Royal Canadian Mounted Police

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News Article | May 3, 2017
Site: motherboard.vice.com

For nearly three years, our colleague and friend Ben Makuch has had the full weight of Canada's intelligence agencies, federal government, and court systems bearing down on him for the crime of committing journalism. While the Canadian editor of Motherboard, Ben interviewed Farah Mohamed Shirdon, who joined ISIS and burnt his Canadian passport on YouTube in 2014. The interview provided an early look at the motivations of one of a still-growing number of Western-born people who left Canada, the United States, or the United Kingdom to join the Islamic State. It was, by any standard, an insightful piece of reporting that helped our audience understand a mysterious and frightening enemy. Soon after the articles ran, agents for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police showed up at VICE's Toronto office and demanded that Ben turn over all communications he had with Shirdon (which the Kik messaging service deletes as soon as they are delivered), as well as notes and emails exchanged between Ben, who now is a reporter with VICE News, and Motherboard editorial staff. The request was made under a top-secret gag order; for nine months, Ben couldn't tell his colleagues, family, or friends that the Canadian government intended to turn him into an investigative arm for its top federal police agency. At every turn of Ben's saga, the RCMP under the Stephen Harper and Justin Trudeau administrations have undermined the role of a free press in a democratic society. Ben's case is unique, even compared to other instances where governments have interfered with the journalistic process in an attempt to reveal the identity of an anonymous source. In his reporting, Ben both identified his source and quoted him extensively; the RCMP has already gotten a wealth of information about Shirdon simply because Ben published his work on Motherboard. Ben and VICE Media have refused to turn over full transcripts of his communications. To do so would undermine our journalists' credibility with the sources we regularly use to do our jobs, as well as put the safety of our sources and journalists at risk. It is appalling to see the Canadian government engage in a misguided fishing expedition masquerading as an essential fight in the War on Terror. The Canadian government is attempting to make Ben—a journalist who often reports on the ground from war-torn nations—serve as a de-facto spy against ISIS, which has a long history of brutally murdering journalists. To be clear, the Canadian government continues to pursue Ben for doing his job. Last month, an appeals court ruled that he must turn over his chats to the RCMP. VICE Media and Ben have vowed to appeal the decision to Canada's Supreme Court. The investigation has already had a demonstrable effect on Ben's ability to do his job. His sources are more skittish because of the perception that journalists could be used as government agents: "Shirdon would have never spoken to me if he thought I was a cop or a spy," he said. This attempt to use journalists as an investigative arm of the government and an at-will extension of its intelligence agencies is diametrically opposed to the principles of an open and free society. The fervor with which the government has pursued Ben's communications is unconscionable. While Ben's case has been widely covered in Canada, it has flown under the radar of the Trump-obsessed American press. But what happened with Ben is part of a global trend to prevent the free spread of information by governments that espouse democratic values and supposedly champion an open society. Strategies for mass surveillance and thwarting encryption have already expanded bit by bit across the so-called Five Eyes nations. Now, considering each of those governments has shown increasing antagonism toward free and open journalism, Ben's case stands as a warning for what's to come. Trudeau has won praise in the US for his rhetoric that positions Canada as a global model of progressive democracy as the rest of the world heads toward conservative nationalism. It's ironic, then, that despite Donald Trump's saber rattling, the First Amendment and an imperfect patchwork of state shield laws have conferred greater protection to journalists in the US than a so-called progressive leader in Canada has. Americans should not take these protections to be absolute, however. When both sides of the aisle agree that press freedom is not a guaranteed right, journalists and the public they inform will suffer. The broad subpoena powers given to the federal government in cases involving national security means that governments are rarely punished for testing the limits of their power. Barack Obama's administration charged more whistleblowers with violating the Espionage Act than any other administration in history. Meanwhile, Obama's Department of Justice secretly spied on Associated Press reporters while simultaneously whining about encryption and internet privacy as major barriers to national security. New York Times journalist Judith Miller was jailed for 85 days by the George W. Bush administration for refusing to cooperate with a Department of Justice investigation into CIA leakers, and her colleague, James Risen, fought a seven year legal battle with the Bush and Obama administrations to avoid having to disclose a source. Their cases show that American reporters can and will be silenced, threatened, and prosecuted if the federal government takes offense to their reporting. Now we have Donald Trump, a president who has declared the media the "enemy of the people" and has no qualms about eroding civil liberties in the name of security should frighten anyone who believes that journalists should report in the public interest. As corporations become increasingly tight-lipped, government scientists are muzzled, and official government statements contain outright lies, reporters have been forced to rely on brave people willing to leak, give context to, and speak about corporate and government malfeasance. Protecting these sources means using encrypted and secure lines of communication, scrubbing metadata from documents, and, most of all, not identifying them to law enforcement or the federal government. Burning a source can result in them being fired, arrested, or put in harm's way. Without that trust, there is no journalism. Case by case, this is how the free press dies.


