NEWS

Parliament Hill attack: Security measures heightened across Canada

10/22/2014 01:07 EDT | Updated 12/22/2014 05:59 EST
Canada is on heightened alert Wednesday as shootings in Ottawa prompted tighter security measures across the country.

Most official institutions reported heightened security protocols and were closely monitoring the situation, but none had reported any known threats outside Ottawa. 

Some Canadian Forces bases were locked down in response to the shooting, while others were monitoring the situation with heightened security. 

Soldiers asked to stop wearing uniform

The Canadian military is asking its military to stop wearing their uniforms outside bases, except for operational reasons. Military personnel in uniform are being asked not to make any stops — not even at gas stations, daycares, schools and elsewhere — while travelling between their base and home.

The Royal Canadian Legion in Windsor told CBC News that the shooting incident has them rethinking the security of poppy sellers this remembrance season.

Airports reported that flights were continuing as usual, but that the situation was being monitored closely.

A spokesperson for the Customs and Immigration Union said the union is seeking more information about the shooting and waiting to hear from the Canada Border Services Agency about any heightened security measures at the Ambassador Bridge and Detroit-Windsor Tunnel, both of which connect Windsor, Ont., to Detroit.

In Quebec, the National Assembly and Montreal City Hall increased their security measures.

In New Brunswick, the legislature in Fredericton is closed to the public. 

The Nova Scotia Legislature was locked down, but daily proceedings continue. In Halifax, families were on edge after hearing news of the shooting, expressing concern about their loved ones in uniform. 

In Toronto, police provided extra security at the Ontario Legislature. 

"Out of precaution for the ongoing situation in Ottawa, Toronto Police Service is exercising diligence in offering additional resources" at Queen's Park, police said in a statement. 

"The Deputy Mayor has worked closely with City Manager, Joe Pennachetti and Chief of Police Bill Blair throughout the day to ensure that all security measures and protocols are being followed. It is important to be vigilant and any unusual activity should be immediately reported to the Toronto Police Service," Toronto Deputy Mayor Norm Kelly said in a statement. 

Harper's events cancelled

Prime Minister Stephen Harper's events are cancelled in Toronto today. Harper had been scheduled to attend a ceremony to bestow honorary Canadian citizenship to Malala Yousafzai, Pakistani teenager and co-winner of this year's Nobel Peace Prize.

Security has been heightened at the Saskatchewan Legislature. Premier Brad Wall said dogs will sweep the building and any outdoor ceremonies will be moved indoors. With the speech from the throne being read this afternoon, hundreds of guests are arriving. The government said every consideration is being given to their safety.

All NDP MP constituency offices across the country are closed today in accordance with security directives from Ottawa.

In the Kitchener-Waterloo region in Ontario, Guelph MPs reported they are safe after the shootings.

Extra security measures were put in place in B.C. Wednesday. In Victoria, no tourists or members of the public are being permitted to enter the B.C. legislature, which has stationed extra guards at each entrance.

A Prince Edward Island senator and MPs are among hundreds locked down on Parliament Hill, but all P.E.I. federal representatives have been accounted for. 

Security at the Alberta legislature was at normal levels on Wednesday following the shootings in Ottawa, but tours have been cancelled for the day.

Extra security was reported at the Canadian consulate in New York City.

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