MONTREAL — Two Montreal women, ages 18 and 19, were reported missing by their families in November and Canadian authorities believe they have joined Islamic State (ISIS) in Syria.
Both Montrealers are considered high-risk travellers and are being investigated by Canada’s Integrated National Security Enforcement Teams, a source close to the investigation told QMI Agency. The two women are friends.
The Criminal Code bars any Canadian from joining terrorist groups such as ISIS or providing money or assistance of any kind.
At the request of police, QMI Agency isn’t revealing the women’s names to prevent others in their inner circle from becoming radicalized. Police say they have a close relationship with the grieving families.
CSIS overwhelmed with cases of high-risk travellers
Most CSIS staff in Montreal are tied up with high-risk traveller cases, an intelligence officer said this week.
“Our goal is to detect them, it’s the RCMP’s job to stop them,” he said, explaining that intelligence officers such as himself don’t have the authority to arrest or charge suspects.
The agent said almost anything is available on the Internet for curious young people who become radicalized.
They’re easily manipulated by cunning terrorists once they ask questions and make contacts on social networks such as Facebook or Twitter.
“There are guides that discuss how to go to Syria,” he said. “Guides that explain how to outwit the intelligence services. And there are guides on how to avoid investigation by police. Everything is there. It’s quite a challenge we have here.”