Canadians were saddened to learn about the cowardly ISIS-style vehicular ramming that unfolded over the weekend in Edmonton.
We’re used to seeing scenes like this in Europe. Obviously, they’re just as reprehensible when they happen across the Atlantic. But it’s still not a sight we’re used to seeing here.
The scene that unfolded bore eerie resemblances to the 2014 attack in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu that left one Canadian Forces member dead and another injured.
Thankfully, no one was killed this past weekend, but one brave police officer and several bystanders were injured.
On Monday, police announced Abdulahi Hasan Sharif has been charged with five counts of attempted murder, four counts of dangerous driving causing bodily harm, dangerous operation of a motor vehicle and one weapons-related charge. It’s expected terrorism charges will be added to this list later.
Canadians should be relieved injuries are minimal, particularly as we watch our American friends deal with the horrific assault that has left dozens dead and hundreds injured in Las Vegas.
We should also be glad the response on the part of law enforcement and the judiciary has been swift and thorough.
But there’s one glaring problem that is cause for concern. Sharif had, as Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale put it Sunday, “had some appearance on a policy watch list.”
We know Sharif is a Somali national who was granted refugee status in Canada.
Two years ago he was investigated by police on suspicion of, as the Canadian Press reported it, “promoting extremist ideology.”
The RCMP told media that there was no peace bond issued and no further action taken because he was not deemed to present a serious threat to Canada.
We’re not blaming the RCMP for not foreseeing this incident. There are many people who show signs of extremism who do not go on to act on them and there are people who show no signs of it who do commit horrible acts.
The real question is why he wasn’t immediately put on track for deportation. If he espoused an extremist ideology then he stopped being a refugee.
Abdulahi Hasan Sharif is the very type of person refugees are fleeing. He should’ve been sent packing.
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