OTTAWA, Feb. 6, 2019 /CNW/ - The National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians (NSICOP) today announces four reviews of government national security and intelligence activities for 2019.
The Committee's first review will examine the threat to Canada's national security posed by foreign interference and the measures in place to counter it. Canada, like most other Western democracies, is vulnerable to foreign actors seeking to illegitimately influence or interfere in our political and economic processes.
NSICOP also will examine the national security and intelligence activities of the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA). The CBSA conducts national security and intelligence activities to support the enforcement and administration of Canada's immigration and customs legislation and exchanges intelligence with government departments, foreign partner states and stakeholders.
The Committee's third review will study issues of diversity and inclusion in Canada's security and intelligence community. Starting in 2019, it will track the community's progress in these areas over the next three years, and meet with security and intelligence officials to identify best practices and areas for improvement.
The Committee will also undertake a fourth review of the collection, use, retention and dissemination of information on Canadian citizens by the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces (DND/CAF) in the conduct of defence intelligence activities. It will submit its findings and recommendations in a Special Report to the Prime Minister and the Minister of National Defence in 2019.
"Our planned reviews for 2019 will continue to build a picture of the various parts of the security and intelligence community and how it works together to protect our security, our freedoms and our institutions," noted the Chair of NSICOP, The Hon. David McGuinty.
On Dec. 21, 2018, the Committee delivered its first Annual Report to the Prime Minister. A declassified version of the Report must be tabled in Parliament within 30 sitting days.
Background: NSICOP was established under the National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians Act on June 22, 2017. NSICOP serves as an independent, high-level review body of Canada's national security and intelligence organizations. It may review:
- the legislative, regulatory, policy, administrative and financial framework for national security and intelligence;
- any activity carried out by a department that relates to national security or intelligence, unless the activity is an ongoing operation and the appropriate Minister determines that the review would be injurious to national security;
- any matter relating to national security or intelligence that a minister of the Crown refers to NSICOP.
NSICOP must submit an annual report to the Prime Minister that includes the reviews conducted in the preceding year. It may also complete a Special Report on any matter related to its mandate, at any time. The Prime Minister causes NSICOP's reports to be tabled in both Houses of Parliament, which are then referred to the appropriate Senate and House of Commons committees.
NSICOP members hold the highest level of security clearance, are bound by the Security of Information Act and meet in private.
- National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians website: www.nsicop-cpsnr.ca
- National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians Act: https://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/N-16.6/FullText.html
SOURCE Secretariat to the National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians
For further information: Rennie Marcoux, Executive Director, National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians, (613) 294-0572, [email protected]