Quebec Parliament
Quebec ParliamentiStock

Canadian police have raided multiple homes in the province of Quebec belonging to suspected members of a notorious international neo-Nazi network.

Approximately 60 RCMP officers conducted the operation throughout southwestern Quebec, searching homes belonging to residents linked to the Atomwaffen Division, which is proscribed by the Canadian government as a terror group.

"It's a far-right affiliated group, which could be described as having neo-Nazi allegiance," RCMP Corporal Charles Poirier said, according to CBC News.

Poirier announced that the police raid, which involved executing search warrants in St-Ferdinand and Plessisville, towns located between Montreal and Quebec City, was a “national security operation.”

He added that the general public was in no danger and no arrested have been made so far.

"But they could come depending on what we can find. Investigators will be on site for several hours," he said.

The action by law enforcement was part of a two-year old investigation.

The Quebec detachment of the RCMP said on Twitter: “Searches underway in St-Ferdinand and Plessisville. Investigation targeting individuals suspected of being associated with the terrorist group Division Atomwaffen. All measures are in place to ensure the safety of the population and our police officers.”

A command centre was reportedly set up beside a church next to a house being searched by officers. The operation involved an emergency response team, an armoured vehicle, police dogs and Quebec provincial police.

Atomwaffen Division is an extreme right wing organization that began in the U.S. in 2013, allegedly taking inspiration from Charles Manson and his ideology of a future apocalyptic race war.

According to the ADL, “Atomwaffen distinguishes itself by its extreme rhetoric, influenced by the writings of a neo-Nazi of an earlier generation, James Mason, who admired Charles Manson and supported the idea of lone wolf violence. Members of Atomwaffen have already been connected to several murders in the group’s short history.”

Canada’s Public Safety Department website said that Atomwaffen encourages "acts of violence against racial, religious, and ethnic groups," as well as against law enforcement and officials "to prompt the collapse of society.”

In May, a 19-year old man from Windsor, Ontario was charged with terrorism after filling out an online application to join the extremist group, offering to use his skills to enable their cause, Kelowna Now reported.