The gunman who shot dead a soldier in Canada's capital and then stormed Parliament last year said he was protesting against Canadian military involvement in Afghanistanand Iraq, according to a video recording released on Friday.
Michael Zehaf-Bibeau made the short video on his mobile phone just before he launched his attacks on Oct 22. Zehaf-Bibeau, a Canadian convert to Islam, died in a gun battle with police and security guards shortly after entering the Parliament Buildings in Ottawa.
"To those who are involved and listen to this movie, this is in retaliation for Afghanistan and because (Canadian Prime Minister Stephen) Harper wants to send his troops to Iraq," Zehaf-Bibeau said on the video, which police played to a committee of legislators.
"So we are retaliating, the Mujahedin of this world … just aiming to hit some soldiers just to show that you're not even safe in your own land, and you gotta be careful," he said.
Zehaf-Bibeau, 32, struck three weeks after Canada decided to deploy forces in Iraq as part of a campaign against Islamic State militants. Two days earlier, another convert to Islam had run down and killed a soldier in Quebec with his car.
Canada maintained a military mission in Afghanistan for the 10 years up to 2011.
Harper cited the attacks and the threat of "jihadist terrorism" as the reason for a tough new draft security law the right-leaning Conservative government unveiled on Jan. 30.
Critics say the law – which would give Canada's spies greater powers to disrupt attacks – is too sweeping.
Royal Canadian Mounted Police Commissioner Bob Paulson did not say if the police probe into the attacks had determined whether Zehaf-Bibeau was acting alone.
"Anyone who aided him, abetted him, counselled him, facilitated his crimes or conspired with him is also in our view a terrorist," he told the committee.
Paulson said 13 seconds had been edited from the start of the video and five seconds from the end. He declined to explain why, citing operational reasons.
"We'll not cease until you guys decide to be a peaceful country … and stop going to other countries and stop occupying and killing the righteous of us who are trying to bring back religious law in our countries," Zehaf-Bibeau said in the video.
Paulson made his remarks in the same parliamentary room where Conservative legislators were meeting when the attack took place on Oct. 22.