Canadian spy accused of smuggling Shamima Begum to Syria, Trudeau vows 'proper oversight'
Following the revelation that an informant for the Canadian intelligence agency was acting as a double agent when he facilitated the 2015 passage of British teenager Shamima Begum to live among Islamic State in Syria, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has vowed a ''proper oversight''.
During a press conference on Thursday, Trudeau told reporters that agents observe rigorous rules in handling their informants.
Highlighting that intelligence work can be a messy business, Trudeau said it requires both flexibility and creativity on the part of covert government agents.
British teenagers Kadiza Sultana, Amira Abase and Shamima Begum, who were school friends, fled the country to join IS jihadists.
They were captured in security footage when they were passing through security barriers at Gatwick Airport to fly to Istanbul when they apparently met an interlocutor at a bus station.
While maintaining separate activities to smuggle individuals to Islamic State, interlocutor Mohammed Al Rasheed was providing intelligence information to the Canadian government.
According to a book 'The Secret History of the Five Eyes' by Richard Kerbaj, two officials from the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) met the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) head of counter-terrorism Richard Walton after Begum's disappearance.
During an interview for the book, Walton said “If you are running agents, you are acquiescing in what they are doing.”
In 2019, Britain revoked Begum's citizenship saying she was a danger to the country's public and that she had aligned with IS because she had remained on the group’s territory.
Arguing that Begum was trafficked out of the country, her family’s lawyer Tasnime Akunjee is due to make a fresh case at the special immigration appeals commission in November.
Citing its policy on “operational intelligence or security matters”, the British government has declined to comment on the CSIS revelations.