News Article | May 1, 2017
Site: www.marketwired.com

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - May 1, 2017) - Following the government's announcement earlier this year that civilian members of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) will be deemed to be appointed under the Public Service Employment Act (PSEA) in April 2018, the Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada (PIPSC) has submitted an application to the Public Service Labour Relations and Employment Board (PSLREB) to become the bargaining agent for some 1360 of these employees whose primary duties fall within one of the bargaining units for which PIPSC is the certified bargaining agent. This would allow these RCMP employees to protected by a union and to have official representatives working on their behalf as soon as possible. While there are some differences between the terms and conditions of employment for civilian RCMP members and their counterparts in the federal public service, PIPSC has taken steps to ensure its future members' rights are protected and terms and conditions preserved as they transition into the public service. "We look forward to welcoming these new members into our community of dedicated professionals who serve Canadians every day. We believe we will be stronger together", said PIPSC President Debi Daviau. "Our goal is to ensure that they maintain their current terms and conditions of employment and that the deeming process goes as smoothly as possible as they transition to occupational groups represented by the Institute". The Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada represents some 55,000 professionals across Canada's federal and provincial public sectors. Follow us on Facebook and on Twitter (@pipsc_ipfpc).


PSP Investments' growing local team will focus on high-quality, long-term investments predominantly in the Private Equity, Private Debt, Infrastructure and Real Estate asset classes.  The team has deep industry knowledge and a diversified skill set. It will combine long-term capital, with financially oriented insight from our partners and management teams, to form strategic industry specialized investment platforms across Europe. In the last year alone, the team has made significant acquisitions, in line with its mandate to continue to increase PSP Investments' exposure in the European market. "PSP Investments' vision is to be a leading global institutional investor that delivers on its risk-return objective by driving a total fund perspective," said André Bourbonnais, President and CEO of PSP Investments. Establishing a European hub is a strategic milestone for us and demonstrates our confidence and commitment to the region." PSP Investments' has seen numerous successful investments in Europe. These include: Cerba HealthCare, a leading European operator of clinical pathology laboratories (Private Equity); a joint venture with Aviva that includes 12 office buildings in Central London (Real Estate); and AviAlliance, a wholly-owned subsidiary of PSP Investments and one of the world's leading private industrial airport platforms (Infrastructure). In line with its investment strategy, PSP Investments has partnered with numerous top-tier organizations in the region, such as Partners Group, SEGRO European Logistics Partnership, BC Partners, Permira and CVC Capital Partners. The European hub will further enable PSP Investments to capitalize on opportunities while further developing strategic partnerships locally. The European hub currently has a team of 28 professionals. It is located in a PSP Investments' majority owned, newly constructed building located in Victoria at 10 Bressenden Place. The Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments) is one of Canada's largest pension investment managers with C$125.8 billion of net assets under management as at September 30, 2016. It manages a diversified global portfolio composed of investments in public financial markets, private equity, real estate, infrastructure, natural resources and private debt. Established in 1999, PSP Investments manages net contributions to the pension funds of Canada's federal Public Service, the Canadian Armed Forces, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Reserve Force. Headquartered in Ottawa, Canada, PSP Investments has its principal business office in Montréal and offices in New York and London, its European hub. For more information, visit http://www.investpsp.com, Twitter @InvestPSP or LinkedIn. Simon Marc, Managing Director of Private Equity, has over 20 years of sector experience having previously worked for top-tier private equity firms in both Paris and London before joining PSP Investments in 2015. Oliver Duff, Managing Director of Principal Debt and Credit Investments, has over 20 years of experience in leverage finance, with a strong track record of building relationships with syndicate desks, private equity firms and credit funds in European markets. Patrick Charbonneau, Managing Director of Infrastructure Investments, has over 15 years of experience in the infrastructure sector.  Prior to joining PSP Investments in 2006, he worked in infrastructure advisory services for a global accounting firm. Stéphane Jalbert, Managing Director of Real Estate Investments, is responsible for real estate investment activities in the UK and Europe. Having joined PSP Investments in 2009, Stéphane has over 20 years of global real estate investment management experience.


