What to expect when Trudeau testifies on the Emergencies Act on Friday

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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is acceptable to adjacent retired the Public Order Emergencies Commission hearings connected Friday, erstwhile he’ll attest astir his determination to invoke the Emergencies Act to wide retired the “Freedom Convoy” protests earlier this year.

The hearings person been underway for weeks and person heard from dozens of witnesses arsenic portion of its work to analyse Trudeau’s justification for invoking the arguable authorities earlier this year.

Over the people of the inquiry, the committee has heard from instrumentality enforcement, residents of the metropolis of Ottawa, organizers of the “Freedom Convoy” protest, quality officials and galore politicians. The enquiry has grown heated astatine times — a spectator and a lawyer were both, successful abstracted instances, booted from the room.

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The culmination of the grounds to day comes arsenic the premier minister, who announced the determination to invoke the Emergencies Act connected Feb. 14, volition look questions astir his determination connected Friday.

Here’s what you tin expect.

What was Trudeau advised to do?

A important infinitesimal successful the enquiry to day came erstwhile the manager of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) David Vigneault testified that helium had advised Trudeau to invoke the Emergencies Act.

The lawyer representing the convoy organizers, Brendan Miller, had spent astir each time until that infinitesimal asking astir whether the convoy met the CSIS Act’s explanation of a menace to nationalist security, which is the explanation utilized successful the Emergencies Act.

Vigneault confirmed during his grounds that the convoy did not conscionable the CSIS Act threshold — but that helium nevertheless advised Trudeau to invoke the act.

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 'CSIS caput  urged Trudeau to invoke Emergencies Act during convoy, enquiry  hears'

2:08 CSIS caput urged Trudeau to invoke Emergencies Act during convoy, enquiry hears

Commission counsel asked if they were close successful knowing Vigneault’s enactment of reasoning astatine the time, that “if you instrumentality a broader explanation and past look much broadly, you travel up with the proposal you gave to the premier curate of your content that it was required to invoke the act.”

Vigneault added, “Yes, that’s precisely it.”

Trudeau volition apt beryllium pressed astir this recommendation, arsenic good arsenic immoderate others helium mightiness person received, specified arsenic from his nationalist information advisor Jody Thomas, that led him to invoke the act.

Was the convoy a nationalist information threat?

The Emergencies Act was intended arsenic a much restrained portion of exigency authorities than the 1 it replaced — the War Measures Act. As portion of that, determination are strict criteria for the circumstances erstwhile its powers tin beryllium used.

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Trudeau tin expect to look extended questions astir whether the “Freedom Convoy” met that criteria.

To suffice arsenic a nationalist bid emergency, a concern indispensable conscionable the explanation of “threats to the information of Canada” arsenic outlined successful the Canadian Security Intelligence Service Act — the enactment that regulates the powers of the country’s quality agency.

There are 4 imaginable scenarios that conscionable the explanation of “threats to the information of Canada” nether the act. “Lawful” protests don’t qualify.

Espionage oregon sabotage against Canada oregon detrimental to the country’s interestsForeign influenced activities, successful oregon related to Canada, that are detrimental to the country’s interest, are clandestine oregon deceptive, oregon endanger peopleActivities successful oregon related to Canada that threaten, nonstop oregon usage acts of superior unit against radical oregon spot to execute a political, ideological oregon spiritual nonsubjective successful Canada oregon a overseas stateActivities directed toward undermining by covert unlawful acts, oregon directed toward oregon intended yet to pb to the demolition oregon overthrow by unit of, the constitutionally established strategy of authorities successful Canada.

The authorities formally laid retired its rationale for invoking the Emergencies Act successful an enforcement bid successful February. The authorities argued the blockades were an emergency, and those progressive had vowed to propulsion backmost astatine efforts to wide them, which officials believed progressive plans to usage “serious violence” for “a governmental oregon ideological objective.”

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Because the caput of Canada’s spy bureau said the convoy didn’t suffice arsenic a menace to nationalist information arsenic defined successful the CSIS Act — but that helium believed it posed a broader menace that “required” invocation — Trudeau volition apt beryllium pressed for much details connected however helium weighed those concerns.

Threats to the premier curate during the 'Freedom Convoy'

Trudeau could besides expect questions astir his idiosyncratic information during the demonstrations.

Law enforcement raised concerns protesters would try to find the premier curate arsenic they took to the streets of Ottawa, according to assessments from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), which were tabled arsenic grounds during the Emergencies Act inquiry.

“It is imaginable protesters volition question to place wherever the premier curate is, based connected his itinerary oregon immoderate unfastened root accusation posting his location,” the papers says.

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“The imaginable for immoderate individuals progressive successful the convoy to be the premier minister’s location, should it beryllium a tenable region to travel, is imaginable should his determination beryllium publicized.”

 What has happened truthful  acold   up  of last  week'

2:28 Emergencies Act inquiry: What has happened truthful acold up of last week

Once protesters arrived successful ample numbers, Trudeau and his household were yet moved to an undisclosed determination for information reasons.

“We were acrophobic astir whether oregon not the blockade mightiness people the premier minister,” Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino testified connected Tuesday.

He said determination were “overtly transgression threats” being made “against the lives and the information and information of identifiable nationalist figures.”

It’s imaginable Trudeau could beryllium pressed astir his acquisition with these threats, arsenic good arsenic asked for much item astir what measures were taken successful effect to the risks.

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Potential for politicization

What remains to beryllium seen is however governmental tensions could flare connected Friday.

The archetypal fractional of immoderate fixed witness’s quality is allotted to ineligible counsel for the commission, portion the second fractional is unfastened to parties granted lasting successful the enquiry — a radical that includes provincial governments, advocacy groups and the protestation organizers.

Commissioner Paul Rouleau has often reminded the parties to support civility during the inquiry. So far, 1 assemblage subordinate and 1 lawyer person been booted from the country — though their qualms were mostly directed astatine the proceeding itself, alternatively than a circumstantial witness.

Nonetheless, the enquiry sent retired a reminder for anyone readying to be Friday’s proceedings successful person.

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“Commissioner Rouleau expects that each participants volition support the decorum of the hearings and that the behaviour of everyone successful the proceeding country volition proceed to beryllium respectful astatine each times,” it said.

— with files from The Canadian Press

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