Blaney in France to discuss 'challenge of extremism' after Paris attacks
Published Saturday, January 10, 2015 10:34AM EST
Last Updated Saturday, January 10, 2015 12:57PM EST
PARIS -- Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney laid a wreath Saturday at the headquarters of the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, where a dozen people were killed in a terror attack this week, ahead of Sunday's unity rally and march in Paris.
Blaney told reporters he was there to show the support of Canadians for the French people, and to hold talks on the fight against terror.
He said the attack on the paper was an attack on liberty and freedom of expression.
"We are still standing by the French in these difficult hours," Blaney said. "We are resolved more than ever to stand up for those values that unite us."
Blaney will represent Canada at a unity rally Sunday in Paris, where British Prime Minister David Cameron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other European leaders will join French President Francois Hollande.
Michel Robitaille, Quebec's delegate-general in the French capital, will attend on behalf of the province.
Three attackers were among those killed after three days of bloodshed at the newspaper, a kosher supermarket and other sites around Paris that also left four hostages dead. Police continue to search for a woman described as an accomplice.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper has spoken with Hollande to offer Canada's condolences on the brutal attacks.
Blaney said he met with the CSIS head of mission in Paris, will meet Sunday with his French counterpart and that Canada is also working with its other partners.
"We are working at an increased partnership in fighting against terrorists and more specifically foreign fighters," he said.
"There is a constant partnership and sharing of information but also sharing of technical expertise so that we are better able to track and use technology to make sure we know if those individuals have other links and other related involvements."
He said the government intends to ensure authorities have all the tools they need in the fight against terrorism.
Blaney said the arrest of two brothers in Ottawa on terror charges was not connected to the Paris attacks.