The Government of Canada tabled a motion today to move forward with Bill C-7, legislation to create a new labour relations regime for Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) members and reservists. The Government's motion addresses the Senate's views on Bill C-7 by proposing to increase the scope of issues that can be bargained and accept Senate amendments that remove restrictions on what may be included in collective agreements and arbitral awards that are specific to the RCMP. These amendments will allow the employer and any future RCMP member bargaining agent to engage in meaningful discussions in good faith on topics of importance to RCMP members and reservists, such as harassment, that were excluded from collective bargaining under the original version of Bill C-7. Bill C-7 was drafted following consultations with regular members of the RCMP. The Bill also takes into account the results of engagement undertaken with jurisdictions that have RCMP Police Services Agreements. The Government of Canada will continue to work with Parliament in an open and engaged manner throughout the legislative process. "The Government has considered the Senate's amendments to Bill C-7 and meaningfully addressed their concerns. At the same time, we have ensured the operational integrity of the RCMP as a police service and demonstrated our continued commitment to protecting the safety and security of Canadians." "I thank the Senate members who have helped in the development of this Bill. Their work has given us a better opportunity to improve Canada's RCMP labour relations regime, and to serve the men and women who benefit from it." The Government's proposed response to the Senate would: The legislation continues to include the following elements: - A New Labour Relations Regime for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police - Government of Canada Introduces Legislation to Create a New RCMP Labour Relations Regime Follow us on Twitter at: @TBS_Canada and @Safety_Canada


PSP Investments' growing local team will focus on high-quality, long-term investments predominantly in the Private Equity, Private Debt, Infrastructure and Real Estate asset classes.  The team has deep industry knowledge and a diversified skill set. It will combine long-term capital, with financially oriented insight from our partners and management teams, to form strategic industry specialized investment platforms across Europe. In the last year alone, the team has made significant acquisitions, in line with its mandate to continue to increase PSP Investments' exposure in the European market. "PSP Investments' vision is to be a leading global institutional investor that delivers on its risk-return objective by driving a total fund perspective," said André Bourbonnais, President and CEO of PSP Investments. Establishing a European hub is a strategic milestone for us and demonstrates our confidence and commitment to the region." PSP Investments' has seen numerous successful investments in Europe. These include: Cerba HealthCare, a leading European operator of clinical pathology laboratories (Private Equity); a joint venture with Aviva that includes 12 office buildings in Central London (Real Estate); and AviAlliance, a wholly-owned subsidiary of PSP Investments and one of the world's leading private industrial airport platforms (Infrastructure). In line with its investment strategy, PSP Investments has partnered with numerous top-tier organizations in the region, such as Partners Group, SEGRO European Logistics Partnership, BC Partners, Permira and CVC Capital Partners. The European hub will further enable PSP Investments to capitalize on opportunities while further developing strategic partnerships locally. The European hub currently has a team of 28 professionals. It is located in a PSP Investments' majority owned, newly constructed building located in Victoria at 10 Bressenden Place. The Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments) is one of Canada's largest pension investment managers with C$125.8 billion of net assets under management as at September 30, 2016. It manages a diversified global portfolio composed of investments in public financial markets, private equity, real estate, infrastructure, natural resources and private debt. Established in 1999, PSP Investments manages net contributions to the pension funds of Canada's federal Public Service, the Canadian Armed Forces, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Reserve Force. Headquartered in Ottawa, Canada, PSP Investments has its principal business office in Montréal and offices in New York and London, its European hub. For more information, visit www.investpsp.com, Twitter @InvestPSP or LinkedIn. Simon Marc, Managing Director of Private Equity, has over 20 years of sector experience having previously worked for top-tier private equity firms in both Paris and London before joining PSP Investments in 2015. Oliver Duff, Managing Director of Principal Debt and Credit Investments, has over 20 years of experience in leverage finance, with a strong track record of building relationships with syndicate desks, private equity firms and credit funds in European markets. Patrick Charbonneau, Managing Director of Infrastructure Investments, has over 15 years of experience in the infrastructure sector.  Prior to joining PSP Investments in 2006, he worked in infrastructure advisory services for a global accounting firm. Stéphane Jalbert, Managing Director of Real Estate Investments, is responsible for real estate investment activities in the UK and Europe. Having joined PSP Investments in 2009, he has over 20 years of global real estate investment management experience.


