Maritime provinces offer condolences after Toronto van attack, reflect on own safety

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WATCH: Maritime provinces are offering their condolences after 10 people died as a result of a van attack in Toronto. Steve Silva has more – Apr 24, 2018

Politicians in Atlantic Canada are expressing sympathy for the victims after a rented van plowed down a busy street in Toronto, killing 10 people and wounding 15 others.

Toronto van attack: What we know and don’t know about the deadly rampage

Alek Minassian, 25, is suspected of driving a rented van on the sidewalk along Yonge Street in north Toronto on Monday afternoon. On Tuesday, he was charged with 10 counts of first-degree murder and 13 counts of attempted murder.

New Brunswick Premier Brian Gallant told reporters on Tuesday he was shocked and saddened to hear the “horrible news.”

“Our sympathies and our thoughts are with the victims of the terrible incident in Toronto. We’re all thinking of those who have lost their lives, their families and of course those are injured. And we certainly hope they have a speedy recovery,” Gallant said.

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“We offer any support we can give to Toronto to Ontario and to the families of those affected.”

He went on to say that New Brunswick is not “immune” to incidents like the one in Toronto.

“We have to be very vigilant and always do everything we can to ensure we’re keeping New Brunswickers safe,” he said.

“With that said, we do live in a bit of a smaller province and smaller cities than some of the major centres, so we do feel very safe here but we should never think we’re immune to these types of incidents and we’ll certainly do everything we can to learn from this incident if there’s any lessons to be learned.”

Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil has also tweeted that his thoughts are with the victims and their families after the “horrific incident.”

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Meanwhile, Halifax Mayor Mike Savage called the events in Toronto “devastating news.”

“I have a number of brothers and sisters and family and friends that live in Toronto and so maybe that makes it more impactful but even without that personal connection, we all just look at something and say, ‘What makes somebody do something that devastating?'” he said.

Savage, who was speaking outside Halifax council where they are in the midst of budget discussions, says the city is already looking to increase investments in policing.

“Our law enforcement people look at things like this, talk to their colleagues across the country and say, ‘What can we do here in the Halifax region to make our streets safer from this increasing type of attack?'” he said.

As well, the flag of Ontario is being flown outside of the Halifax Regional Police headquarters and the flag of Toronto has been raised in Grand Parade outside Halifax City Hall in honour of the victims.

— With a file from The Canadian Press


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