OTTAWA (Reuters) - The Canadian official who oversees the country’s spies says Ottawa may have to rethink how it provides intelligence to the United States, given incoming President Donald Trump’s views on torture, a newspaper reported on Thursday.
Canada is a member of the so-called Five Eyes intelligence-sharing network, including the United States, Britain, Australia and New Zealand.
Michael Doucet, executive director of the Security Intelligence Review Committee (SIRC), said Canada did not want information derived from torture.
“They may have a new administration that thinks torture is a good thing,” he told a private Toronto audience last week, according to The Globe and Mail, which cited a recording of the remarks. “It’s going to be an interesting and challenging time, and we’ve got to think about what defines us as Canadians.”
SIRC is a watchdog agency that reviews the activities of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, or CSIS.
During the election campaign, Trump said the United States should use waterboarding and other harsh interrogation techniques when questioning terror suspects.
Neither SIRC nor CSIS was immediately available to comment.
Doucet also said if whistleblower Edward Snowden were Canadian “he should be shot,” although Canada does not have the death penalty. But Doucet added that he was being provocative and actually wanted to see Snowden put on trial.
Snowden revealed a vast amount of metadata by the U.S. National Security Agency in 2013 and now lives in Russia.
“If he really cared about the U.S., the U.S. system... he would not have released so much information that would have placed Americans, allies and others in risk of harm,” said Doucet.
Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by Dan Grebler