News Article | March 2, 2017
Site: news.yahoo.com

The former border crossing used by refugees as they walk from the United States to enter Canada at Emerson, Manitoba, Canada February 25, 2017. REUTERS/Lyle Stafford OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian and U.S. officials are working on a plan to tackle asylum seekers crossing into Canada illegally, with American officials keen to discover how they entered the United States in the first place, said a source familiar with the matter. U.S. Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly is set to visit Canada this month for talks on the border and the influx of people, said the source, who requested anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter. Hundreds of people, mainly from Africa but also the Middle East, have walked across the border, seeking asylum. They are fleeing President Donald Trump's crackdown on illegal immigrants, migrants and refugees agencies say. It is not common to have so many asylum seekers based in the U.S. looking for refuge in Canada over such a short period. Scott Bardsley, a spokesman for Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale, said the majority of people crossing in recent weeks held valid passports and U.S. visas. The influx poses a political risk for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who faces pressure from the left, which wants him to let more in, and from the right, which fears an increased security risk. He must also ensure the issue does not complicate his relations with Trump. "We are talking with our counterparts in the United States to ensure that we're addressing this situation properly," Trudeau told reporters in Calgary, Alberta. Security experts have said the asylum-seekers could pose a threat if the flow picks up once the weather improves and authorities do not take additional steps. Canadian and U.S. officials speak daily about the border crossers and law enforcement agencies from both nations met in Montreal last month to plot strategies, the source said. The U.S. side asked Canada to provide details of the asylum seekers, in particular, how they had entered the United States and what their status was there. The Montreal summit grouped representatives from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), the Canada Border Services Agency, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency. RCMP spokeswoman Annie Delisle confirmed the meeting took place, and said the two sides agreed on an "action plan which outlines a collaborative approach to dealing with the influx". An official in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security said the crossings were very limited and did not represent a major security concern. "Frankly, it is far more embarrassing to this country than it is threatening," said the official, speaking on the condition of anonymity. The official, and a second person directly involved in border affairs, said U.S. authorities had not mounted a major effort to beef up border security, in part because they lack manpower and equipment. A senior Canadian security source classified the risk as medium- to long-term, since it was likely that those crossing the border really were seeking asylum. Vast stretches of the 5,500-mile (8,900-km) frontier are unguarded and the more images spread of people walking across, the more vulnerable Canada could become, said the source. "If we keep this up for a while, and it becomes known that the border really is porous, then people will use it as an opportunity to put (operatives) in," said the source. Exact numbers are hard to calculate, since not all authorities release details. In January and February, 143 people walked illegally over the border into Manitoba, local police said. As of Feb. 13, some 3,800 people had made an asylum claim in 2017, up from the same period last year, said Bardsley. That number, though, includes all people seeking asylum, and the government would not break down the figures.


