Bogus Parliament Hill bomb tip targeted organizers of Sikh demonstration: sources

The bogus Parliament Hill bomb threat targeted organizers of a Sikh rally planned for Saturday, with four law enforcement sources telling Global News the tip was related to “Sikh extremism.”

Manveer Singh and Parminder Singh, two organizers of an event to commemorate the 1984 massacre of Sikhs in India, were the two suspects detained after police received what they believed to be “credible” information of explosives in vehicles near the parliamentary precinct.

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Parliament Hill explosives scare appears based on a bad tip: sources

The two were later released without charge, and two sources said law enforcement does not believe they were national security threats.

Sources told Global News Saturday night that a “major” national security investigation was underway, and that it related to “Sikh extremists.”

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But two public safety sources admitted on Sunday that there were no explosives found in the vehicles – one at the busy intersection of Slater and Metcalfe streets, the other outside the Supreme Court building – and that there was no threat to the public.

The biggest question now is who called in the explosives tip – which sources said was very detailed, including photos and license plate numbers – and why.


Click to play video: 'Parliament Hill closed as police operation underway to deal with ‘possible threat’'







Parliament Hill closed as police operation underway to deal with ‘possible threat’


Parliament Hill closed as police operation underway to deal with ‘possible threat’

The two men were part of an organizing committee for a “remembrance rally” put on by the United Front of Sikhs in Canada to commemorate the deaths of Sikhs in India amid political and civil unrest in June 1984.

The planned rally was disrupted after someone tipped off law enforcement of possible explosives near Parliament Hill.

Emergency call logs reviewed by Global News suggest police detained one suspect at Slater and Metcalfe streets at 1:42 p.m., and set up a perimeter around a vehicle. Just over an hour later, the first vehicle was cleared before police were warned about a second vehicle near the Supreme Court. By 3:33 p.m., both vehicles had been cleared and no threat to the public was found.

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“Following an investigation, no public safety threat was identified. At about 4 p.m. the area was cleared,” the Ottawa Police Service wrote in a social media post Saturday evening.

The Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS), which is responsible for gathering intelligence about national security threats within Canada, told Global News they had no information related to the explosives scare.

According to the Canadian Press, Parminder Singh said police apologized after they released him, and suggested they were acting on bad information.

Global News reported Saturday that the initial intelligence came from the Canada Border Services Agency, who refused to confirm or deny their involvement in the investigation.

There are now questions within Canada’s security and intelligence community about the providence of the intelligence and how it was handled.

Correction: This article has been updated to clarify the purpose of the rally.

With files from the Canadian Press.

 

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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