White House looking at placing troops along Canada-U.S. border, Justin Trudeau says
|Toronto Star 26 Mar 2020 at 13:09|
OTTAWA—Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he’s aware of preliminary plans by the United States to place American troops along the border with Canada to deter people from crossing and spreading COVID-19.
In comments Thursday, Trudeau made clear Canada’s unease with the plan as he defended the fact the border is now free of military forces on either side.
“Canada and the United States have the longest unmilitarized border in the world and it is very much in both of our interests to remain that way. We have been in discussions with the United States on this,” the prime minister said in his daily briefing.
He said the fact the border is not militarized is “something that has benefitted our two countries and both our economies tremendously.
“We feel that it needs to remain that way,” he said.
According to the report, troops would be placed at points near the border between official crossings to detect those trying to sneak into the U.S. That information would be passed to U.S. border agents who would be responsible for detaining such border crossers.
As well Thursday, Trudeau said that Finance Minister Bill Morneau is in discussions with banks about reducing interest rates on credit card debt. And he said that Ottawa was looking at ways to provide loans to Canadians at lower rates.