British Columbia

U.S. Olympic critic denied entry into Canada

An American freelance journalist and Olympic critic was denied entry into Canada on Saturday, according to the Olympic Resistance Network.

An American freelance journalist and Olympic critic was denied entry into Canada on Saturday, according to the Olympic Resistance Network.

In a release, the organization said Martin Macias, Jr. was detained by border officials at Vancouver International Airport on Saturday morning and questioned for several hours.

The organization said the U.S. Consulate told them Macias was eventually denied entry and put on a plane for Seattle.

It said Macias is a reporter at a community radio station in Chicago and a leading member of No Games Chicago, an organization that opposed that city's bid for the 2016 Summer Olympic Games.

Macias was travelling to Vancouver for political events including a two-day conference, the organization said, and he was to leave Vancouver on Feb. 11, before the start of the Games.

The group said he was travelling with Bob Quellos of No Games Chicago, who it said was allowed to enter Canada.

The Olympic Resistance Network, a Vancouver-based anti-Olympic group, maintains Macias was denied entry because of his known opposition to the Olympics.

The organization said this is not the first time an Olympic critic has been denied access. It says border agents, police and intelligence units have been actively harassing opponents of the Olympic Games for years. 

A spokesperson for the Canada Border Services Agency wouldn't discuss the specific case because of privacy issues, but said in an email Canada's admissibility requirements will not change for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

With files from The Canadian Press

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