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Journalists Robert Fife and Steven Chase have won the Canadian Hillman Journalism Award for their work exposing foreign interference in Canadian elections.The Globe and Mail

Two Globe and Mail journalists have received the Canadian Hillman Prize for Journalism for their work exposing political interference by China in Canadian elections.

Ottawa bureau chief Robert Fife and senior parliamentary reporter Steven Chase won in the print/digital category. The award is presented by the Sidney Hillman Foundation to recognize investigative journalism and storytelling done in service of the “common good.”

Mr. Fife and Mr. Chase had already done extensive reporting on allegations of Chinese interference in Canada when they obtained top-secret and secret intelligence reports on the issue.

Those leaked documents resulted in a series of stories, including the first in February of 2023, that detailed how Chinese diplomats and their proxies worked to back the re-election in 2021 of Justin Trudeau’s Liberals and defeat Conservative politicians considered to be unfriendly to Beijing.

Their work continued throughout the year, as they used sources and classified documents to reveal other allegations, including how Beijing targeted a sitting Conservative MP and his Hong Kong-based relatives over the MP’s campaign to spotlight China’s human-rights abuses of the Uyghurs.

Mr. Fife and Mr. Chase’s stories prompted significant political fallout, including parliamentary votes for a public inquiry; the appointment of special rapporteur David Johnston; and Mr. Johnston’s resignation, followed by the government’s decision to call a public inquiry in the face of mounting pressure.

The Globe’s reporting also led to the expulsion of a Chinese diplomat, Zhao Wei, who was named in The Globe’s story on Mr. Chong.

“The Globe’s reporting on Chinese state interference in the democratic process fundamentally altered the way Canadians think about their government’s willingness to confront the issue in a serious way,” the Sidney Hillman Foundation wrote in a notice announcing the award.

“These stories fuelled discussion about the need for vigilance and stronger measures to protect Canadian democracy, values and institutions from foreign interference and espionage.”

The Sidney Hillman Foundation has two versions of the Hillman Prize, one in the United States and one in Canada.

Other Canadian winners this year include Brandi Morin and Geordie Day of Ricochet Media, The Real News Network and IndigiNews Media in the broadcast category for their work on water contamination in Alberta’s oil sands; and Aaron Derfel of the Montreal Gazette in the local news category for his work investigating preventable deaths in a Montreal emergency room.

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