Canada considers revoking citizenship over terror acts
AP/AFPTORONTO/SOFIA, Bulgaria--Canada's immigration minister said Wednesday his government should consider stripping Canadians with dual citizenship who commit terrorist acts of their Canadian status. The remarks follow revelations that a Canadian with dual Lebanese citizenship is suspected of being involved in a bus attack that killed five Israeli tourists in Bulgaria last year.
February 8, 2013, 12:01 am TWN
Immigration Minister Jason Kenney said that one of the suspects was born in Lebanon, came to Canada at age 8, became a Canadian citizen and then left at age 12. He said he assumed the man was a dual Lebanese-Canadian citizen.
“I understand he may have been back to Canada a few times since then, but he has not has been a habitual resident in Canada since the age of 12,” Kenney said.
A top Bulgarian security official said Wednesday the two living suspects behind the bus attack have been identified and both are now living in Lebanon. The bomb that exploded July 18 as the Israeli tourists were boarding a bus at the airport in Burgas also killed a Bulgarian bus driver and the suspected bomber. Three men are suspected in the attack, including the dead bomber.
On Tuesday, an official Bulgarian report said investigators had “well-grounded reasons to suggest” that two of the suspects belonged to the militant wing of the Islamist group Hezbollah. The report said they had been living in Lebanon for years, one with a Canadian passport and the other with an Australian one.
“The confirmed involvement of a Canadian citizen in the Hezbollah bombing in Bulgaria last year is deeply concerning to us,” Kenney said.
Tuesday's revelation is the second by a foreign government in recent weeks that Canadians allegedly took part in terrorist attacks abroad. Canada has to yet to confirm a claim by Algeria that at least one Canadian was among terrorists who staged a deadly attack on a Saharan gas plant last month. Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird said Tuesday he hasn't even been provided with a name from Algerian authorities.
The bomber who killed five Israelis in Bulgaria last July did not intend to die in the attack, but wanted to return to Lebanon with his two Hezbollah-linked accomplices, the Bulgarian government said Thursday.
The man “was not a kamikaze but only meant to put the ... explosive device in the baggage compartment of the bus and detonate it later from afar,” Interior Minister Tsvetan Tsvetanov said.
Tsvetanov told reporters that remote control equipment found at the scene showed the bomb could have been detonated remotely from around 10 kilometers (six miles) away.
“The damages would have been much bigger then,” Tsvetanov said.