Venezuela, springboard for Hezbollah
The Center for a Secure and Free Society has released a report, CANADA ON GUARD: Assessing the Immigration Security Threat of Iran, Venezuela and Cuba which
highlights attempts to violate Canada’s immigration system, examines Venezuela’s role as a “bridge” for Iranian covert access to Canada, reviews the use of cultural exchange and other soft power strategies to win support for state sponsors of terrorism, and presents preliminary policy recommendations for strengthening Canada’s immigration and national security system
The report’s key points are:
- Iran is cooperating with Venezuela and Cuba to exploit the seams in the Canadian immigration system.
- From 2009 t0 2011, Latin America was the largest embarkation region for improperly documented Iranians migrating to Canada who seek refugee status.
- Venezuelan authorities provided at least 173 passports, visas and other documentation to Islamist extremists seeking to slip unnoticed into North America.
- Soft power solidarity networks in Canada serve as a “Trojan Horse” for Iran and ALBA to establish cover for spies, saboteurs and other nefarious actors.
Less than a year after Canada shuttered the Iranian embassy in Ottawa, the Iranian regime opened an “unofficial” consulate in Montreal and began shuttling paperwork back and forth to the Iranian embassy in Cuba for processing.
Especially interesting: the sections on how Cuba’s role in the Misión Identidad (biometric ID cards) immigration system facilitates the entry of Cuban agents into Venezuela, and Tare[c]k El Aissami’s role as Iran, Syria and Hezbollah’s man in Mérida.
Read more about Iranian infiltration in Canada and the Americas here.