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Did Kevin Vickers overreact?

Diplomatic and security experts are debate Canadian ambassador’s decision to intervene


 

OTTAWA — Diplomatic and security experts are raising questions over a Canadian ambassador’s decision to subdue a protester.

Neither Prime Minister Trudeau nor Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion are commenting on Kevin Vickers’ actions in Dublin this week.

But former Canadian diplomat Gar Purdy says it appears Vickers overreacted when he grabbed a republican protester who tried to rush an event marking the death of British soldiers.

And Terrence Chase, a former Canadian Forces soldier who is the director of Surrey, B-C-based Defence Intelligence Service, says although Vickers was unharmed in the altercation, the ambassador has raised new security concerns for himself.

He and Purdy both say Irish police will have to consider whether Vickers’ high-profile reaction to Murphy’s peaceful demonstration could attract the violent fringe of the long-running Irish republican movement.

Vickers is best known for his part in shooting and killing an armed assailant inside the Parliament buildings, where he served as sergeant-at-arms for the House of Commons.

Canadian Ambassador to Ireland Kevin Vickers, right, wrestles with a protester during a State ceremony to remember the British soldiers who died during the Easter Rising at Grangegorman Military Cemetery, Dublin Thursday May 26, 2016.  Vickers helped subdue a demonstrator who began chanting “insult” at the service commemorating more than 100 British soldiers killed trying to suppress the Easter Rising a century ago. (Brian Lawless/AP)

Canadian Ambassador to Ireland Kevin Vickers, right, wrestles with a protester during a State ceremony to remember the British soldiers who died during the Easter Rising at Grangegorman Military Cemetery, Dublin Thursday May 26, 2016.  (Brian Lawless, AP)


 
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