Canadian PM: Attack was terrorism – Associated Press – POLITICO.com

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper

OTTAWA, Ontario — A masked gunman killed a soldier standing guard at Canada’s war memorial Wednesday, then stormed Parliament in an attack that was stopped cold when he was shot to death by the ceremonial sergeant-at-arms. Canada’s prime minister called it the country’s second terrorist attack in three days.

“We will not be intimidated. Canada will never be intimidated,” Prime Minister Stephen Harper vowed in an address to the nation.

Unfolding just before 10 a.m., while lawmakers were meeting in caucus rooms, the assault rocked Parliament over and over with the boom of gunfire, led MPs to barricade doors with chairs and sent people streaming from the building in fear. Harper was addressing a caucus when the attack began outside the door, but he safely escaped.

Investigators offered little information about the gunman, identified as 32-year-old ex-convict Michael Zehaf-Bibeau. But Harper said: “In the days to come we will learn about the terrorist and any accomplices he may have had.”

Canada was already on alert at the time because of a deadly hit-and-run assault Monday against two Canadian soldiers by a man Harper described as an “ISIL-inspired terrorist.”

ISIL, or Islamic State, has called for reprisals against Canada and other Western countries that have joined the U.S.-led air campaign against the extremist group in Iraq and Syria.

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