EDITOR’S NOTE: An earlier version of this story quoted McKay as saying “damn states.” This was incorrect and based on a problem with the sound quality of the recording of his comments. A closer examination of the audio indicates that he said “vassal states.” The story has been updated to reflect this misinterpretation.

The Chinese The government represents an “existential threat” to Canada, says a Liberal MP amid a new report from Global News to Beijing’s suspects foreign interference efforts.

Scarborough-Guildwood MP John McKay made the comments to reporters in Ottawa on Wednesday following the publication of the Global News article indicating two high-level national security reports before and after the 2019 election suggest senior government officials were warned about Chinese government officials running money. to Canadian political candidates.

“The government of China is an existential threat to Canada on a multitude of levels,” McKay said.

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“We as a nation must come to terms with the Chinese government’s desire to turn us all into vassal states.”

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Two high-level memos allege Beijing secretly funded Canadian election candidates

The two intelligence reports, from 2019 and 2022, that Global News reported on Wednesday raise new questions about what senior federal officials knew about the alleged funding of a foreign interference network and how seriously Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government took the warnings.

One is a “special report” prepared by the Privy Council Office for the Trudeau government and was date-stamped January 2022. The memo was also finalized, suggesting it was intended to be read by Trudeau and his senior aides.

Reviewed by Global News, it alleged that Chinese officials in Toronto had paid money to a secret network tasked with meddling in Canada’s 2019 election.

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Liberal MP allegedly tied to Chinese meddling: sources

Global News also learned of an earlier high-level warning about covert funding of China’s “preferred candidates” that came from a bipartisan panel of parliamentarians two months before the 2019 election.

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The information came from Canada’s national security and intelligence committee of parliamentarians, which reviews national security issues and promotes “whole-of-government accountability.”

It was established by Trudeau in 2017 and reports to the Prime Minister.

This is the same panel that Trudeau appointed Monday with a mandate to investigate allegations of Chinese election interference that Global first reported in November.

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Who will be Ottawa’s Interference Rapporteur? Opposition welcome to put up name: Trudeau

Asked about the report Wednesday, Trudeau repeated his government’s announcement Monday to launch several investigations and create a “special rapporteur” tasked with overseeing them.

“No matter what I say, Canadians continue to have questions about what we did and what we didn’t do,” he said.

“That’s why an independent special rapporteur will be able to look at the whole landscape and dig deep into everything that anybody knew at any point in time and come back.”

That person, who will be named in the near future, will be able to make recommendations including whether a public inquiry, which opposition leaders have called on the government to launch, is warranted.

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The opposition criticizes Trudeau’s plan to investigate foreign interference

The Prime Minister also said on Monday that he spoke to the heads of both the National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliament (NSICOP) and the Independent National Security and Intelligence Agency (NSIRA), urging them to carry out “urgent work” within their mandates to study foreign interference.

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NSICOP includes members of parliament from several parties, as well as a senator. NSIRA, made up of independent experts, is tasked with reviewing the actions of Canada’s intelligence agencies.

Both NSICOP and NSIRA are given access to classified and top secret intelligence information, preventing them from carrying out their work in public. NSICOP submits a report of its work which then goes to the Prime Minister’s Office, which can edit any information in the report before it is tabled in the House of Commons. NSIRA will also provide a public report on its assessments of the actions taken by government agencies that handle intelligence on the issue of foreign interference.

The government is also launching public consultation on setting up a new public register of agents working on behalf of foreign states, similar to those established in Australia, the UK and the US.

— with files from Sam Cooper

© 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.