David Johnston looks on during a farewell reception in Ottawa on Thursday, Sept. 28, 2017. Former governor general Johnston says he will have a hand in determining his own mandate as special rapporteur on foreign interference in recent federal elections.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Johnston’s advice on public inquiry about foreign interference expected Tuesday

Special rapporteur David Johnston is expected to release his decision next Tuesday on whether the federal Liberals should hold a public inquiry on foreign interference.

The recommendation is anticipated to be included in an initial report about how the government should proceed with allegations that Canada’s last two federal elections were subject to meddling by other countries.

Opposition parties’ calls for a public inquiry into Chinese meddling have grown louder throughout the year amid a series of media reports shedding light on Beijing’s alleged attempts to influence the 2019 and 2021 elections.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau tapped the former governor general to assess the extent and impact of such interference in Canada’s electoral process, including by reviewing the response to threats in the past two elections.

The government said Johnston has been given access to relevant documents, records and classified information, and security services are providing the information he needs for the investigation.

Johnston’s first report is set to be publicly released at 12 p.m. ET on Tuesday, and he has been tapped to release a more-detailed final report by the end of October.

Pop-up banner image