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What changed? Surely not the Quebec electorate, which, for nearly two decades, voted for the Bloc Québécois, only to lurch en masse toward the lefty NDP in 2011. Rather, by coming out against the wearing of the face-covering niqab during a citizenship oath, which was the subject of a recent court decision, and the threat of another terrorist attack on Canadian soil, Harper hit upon a strain of collective fear in the province—where, as another recent poll suggests, nearly 80 per cent of people are worried about a terrorist attack and the indoctrination of young Quebecers by Islamist extremists.
And what goes for Quebec goes for the country as a whole. The recent threat of an attack on the West Edmonton Mall by Somali-based terrorist group al-Shabaab has only underscored the Canada-wide support for the government’s new anti-terrorism bill, which, according to recent polling numbers, is at nearly 85 per cent.
According to the Daily Sabah newspaper, news of the arrest broke when Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told a television station Thursday that the unidentified suspect “was working for the intelligence service of a country participating in the coalition against ISIS. This country is not the United States or member of the European Union.”
A European security source familiar with the case of the three girls said the person in question had a connection with the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) spy agency.
A Canadian government source in Ottawa said the person was not a Canadian citizen and was not employed by CSIS. The source did not respond when asked whether the person had been working for CSIS.