Tuesday, May 24, 2016
MugShots: Haiyan Zhang [Spy] @ Privy Counsel Ottawa /update
Zhang at a glance
Haiyan Zhang's career has including working as a foreign correspondent in Egypt, an analyst's role inside a sensitive Canadian government department and, most recently, a five-year legal battle to go back to work for Ottawa after she was branded a security threat.
1963: Born in Lanzhou, China
1998: Earns a master's degree at the China School of Journalism
1989: Becomes the first female foreign correspondent for Xinhua, China's state-run news agency
1989-91: Reports for the Xinhua bureau in Cairo
1995-1999: Emigrates to Canada, starts Chinabridge Communications, a consultancy. Earns a master's of business administration from the University of Ottawa
1999: Receives Canadian citizenship
2002: Joins the Canadian civil service, starting at Industry Canada
February, 2003: Hired by the Privy Council Office as a senior analyst
August, 2003: Escorted from her office and fired, following a security-screening investigation by the Canadian Security Intelligence Service
November, 2003: An adjudicator hears her grievance and gives Ms. Zhang another job, with a lesser security clearance
2005: After secret hearings, the Security Intelligence Review Committee upholds the CSIS investigation to fire Ms. Zhang from the PCO
2006: The federal government assigns Ms. Zhang to a less sensitive job. She works for only a few days at Service Canada before she is told to go home and await the outcome of a new security investigation
2008: A Service Canada spokeswoman says the investigation is continuing
CSIS and Chinese agents
The Canadian government's five-year legal battle with an employee deemed to be an espionage threat is taking place at a time when counterintelligence agents complain that the Chinese agents are keeping them very busy. Jim Judd, director of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, had the following exchange with the Senate Committee on National Security and Defence one year ago.
Senator Rod Zimmer: Do other countries send individuals into our country? I presume they do...
Mr. Judd: Yes, they do come here. ... It is sometimes surprising the number of hyperactive tourists we get here and where they come from. I do not want to be politically incorrect, so I will not name specific countries, but at any given time there are maybe 15 countries that would be of interest to us in that regard. It ebbs and flows, depending on issues.
Senator Zimmer: Is it equal, or is there a fair number of individuals who come from certain countries?
Mr. Judd: There does tend to be a concentration of sorts, yes.
(Senator Colin Kenny): Surely it is not politically incorrect to comment on the public reports we have seen about the Chinese and what is reputed to be an aggressive program that they have in this country. The government has commented on this publicly.
Mr. Judd: They would be one of the 15 countries.
The Chairman: Are they at the top of the list?
Mr. Judd: Pretty much.
The Chairman: Do they take up 50 per cent of your time?
Mr. Judd: Close to it.
The 2013 Ottawa Peace Festival & Dialogue with Diversity Reaching Out Across the Ethnic/Religious Divide Thursday, 2013-09-26 at 6:30 pm @ Ottawa Public Library As usual, lots of time will be left for discussion!
Haiyan Zhang: Certified Management Consultant (CMC). Among other experiences, has advised many Canadian and international organizations on industries cross cultural effectiveness. Previously, Haiyan was also an international war correspondent, in the Persian Gulf. Haiyan believes in a balanced approach which combines the wisdom and values of humanity, regardless of Eastern or Western geography.
The RCMP say they've snared a man they allege was preparing to pass along classified information about Ottawa's massive shipbuilding program to China.
In what seems like lightning speed in an espionage case, the Mounties arrested Toronto resident Qing Quentin Huang after learning only last Thursday, Nov. 28, that someone was going to sell sensitive information to the Chinese. RCMP arrested Huang, a Canadian citizen, on Saturday afternoon.
It's not clear exactly what information Huang is alleged to have offered about the $34-billion Canada National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy, a program to provide new vessels for the Royal Canadian Navy and Canadian Coast Guard, as well as new ice-breakers and scientific research ships.
“In these types of cases, sharing of information may give a foreign entity a tactical, military or competitive advantage by knowing the specifications of vessels responsible for defending Canadian waters and Canadian sovereignty,” RCMP Chief Superintendent Jennifer Strachan, the force's Ontario chief of criminal operations, said in a news release.
The Globe and Mail reported Huang, 53, worked as an engineer at Lloyd's Register Canada Ltd., a subcontractor to Irving Shipbuilding Inc., which is building the combat vessels included in the program.
Integrated National Security Enforcement Team, which includes the Mounties, Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS), led the investigation, dubbed Project Seascape. The Toronto Police Service and Ontario Provincial Police were also involved, the RCMP release said.
The Canadian Press reported Huang made a court appearance Sunday morning and was scheduled to be back in court on Wednesday. He faces two counts under the Security of Information Act, a post-9/11 piece of legislation, of attempting to communicate to a foreign entity information that Canada was trying to safeguard.
“It is important to understand that there is more to national security than focusing solely on terrorism," said RCMP Chief Superintendent Larry Tremblay, director general of federal policing criminal operations. "It’s about protecting Canadian interests and taking the steps we need to take to protect our sovereignty.”
This is the first major spy case since Jeffrey Delisle, a naval officer working in a Halifax intelligence facility, was arrested last year and convicted of passing along top secret information to Russian military intelligence. He was sentenced last February to 20 years in prison in a case that damaged Canada's reputation for safeguarding secret information because Delisle had access to intelligence data from Canada's NATO allies.
There have been warnings for years that Canada is an important target for Chinese espionage, including industrial spying, though the Chinese government stoutly denies that.
A Canadian journalist working for China's official Xinhua news agency claimed last year he was asked to spy on the Dalai Lama during his visit to Ottawa, CP reported.
Mark Bourrie claimed last year that Xinhua's Ottawa bureau chief, Dacheng Zhang, wanted him to use his parliamentary press pass to get into the Dalai Lama's news conference and turn over all notes and materials without writing a news story. Zhang denied the claim.
Many in the intelligence community regard the Xinhua, which was created by the Chinese Communist Party in the 1930s, as a front for espionage operations.
The news service came under scrutiny in 2011, when it was revealed Shi Rong, its Toronto correspondent, had a close friendship with Toronto-area MP Bob Dechert. The married Dechert, at the time a parliamentary secretary for foreign affairs, sent flirty emails to Rong. Dechert apologized but did not resign from his parliamentary secretary position, while Rong left the country.
And in 2005, former Xinhua correspondent Haiyan Zhang, who'd gained Canadian citizenship and gone to work for the government, was dismissed after concerns were raised she was engaged in intelligence gathering for a foreign country.
Zhang worked as a communications analyst for the Privy Council Office, which is the federal cabinet's powerful administrative hub.
CSIS recommended Zhang be denied Top Secret security clearance, claiming she'd been suspected of intelligence gathering while working at Xinhua and had retained contact with Chinese spies, the National Post reported in 2011.