News Article | February 15, 2017
Site: www.marketwired.com

Workers at MedReleaf in Markham charge they were terminated because they tried to unionize TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Feb. 10, 2017) - The struggle to win union rights for medical cannabis workers in Canada has entered a new chapter, with the commencement of hearings at Ontario's Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs Appeal Tribunal (AFRAA Tribunal) for workers at MedReleaf in Markham, Ontario. The Markham-based MedReleaf operates an industrial facility with approximately 50 employees who grow, trim, harvest, and package medical grade marijuana. The MedReleaf workers have been trying to join UFCW Canada (United Food and Commercial Workers union) for nearly two years, and are now fighting for their right to unionize and bargain collectively at the tribunal. The MedReleaf struggle first began in May 2015, when workers at the facility contacted UFCW Canada in order to join the union. With a majority of MedReleaf workers having signed union cards, UFCW Canada applied for certification at both the provincial and federal labour boards. Not long after the applications were filed, the federal labour board ruled that it did not have jurisdiction over the matter, despite the fact that medical cannabis production is tightly regulated by Health Canada and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP). Within days of the federal ruling, MedReleaf started terminating the leaders of the union organizing campaign at its facility. UFCW Canada in turn filed charges of unfair labour practices against the company at the Ontario Labour Relations Board. Before the hearings into the charges began, the provincial labour board deemed the workers to be agriculture workers in December 2015, despite the factory-like dynamic of many medical marijuana facilities. Since agriculture workers in Ontario are excluded from the provincial Labour Relations Act, the Board's ruling effectively stripped cannabis workers of the right to unionize and bargain collectively. Soon after the provincial ruling, MedReleaf terminated even more union supporters. To date, 11 union supporters have been terminated by MedReleaf, including all of the leaders who started the organizing campaign. Having been rejected by both the federal and provincial labour boards, the only avenue left for MedReleaf workers is the AFRAA Tribunal. The tribunal is available to any agricultural worker whose right to freedom of association has been violated. However, this is only the second time in history that the concerns of workers seeking to bargain collectively have been heard by the tribunal. Now, nearly two years after the union drive at MedReleaf, the tribunal has commenced twelve days of hearings. The first three days of hearings commenced February 7, and the tribunal will reconvene March 1. Should the tribunal rule in favour of the union, UFCW Canada hopes that the workers will be reinstated with full back-pay, and that the company will be legally obligated to negotiate a collective agreement with the union. It is a long and monumental struggle that will have implications for workers across Canada's burgeoning cannabis sector. "This is about achieving justice for all cannabis workers," says Philip Manorath, one of the leading inside organizers at MedReleaf and the first worker to be terminated following the organizing campaign. "There is no reason why cannabis workers should be denied the right to form a union and bargain collectively, when every other worker in Ontario has the right to do so." UFCW Canada is Canada's leading and most progressive union, representing more than a quarter of a million workers in Canada's fastest growing industries. UFCW Canada is the country's most innovative organization dedicated to building fairness in workplaces and communities. To find out more about UFCW Canada and its innovative work, please visit www.ufcw.ca.


News Article | February 21, 2017
Site: news.yahoo.com

There has been a reported increase in the number of individuals trying to trespass into Canada — several doing so under dangerous and freezing conditions — since President Donald Trump assumed office. Canada Border Services Agency said that it found 22 people illegally crossing the border into the Canadian province of Manitoba this weekend, and in a separate but related incident eight asylum-seekers, including four children, were photographed while they attempted to make their way into the Canadian border. The scene captured in photographs recorded a family parked in a taxi near the Canadian border in Champlain, New York. Four adults and four young children fled the cab toward the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) while a U.S. Customs and Border Patrol officer was questioning a man in the front passenger seat. The family claims that they are Sudanese and had been living and working in Delaware for two years. As they approached them, the RCMP helped lift the children up off the snow and reportedly asked an adult woman if she required any medical care while the man being questioned for verification of his papers by the U.S. officer threw his belongings and luggage into the snow-covered gully that separated them. "Nobody cares about us," he said, according to Reuters. The man then reportedly grabbed their passports, which had been seized by the U.S. officers, before making a run for it. Although the U.S. officer yelled and chased the man, he made it past the border marker and into the hands of the Canadian police. The border patrol police officer reportedly told his Canadian counterpart that he was in the process of detaining the man who was an undocumented immigrant in the United States. He then passed the luggage to the RCMP, which carried the articles, along with the people into their vehicles, so that they could be transported to a nearby border office for an interview. A number of individuals have been trying to trespass into Canada and several are doing so under dangerous and freezing conditions. The influx has reportedly increased after President Donald Trump's executive order barring refugees and travelers from seven countries entry into the United States (the order has been now temporarily suspended by a U.S. federal appeals court), and since sweeping raids on undocumented immigrants led to more than 600 arrests from 11 states. The Canada Border Services Agency said that the 22 people who attempted to cross the border this weekend were being processed in accordance with the Canadian law, CNN reported. About 100 people have crossed into a small border town known as Emerson, Manitoba, in just two months, the report added.


