Canada is a shocked nation. The murder of Mr. Pierre Laporte, the Quebec Labour Minister?
Canada is a shocked nation. The murder of Mr. Pierre Laporte, the Quebec Labour Minister by his kidnappers prompted Mr. Pierre Trudeau, the Canadian Prime Minster, to refer to the extremist element of the Qebec Liberation Front (FLQ) as "cowardly assassins", and a "band of murders". Mr. Laporter's body was discovered by police late on Saturday (October 17). He had been shot in the head.
The body of Pierre Laporte, 49-year-old father of two children, was found in the boot of a car--the same car in which he was snatched from his home last Sunday (October II).
Acting on a tip-off to a private radio station, police rushed to St. Hubert Airport, Montreal where they found the car. But it was several hours before the boot was opened. The authorities feared it might have been bodytrapped. When eventually it was prised open, Mr. Laporter's body was found.
At first, reports indicted that the body of Mr. James Cross, the kidnapped British Trade Commissioner had also been found. This was later denied.
A complete news black-out was ordered about Mr. Cross by the police.
As the hours passed, and eventually word that Mr. Cross was still alive filtered through a Federal Government spokesman in Ottawa said the offer of safe conduct to his kidnappers remained open, despite Mr. Laporte's murder.
Mr. Cross and Mr. Laporte had been abducted by different cells of the FLQ and "different cells might have reached different decisions" the spokesman said. "It's our only real hope", he added.
Each passing hour brought more and more condemnation of the FLQ execution move from the public of Canada and also from Canadian leaders.
An obviously shocked Mr. Pierre Trudeau, the Federal Prime Minister, echoed the feelings of the Canadian Nation when he told reporters: