Concordia bomb threat: Who is the group purportedly behind the threat?
Montreal’s Concordia University was forced to evacuate two campus buildings Wednesday after receiving a threat against Muslim students, allegedly from the Canadian chapter of a white nationalist group.
Several Canadian media outlets, including Global News, received an emailed threat purportedly from the Council of Conservative Citizens of Canada (C4).
“This is a warning letter from the underground C4 chapter at Concordia University to all Moslem students,” the letter reads. “We will inform the authorities and the media about it.”
The letter goes on to say that “Now that President Trump is in the office south of the border, things have changed.”
“We will not tolerate your behaviour anymore. One of our members reported her concern to the [Concordia Student Union] – who didn’t do anything – about the Friday Prayers and the often anti-Christian and anti-Jewish speeches,” reads the threat, complete with C4 letterhead.
Though it remains unclear, the C4 appears to be a splinter group of one of America’s largest white supremacist groups known as the Council of Conservative Citizens (CCC), a group that was established in the mid-1980s.
According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, an organization that monitors hate groups and extremists, the CCC was founded by attorney and racist activist Gordon Baum in 1985 and stemmed from the defunct group Citizens Councils of America, also known as White Citizens Councils. As the watchdog group points out, the White Citizens Councils opposed the desegregation of schools in the ‘50s and ‘60s.
In 2015, attention was focused on the CCC after some of the group’s white supremacist propaganda was cited in Charleston, South Carolina church shooter Dylann Roof’s so-called manifesto.
Roof was sentenced to death earlier this year for the 2015 killing of nine members of a black church during a Bible study class.
The CCC also has a Canadian connection. Paul Fromm, a former Ontario teacher, serves as the international director of the white supremacist group and is the executive director of the Canadian Association for Free Expression; a Mississauga-based group that has fought against anti-hate legislation, immigration policy and laws to protect gay rights.
Fromm was removed from the classroom in 1997 and was stripped of his teaching licence in 2007 over ties to racist organizations and activities.
WATCH: Bomb threat shuts down Concordia University in Montreal
In today’s threat against the post-secondary institute, the C4 said “Until Concordia University stops religious activities of all kinds on campus, we decided the following action to show how far we are ready to go to fight Moslems.”
The group said it would set off small “amateur explosive devices” that they claimed were planted on floors in buildings “where Moslems hang out.”
“These are not meant to kill anybody. The only aim is to injure some Moslem students,” reads the email from C4. “Unfortunately some non-Moslems might be collateral damage. If Concordia decides to ban Moslem activities, we will deactivate the explosives.”
–With a file from Global News reporter Nick Logan
© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.