OTTAWA (Reuters) - The five nations that make up the world’s leading intelligence-sharing network will meet in London next month to confer on strategies to fight terrorism in the wake of the Paris attacks, Canada said on Tuesday.
Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney said the so-called Five Eyes - the United States, Australia, Canada, Britain and New Zealand - had scheduled a meeting for Jan 22.
A Canadian government official later said the five would actually meet in London some time in February.
Blaney’s comments were unusual, since members of the Five Eyes network rarely talk about its activity.
“We’re going to have a meeting with our Five Eyes allies in London ... and this is serious stuff. Terrorism will be there” on the agenda, he told CTV television.
U.S. intelligence officials have shared with their French counterparts information related to the travel history of those suspected of involvement in the Paris attacks, in which a total of 17 people died, a White House spokesman said on Tuesday.
Blaney gave no more details of the London meeting, save to say that U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson would be present.
Separately, the Canadian government official said the London event had been scheduled before the Paris attacks.
“The Five Eyes regularly meet to discuss shared concerns and approaches,” he said.The official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, added that the fight against terrorism would be “a major focus” of the meeting but declined to give more details.
The five nations that comprise the group divide the world into eavesdropping target sectors and share the results.
Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by Grant McCool and Lisa Shumaker