Premier Christy Clark called a thwarted terror plan to bomb the B.C. Legislature on Canada Day "profoundly shocking."
Clark spoke Tuesday in front of the legislature that was the intended target of the Canada Day plot shortly after an RCMP news conference confirmed two suspects, John Stewart Nuttall and Amanda Marie Korody , had been charged with three counts of terrorism-related offences.
The premier said she had been informed of the plot on the morning of Canada Day, as she was headed to Kelowna, where she is running in a byelection in an attempt to regain a seat in the legislature.
"We will not let suspicion darken our hearts, " she told reporters. "Instead we will remain openhearted."
She said the RCMP had assured her that no one was ever at risk.
Assistant Commissioner Wayne Rideout said there was no evidence to suggest the plot was connected to international terrorism, but he said investigators nonetheless believe the threat was real.
"This self-radicalized behaviour was intended to create maximum impact and harm to Canadian citizens at the B.C. legislature on a national holiday," Rideout told a news conference in Surrey, B.C.
"They took steps to educate themselves and produce explosive devices designed to cause injury and death. ... They discussed a wide variety of targets and techniques."
Assistant Commissioner James Malizia said the suspects were inspired by "al-Qaeda ideology," though he said little about the specific motivation for the alleged plot.
"There is no evidence to indicate that these individuals had the support or were acting at the direction of a terrorist group, per se," said Malizia.
Rideout said the RCMP were in control during the investigation and ensured the alleged explosives could not be detonated.
During the news conference, the RCMP displayed photos of three pressure cookers alleged to have been used to construct the bombs.
Nuttall and Korody were arrested in Abbotsford, police said.
With a file from The Canadian Press