News Article | February 19, 2017
Site: news.yahoo.com

Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) officers assist a child from a family that claimed to be from Sudan as they walk across the U.S.-Canada border into Hemmingford, Canada, from Champlain in New York. REUTERS/Christinne Muschi CHAMPLAIN, N.Y. (Reuters) - Nine asylum-seekers, including four children, barely made it across the Canadian border on Friday as a U.S. border patrol officer tried to stop them and a Reuters photographer captured the scene. As a U.S. Customs and Border Patrol officer seized their passports and questioned a man in the front passenger seat of a taxi that had pulled up to the border in Champlain, New York, four adults and four young children fled the cab and ran to Royal Canadian Mounted Police on the other side. One by one they scrambled across the snowy gully separating the two countries. RCMP officers watching from the other side helped them up, lifting the younger children and asking a woman, who leaned on her fellow passenger as she walked, if she needed medical care. The children looked back from where they had come as the U.S. officer held the first man, saying his papers needed to be verified. The man turned to a pile of belongings and heaved pieces of luggage two at a time into the gully -- enormous wheeled suitcases, plastic shopping bags, a black backpack. For more news videos visit Yahoo View, available now on iOS and Android. "Nobody cares about us," he told journalists. He said they were all from Sudan and had been living and working in Delaware for two years. The RCMP declined on Friday to confirm the nationalities of the people. A Reuters photo showed that at least one of their passports was Sudanese. The man then appeared to grab their passports from the U.S. officer before making a run for the border. The officer yelled and gave chase but stopped at the border marker. Canadian police took hold of the man's arm as he crossed. The border patrol officer told his counterpart that the man was in the United States illegally and that he would have detained him. Officers on both sides momentarily eyed the luggage strewn in the snow before the U.S. officer took it, and a walker left on the road, to the border line. The RCMP carried the articles to their vehicles, and the people piled in to be driven to a nearby border office to be interviewed by police and to make a refugee claim. People seeking refugee status have been pouring over the Canada-U.S. border as the United States looks to tighten its policies on refugees and illegal immigrants. Asylum-seekers sneak across because even if they are caught, they can make a claim in Canada; if they make a claim at a border crossing, they are turned away. [L1N1FO1Z8]


News Article | March 3, 2017
Site: news.yahoo.com

The former border crossing used by refugees as they walk from the United States to enter Canada at Emerson, Manitoba, Canada February 25, 2017. Picture taken Febraury 25. REUTERS/Lyle Stafford OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canada sees no signs of a coming surge in asylum seekers illegally crossing the border from the United States, a senior government official told reporters on Thursday, even as a steady stream of people continued to walk across the frontier. Several hundred people, mainly from Africa, have defied winter conditions to enter Canada since Jan. 1. They are fleeing President Donald Trump's crackdown on illegal immigrants, migrants and refugee agencies say. A briefing by Canadian officials was the first of its kind and comes as the Liberal government led by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau comes under increasing domestic political pressure to deal with the influx. Trudeau must also ensure the issue does not complicate his relations with Trump. Security experts predict more will try to come as the snow melts and the weather warms. But officials told the briefing it was too early to say whether a trend was developing and noted the number involved was still very small compared to the roughly 26,000 people who ask for asylum in Canada on average every year. "There is no reason to believe that simply changes in weather patterns is going to lead to (an) increase," said one official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity. As dawn broke on Thursday, Reuters photographer Dario Ayala watched the Royal Canadian Mounted Police arrest a group of five - a man, two women and two children - after they scrambled across a ditch near the Quebec town of Hemmingford, on the border with New York state. The people said they came from Syria. An RCMP officer standing on the Canadian side warned the group they would be detained if they crossed. "Sorry, sorry, we have no choice," said the man. Once in Canada, they were detained, and driven off for processing. Later the same morning, at the same spot, Ayala saw police arrest seven people who said they were from Eritrea. Reuters could not independently verify nationalities of people crossing the border on Thursday. Government officials acknowledge an increase in people seeking asylum this year while insisting they have enough resources to cope. Although no one has yet been charged by the police for illegally crossing the border, all those detained are checked to make sure they do not have convictions for serious crimes. "We are not releasing anyone we have concerns about," another official told the briefing.

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