Pakistan

Pakistani accused of plotting to bomb US consulate in Toronto: officials

OTTAWA: A Pakistani was accused in a deportation hearing on Wednesday of plotting to bomb the US consulate and financial buildings in Toronto.

Jahanzeb Malik, who came to Canada as a student in 2004 and was granted permanent residency five years later, was arrested by a federal police anti-terror squad on Monday.

Rather than file charges, authorities took him before an Immigration and Refugee Board to seek his deportation to Pakistan, officials said.

At the hearing Wednesday, the Canada Border Service Agency (CBSA) alleged that Malik planned “to build remote controlled bombs to blow up the US Consulate and other buildings in the financial district on Toronto.”

He also was alleged to have hoped to make a video of the attack “to encourage others to do the same,” according to a summary of the case provided by the Immigration and Refugee Board.

The CBSA told the board Malik confessed the plot to an undercover Royal Canadian Mounted Police officer and tried to “radicalize” the officer who had befriended him “by showing him videos apparently of ISIL beheadings.”

He also allegedly took weapons, combat and landmine training in Libya, and told the officer he was “a personal friend of Anwar Al-Awlaki, an American citizen and top Al-Qaeda leader in Yemen, who was blown up by a US drone in 2011.”

Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney said outside parliament: “I cannot comment on operational matters but the RCMP has clearly indicated that this individual was willing to commit a terrorist attack on Canadian soil.”

“He was also promoting jihadi ideology,” the minister added.

Determined by the Immigration and Refugee Board to be a security and flight risk, Malik was ordered held pending his deportation. -AFP

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