THE man who killed a Canadian soldier and attacked the country’s parliament building last week made a video of himself beforehand.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) said yesterday in a statement that it was conducting a detailed analysis of the video made by Michael Zehaf-Bibeau and could not release it yet.
The RCMP also said that there was evidence to show that the attack was “driven by ideological and political motives”.
Zehaf-Bibeau, 32, stormed into the parliament building with a rifle last Wednesday after shooting and killing Corporal Nathan Cirillo at a nearby monument to Canada’s war dead. The gunman was shot dead in the building.
The federal police force said that it believed a knife carried by Zehaf-Bibeau had been retrieved from his aunt’s property, but added it was still looking into the origin of the gun he used.
The statement said: “It is an old and uncommon gun. We suspect that he could have similarly hidden the gun on the property but our inquiries continue.”
The RCMP also said that Zehaf-Bibeau had worked in Alberta’s oil fields and used the money he made to finance his activities in the days leading up to the attack.
He had been living in an Ottawa homeless shelter just before the shooting.
Police are still investigating Zehaf-Bibeau’s links with several people in the days before the attack to find out if they could have contributed to, or helped in, his crime.
Security in normally relaxed Canada has been tighter in the days since the shooting.
Two days earlier another man, described by police as radicalised, drove a car over two soldiers in Quebec, killing one.
The attacker, 25-year-old Martin Rouleau, was shot and killed by police.
The attacks, which police said were the work of Canadian citizens who were recent converts to Islam, came in the same week as the government sent more jet fighters to the Middle East to take part in air strikes against Islamic State militants.
Canadian officials vowed to keep up their involvement in the military campaign despite the attacks and planned to reopen the parliament building to the public yesterday, though they said they would begin locking doors overnight.
Meanwhile, the mother of Zehaf-Bibeau, in a letter to a Canadian news agency, has denied an RCMP statement that she had told them her son had intended to travel to Syria.
Zehaf-Bibeau, who came to Ottawa from Vancouver seeking a passport, had wanted to travel to Saudi Arabia to study the Koran, Susan Bibeau said,
The nation also prepared for two funerals, with that of Cpl Cirillo – a reservist with the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders of Canada (Princess Louise’s) – in his home town of Hamilton, Ontario, today.
A funeral for 53-year-old Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent – the victim of the hit-and-run attack – was set for this Saturday in Quebec.
On Sunday, about 100 police, firefighters and other emergency workers held a disaster-response drill in Toronto’s deserted financial district. The drill was long planned, although some acknowledged that it took on a more urgent tone after the attacks.