Canada Accidentally Released Un-redacted Classified Documents on Its Counterterrorism Plans

Charles Dharapak/AP

Canada’s CN Tower is seen in the background as Marine One carries President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron to Toronto for the G20 Summit, June 26, 2010.

The release of some un-redacted, classified information is prompting some questions in Canada.

Documents obtained by CBC News revealed secret plans that outline Canada’s military response in the event of a terror attack. The material was part of a 2015 briefing given to Canada’s chief of defense staff Sgt. Jonathan Vance, CBC News reported.

The news outlet received the documents through the Access to Information Act, Canada’s version of the US Freedom of Information Act. Though the pages were marked for redaction, CBC reports that its contents were still visible.

The plans detailed Canada’s procedures for responding to a “9/11-style” terrorist attack. One of the safety measures allowed fighter jets to shoot down a hijacked commercial airliner to protect the CN Tower, one of Canada’s largest buildings.

Additionally, the document included who would make such a decision, the number and location of Canadian and US fighter jets on standby, the time it would take to “scramble” the aircraft, and the different rules of engagement.

CBC opted not to disclose portions of the report for national security reasons.

The obtained documents come at a contentious time for the Canadian military, especially after coming under fire for the dozen internal investigations of the “loss or compromise” of classified information, according to CBC. Further, Vice-Admiral Mark Norman, the second-highest military commander in Canada, was suspended in January after being accused of leaking classified information.

“It sounds to me like a mistake was made,” Vance told CBC on Wednesday. “We’ll follow up and try and make certain that this sort of thing doesn’t happen again.”

Source: Business Insider SG