Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre is denouncing a far-right German politician after three of his MPs met with her during her Canadian tour in support of the “Freedom Convoy” movement.
Christine Anderson, a European Parliament member with the Alternative für Deutschland party, concludes her four-stop tour of Canada with an event in Montreal on Friday after speaking in Calgary, Toronto, and Whitby, Ont.
Three Ontario Conservative MPs – Colin Carrie, Dean Allison and former leadership contender Leslyn Lewis – were photographed with Anderson this week.
Their participation was noted by the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs in an online statement.
“We’re deeply concerned by CPC MPs @LeslynLewis @DeanAllisonMP @ColinCarrieCPC meeting with @AndersonAfDMdEP – a member of the far-right German AFD Party known for Islamophobic and anti-immigrant views,” the advocacy group said in a Twitter post.
Poilievre said his MPs were unaware of her “vile” views and said they regret meeting with her.
“Frankly, it would be better if Anderson never visited Canada in the first place. She and her racist, hateful views are not welcome here,” he said in a written statement.
The three MPs released a statement saying it’s not uncommon for MPs to meet visiting elected officials from other countries and denied awareness of her views or her party’s.
Alternative für Deutschland has opposed immigration and decries what some of its members call the “Islamization” of Europe.
Speaking in the European Parliament last year, Anderson said Islam was the cause of the denial of women’s human rights in Afghanistan.
“For God’s sake, take a look around,” she said, claiming women are repressed in all Muslim countries.
“Call the devil by its name and stop using apologetic terms to downplay the true nature of the most despicable and horrific ideology women suffer from worldwide.”
Anderson made headlines in Canada last year when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke to the European Parliament.
“Mr. Trudeau, you are a disgrace for any democracy,” she said in a response to the parliament. “Please spare us your presence.”
Anderson has been welcomed warmly in Canada by many associated with the “Freedom Convoy” protests that gridlocked Ottawa and border crossings last year.
Tamara Lich, a leader of protests, was photographed with Anderson this week, along with two of her lawyers Keith Wilson and Eva Chipiuk, of the Edmonton-based Justice Centre for Freedom, which litigates against vaccine mandates and participated in the public inquiry studying the government’s use of the Emergencies Act.
From left, Christine Anderson, Keith Wilson, Tamara Lich and Eve Chipiuk
At one event, Anderson arrived in a convoy of semi-tractor trailer trucks, wearing a Freedom Fighters Canada sweatshirt.
In Toronto, she also posed for a photograph with the flag of Diagolon, an online protest movement that some law enforcement agencies consider an extremist group.
The “What Would Christine Anderson Do” tour’s sponsors included Canadians for Truth, an organization run by Saskatchewan businessman Joseph Bourgault, which also promotes speaking events by anti-mandate activists Jamie Sale, a former Olympic figure skater, and Theory Fleury, a former NHL player. Tickets for her events sold for $50.