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Business News/ News / World/  China allegedly influenced Canadian elections: Report

China allegedly influenced Canadian elections: Report

The report was based on documents from Canadian Security Intelligence Service or CSIS.

FILE PHOTO: Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (REUTERS)Premium
FILE PHOTO: Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (REUTERS)

China may have allegedly tried to influence the results of 2021 Canadian Federal elections in favour of the ruling Liberal Party, according to a media reports.

According to investigative article in Globe and Mail by Robert Fife and Steven Chase it said that China employed ‘sophisticated strategy to disrupt Canada’s democracy’ reported Hindustan Times.

 “China employed a sophisticated strategy to disrupt Canada’s democracy in the 2021 federal election campaign as Chinese diplomats and their proxies backed the re-election of Justin Trudeau’s Liberals – but only to another minority government – and worked to defeat Conservative politicians considered to be unfriendly to Beijing," it said.

The report was based on documents from  Canadian Security Intelligence Service or CSIS.

"The intelligence reports show that Beijing was determined that the Conservatives did not win. China employed disinformation campaigns and proxies connected to Chinese-Canadian organizations in Vancouver and the GTA (Greater Toronto Area), which have large mainland Chinese immigrant communities, to voice opposition to the Conservatives and favour the Trudeau Liberals," it said.

A CSIS report cited an unidentified Chinese consulate official as saying, “The Liberal Party of Canada is becoming the only party that the PRC can support." However, Beijing also preferred to restrict the Liberal Party Government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to a minority as it “likes it when the parties in Parliament are fighting with each other, whereas if there is a majority, the party in power can easily implement policies that do not favour the PRC."

It alleged that it had also targeted opposition Conservative Party incumbents Kenny Chiu and Alice Wong in British Columbia and Indo-Canadian Bob Saroya in Ontario, the report said.

Each of them lost in the September 2021 Federal elections, which resulted in the Liberals returning to power with another minority Government, having secured 160 seats as against 119 for the Conservatives.

Among the MPs targeted was also Jenny Kwan of the New Democratic Party or NDP in British Columbia, though she was re-elected. She told the outlet CBC News, “They (the Government) cannot try to shield this information just because it may be that it’s the Liberal who will be benefiting, potentially, from these activities."

Trudeau said on Monday that he has repeatedly noted that China is trying to interfere in Canadian democracy, including its elections. However, he maintained, such interference did not impact the results of the Federal polls. 

However, principal opposition Conservative Party leader Pierre Poilievre obviously disagreed.

“Justin Trudeau knew about this interference, and he covered it up because he benefited from it." Poilievre added, “He’s perfectly happy to let a foreign, authoritarian government interfere in our elections as long as they’re helping him."

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Published: 18 Feb 2023, 09:49 PM IST
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