For the first time in history, the Government of Canada has officially announced that right-wing extremist groups have been named terrorist organizations that are outlawed from the nation. Two right-wing extremist groups, Blood & Honour and Combat 18 are now considered terrorist organizations under the Government of Canada and are now considered illegal operations. The government is hoping that taking this step will help protect their country and residents from any form of hate attack.
Canada Gazette announced on Wednesday that the Canadian Government will now be criminalizing some right-wing extremist groups as terrorists. The government states that listing these groups as terrorist organizations helps to prosecute supporters and stop terrorism financing.
These two right-wing extremist groups as well as three Shia militant groups, Al-Ashtar Brigades, Harakat al-Sabireen, and the Fatemiyoun Division, were the groups that were added as terrorist organizations this week by the government.
According to Global News, one of the extremist groups which are now considered a terrorist organization, Blood & Honour, has a Canadian branch. Blood & Honour was founded in the United Kingdom in 1987 and has since then established branches throughout Europe and even into Canada.
This extremist group has even launched attacks throughout North America and in 2012 they murdered two homeless men in Flordia because the group considered them 'inferior'.
Combat 18 has also been behind some right-wing extremist attacks, including firebombing a building in the Czech Republic that was occupied by family and children, according to Global News.
When it comes to the Government of Canada adding right-wing extremists to the terrorist organization list, the government states that the definition of extremism is any act of violence that is driven by hate or fear.
The Canadian Security Intelligence Service informed Global News the extremist groups are known to target certain genders, races, religions, and sexual orientation. These extremist groups are also mainly composed of white males.
Global News states that social media is one of the main factors that has allowed these ideologies and extremist groups to spread into Canada. By classifying these two groups as terrorists, the CSIS has 'gained insight into the key players and assess the nature of the current threat environment.'