POLITICS

Five things about the Conservative government's planned anti-terror bill

10/16/2014 02:52 EDT | Updated 12/16/2014 05:59 EST
OTTAWA - Five things to know about the Conservative government's forthcoming anti-terror bill:

— It would significantly expand the Canadian Security Intelligence Service's ability to track terror suspects overseas.

— It would give intelligence sources the kind of blanket protection that now applies to police informants, meaning defence counsel and even judges would never have the right to question human sources who provide information on behalf of CSIS in court proceedings.

— The changes could represent the most significant revisions to the CSIS Act since the law's inception in 1984.

— Many questions remain about the shape and extent of the new bill, to be tabled next week. Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney has offered no precise details about the changes, what the revisions would allow the spy service to do that it can't do now, or how sweeping the new source protections would be.

— Defence lawyers and an intelligence expert say they are wary of the plan to extend source protection, saying it could endanger legal fairness.

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