Suspected Chinese surveillance balloon spotted in Canadian airspace

On Thursday, Ottawa summoned China's ambassador to Canada in response to reports of a Chinese spy balloon that, according to Global News, spent time in Canadian airspace.

Team Parvasi – Inside

On Thursday, Ottawa summoned China’s ambassador to Canada in response to reports of a Chinese spy balloon that, according to Global News, spent time in Canadian airspace.
Following questions about American reports of a suspected Chinese surveillance balloon over that country, Canadian officials said on Feb. 2 that a high-altitude surveillance balloon was detected and its movements are being actively tracked by NORAD.

In an email to Global News on Friday, spokesperson for Foreign Affairs Minister Melanie Joly said, “Yesterday, China’s Ambassador to Canada was summoned by officials at Global Affairs Canada regarding the situation described in the statement issued by the Department of National Defence.”
Officials from the Department of National Defence stated that Canadians are safe and that the federal government is taking precautions to ensure the security of its airspace, including monitoring for a second potential incident.

 A spokesperson for the defense department said, “Canada’s intelligence agencies are working with American partners and continue to take all necessary measures to safeguard Canada’s sensitive information from foreign intelligence threats.”
Many details about the incident remain unknown, including when and where the balloon is thought to have entered Canadian airspace.

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The Chinese foreign ministry stated on Friday that the balloon was for civilian meteorological and other scientific purposes, and that the airship strayed into US airspace. It also stated that it will continue to communicate with the US in order to properly handle the unexpected situation.
According to a senior defence official, the US has “very high confidence” that the object was a Chinese high-altitude balloon flying over sensitive sites to collect data.

On Friday, Canadian political reactions began to pour in, with Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre calling the report “outrageous.”

“It’s outrageous and very concerning that a hostile foreign government had a spy balloon in our airspace and continued to transit into the northwestern United States,” he said in Ottawa.

 

Prabhnoor Kaur

NEWS

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