February 28th, 2024

Foreign interference inquiry to hear public safety minister on navigating secrecy

By The Canadian Press on February 2, 2024.

Minister of Public Safety, Democratic Institutions and Intergovernmental Affairs Dominic LeBlanc rises during Question Period, Thursday, February 1, 2024 in Ottawa. A commission of inquiry into foreign interference will hear from LeBlanc today as it looks for ways to make as much information public as possible. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

OTTAWA – A commission of inquiry into foreign interference will hear from Public Safety Minister Dominic LeBlanc today, as it looks for ways to make as much information public as possible.

Commissioner Marie-Josée Hogue and her counsel will be able to see all of the highly classified materials filed with the inquiry.

But the government has signalled there are obstacles to making some sensitive documents public.

Federal lawyers say the public release of certain intelligence about interference threats from China and others would risk exposing vital secrets.

The discussions on national security and confidentiality of information will help set the stage for the commission’s next public hearings, likely to take place at the end of March.

The March hearings will delve into allegations of foreign interference by China, India, Russia and others in the 2019 and 2021 federal elections, with a report on these matters due May 3.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 2, 2024.

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