit in Montebello, Que., in 2007. But the force denied the officers were there to instigate violence. ‘The Surete du Quebec was forced to admit that they were police officers, dressed in black and holding rocks,’ Maude Barlow, the council’s chairwoman, writes in a letter to Harper, excerpts of which were released to the media Wednesday. ‘Yet, to date no one has been held accountable and through his silence, Harper appears to have given tacit approval of the use of agents provocateurs.’ Harper’s continued silence can only be taken as an ‘admission of intent to use provocateurs to undermine the upcoming protests,’ the letter reads. The council is ‘demanding’ that the Harper government respond to its letter by Monday.” That report is at http://www.metronews.ca/vancouver/world/article/553534–canadian-labour-congress-organizing-large-demonstration-for-g20-summit–page0.