Sunday, December 27, 2009

Public Safety Minister Van Loan and Transport Minister Baird Comment Following Incident on Northwest Flight 253

Public Safety Minister Van Loan and Transport Minister Baird Comment Following Incident on Northwest Flight 253

OTTAWA, ONTARIO - Dec. 26, 2009 - The Honourable Peter Van Loan, Minister of Public Safety, and the Honourable John Baird, Canada's Transport Minister, made the following statement following an aviation threat incident on Northwest Flight 253 from Amsterdam to Detroit.

"Yesterday, I spoke with US Homeland Security Deputy Secretary Jane Lute regarding Friday's aviation threat incident. Security threats to the United States are security threats to Canada. The Canadian government remains fully engaged with the Obama Administration on efforts to combat terrorist threats," said Minister Van Loan. "Our law enforcement and security agencies are committed to working with their US counterparts to secure our borders and protect the safety of our citizens."

Minister Baird has instructed officials with Transport Canada and the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA) to assume a heightened state of vigilance in light of this incident. Passengers travelling by air could experience delays due to increased safety measures and should plan accordingly.

"The safety and security of all Canadians is of the utmost importance to our government," said Minister Baird. "That's why we've taken immediate action and are currently working with our American counterparts to implement all necessary safety and security measures as appropriate to protect Canadian travellers."

While full details of the incident have yet to emerge, both Ministers reiterated the Canadian Government's support for using no-fly lists to increase aviation security and protect the public.

"It is clear that Canada is not immune from incidents of terrorism. Canada has disrupted terrorist plots, and has successively tried and convicted terrorists. We will continue to take the appropriate action to protect the safety and security of Canadians."

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