'Chinese police stations': Montreal groups demand answers, apology after police investigation
Some Chinese Quebecers are asking for an explanation and an apology from the RCMP after Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino said the federal police force had shut down all so-called “Chinese police stations” in Canada.
The RCMP confirmed in March that it had opened an investigation into alleged stations. According to human rights group Safeguard Defenders, so-called Chinese police stations are used to monitor and threaten Chinese citizens living abroad, sometimes forcing them to return to China for persecution.
A 2022 report from the organization, which monitors disappearances in China, alleged the discovery of over 100 Chinese police stations across the globe.
Two greater Montreal groups – the Service à la Famille Chinoise du Grand Montréal, in Montreal's Chinatown, and the Centre Sino-Québec de la Rive-Sud, in Brossard – were suspected of being stations, according to police.
Those groups denied the allegations, and say they haven’t heard anything from the RCMP. They told CTV they want an explanation.
"Suddenly, to read in the newspaper yesterday that ‘oh, good news, the RCMP shut down all (Chinese) police stations in Canada’, we were just floored,” said Mei Chiu, coordinator for the Chinatown Round Table.
“What does this mean?” she asked. “The people, the organizations, the community never received any news, any feedback.”
They say the reputations of various community groups have been badly hurt by the allegations against them, claiming donors had been lost, and that they are no longer able to provide the type of support they once could.
"There has been so much damage done," Chiu continued. “What was the evidence against us? What are the specific accusations?"
“Who is accountable for all the harm that has fallen on our community?,” she asked.