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Vehicles, knives becoming terrorists’ weapons of choice: Canadian terror threat report

Police investigate after a U-Haul van ran into pedestrians in Edmonton, Alta., Sept. 30, 2017.
Police investigate after a U-Haul van ran into pedestrians in Edmonton, Alta., Sept. 30, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

OTTAWA – Public Safety Canada warns that extremists are increasingly carrying out simple but deadly attacks using knives and vehicles.

In its annual public report on the terrorist threat to Canada, the department notes such unsophisticated but “high-impact” assaults took place recently in Edmonton, where five people were injured, and in New York, killing eight people and injuring several more.

WATCH: Preventing vehicles from being used in terror attacks

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Preventing vehicles from being used in terror attacks

The report says terrorists also intend to develop cyberattack capabilities, but to date have shown little ability to launch damaging operations.

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It says just over 190 extremists with a nexus to Canada are abroad and suspected of engaging in terrorist activity.

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In addition, the government is aware of about 60 who have returned to Canada.

The report says these numbers have remained relatively stable over the last two years, as it has become more difficult for extremists to successfully leave or return to Canada.