Trump faces hostility on visits to massacre sites

first_imgWashington DC: President Donald Trump is flying Wednesday to the sites of mass shootings in Ohio and Texas, but the divisive Republican risks meeting protests by Americans who blame him for stoking the violence. Trump has been walking a difficult line since the massacres of 31 people over the weekend — 22 at a Walmart frequented by large numbers of Hispanic people in El Paso, Texas, and nine killed by a second gunman in Dayton, Ohio. The visits “will be about honoring victims, comforting communities, and thanking first responders & medical professionals for their heroic actions,” White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham tweeted. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from USBut as a politician constantly warning over what he calls an “invasion” of illegal immigrants, Trump finds himself accused by opponents of inspiring the El Paso gunman’s anti-immigrant hatred and the country’s volatile atmosphere in general. Protesters are expected to turn out in both places, even if the president is likely to be shielded from even witnessing dissent. At the first stop, Dayton’s Democratic mayor Nan Whaley bluntly promised to give Trump a piece of her mind, telling him “how unhelpful he’s being.” “The people should stand up and say they are not happy,” she told journalists Tuesday. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential pollsIn El Paso, the US-Mexico border town Trump will visit before returning on Air Force One to Washington, local Democratic congresswoman Veronica Escobar said she’d stay clear. “From my perspective, he is not welcome here. He should not come here,” Escobar said Tuesday on MSNBC. Even the city’s Republican mayor offered only a grudging welcome, stressing icily that he would greet Trump in his “official capacity.” – ‘Least racist person’ – Trump has been infuriated by accusations that his administration is deliberately dividing the United States along long-festering racial lines. “I am the least racist person. Black, Hispanic and Asian Unemployment is the lowest (BEST) in the history of the United States!” he tweeted Tuesday. But his campaign speeches and tweets repeatedly invoke the idea that the southern border is under “invasion.” As recently as May, the president laughed and made a quip when a supporter at one of his rallies yelled that they should “shoot” illegal immigrants. Trump has also railed crudely against a string of Democratic opponents of colour. The 21-year-old El Paso killer, who was captured alive, appeared to be closely inspired by similar sentiments. He released a manifesto declaring “this attack is a response to the Hispanic invasion of Texas.” The motives of the Dayton murderer, who was 24 and was shot dead by police at the scene of the crime, were less clear. He reportedly had a history of violently misogynistic attitudes. Where Trump and his mostly leftist opponents agree is on the unambiguous designation of the two events as terrorism. Massacres by mostly lone gunmen are all but routine in the United States, where guns are easy to obtain legally and mass killings have taken on a sort of cult status in some extreme circles. Hardline defenders of gun ownership have long resisted portrayal of such tragedies as anything more than random, localized events. But Trump came out Monday in a White House speech condemning “racism, bigotry and white supremacy” as “sinister ideologies.” “We have asked the FBI to identify all further resources they need to investigate and disrupt hate crimes and domestic terrorism,” he said.last_img read more

Yamuna below danger mark as water level recedes

first_imgNEW DELHI: The water level of Yamuna is receding and the river is now flowing below the danger mark of 205.33 metres, an official said on Thursday.”The level of Yamuna at railway bridge was 206.60 metres at 10 am. It is expected to recede further,” the official at the flood department’s control room said. The water level of Yamuna reached the highest level of 206.60 metres Wednesday morning and remained constant for nearly seven hours. The river started receding from afternoon and flowed at 206.44 metres at 6 pm. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderIt had crossed the danger mark of 205.33 metres on Monday. Officials said around 23,000 affected people were evacuated from the flood-plains to safer places. Over 18,000 of them were accommodated in more than 2700 relief tents set up by the Delhi government agencies. A total of 35 boats were deployed to rescue the stranded people. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said that he was in touch with the Haryana government and expected that the situation will improve by Thursday as the neighbouring state was reducing the amount of water being released towards Delhi. Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchings”The water level of Yamuna was recorded at 206.10 at 9 pm near Old Railway Bridge. The river is expected to go down the danger level by early Thursday morning,” said Delhi government officials. The water level of Yamuna reached the highest level of 206.60 metres on Wednesday morning and remained constant for nearly seven hours. The river started receding from afternoon and flowed at 206.44 metres at 6 pm. It had crossed the danger mark of 205.33 metres on Monday. A Northern Railway spokesperson said rail traffic over the old Yamuna bridge, temporarily suspended on Tuesday night, was restored at 4.25 pm on Wednesday with speed restriction of 20 kmph. On Wednesday afternoon, the Chief Minister met the people who were shifted from inundated low-lying areas to relief tents near Usmanpur and assured them of all the help. “Met the flood affected people at the Yamuna bank. Most people have left their belongings in their houses but its good thing that there is no loss of life. Arrangements of tents, food, water and medicine have been made. Let us know if there is any shortage, we will immediately do the needful,” CM Kejriwal tweeted in Hindi after the visit.last_img read more

Final NRC out in Assam nearly 2 million stare at uncertain future

first_imgGuwahati: The updated final NRC, which validates bonafide Indian citizens of Assam, was out on Saturday, with over 19 lakh applicants who failed to make it to the list staring at an uncertain future. A total of 3,30,27,661 people had applied to be included in the NRC. Of them, 3,11,21,004 have been included in the document and 19,06,657 excluded, a statement from the NRC State Coordinator’s office said here. Those who have been excluded from the National Register of Citizens have 120 days to appeal against it at Foreigners Tribunals. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details The Assam government has already ruled out detention of people who do not figure in the list “in any circumstances” till the time Foreigners Tribunals declare them foreigners. The final list was published at 10 am and the hard copies of the Supplementary List of Inclusions are available for public viewing at the NRC Seva Kendras (NSK), offices of the deputy commissioner and offices of the Circle Officer during office hours, a statement by the NRC authority said. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from Thursday Hundreds of people began thronging these offices soon after the list was released, with some returning home happy and some disappointed. The ruling BJP and opposition Congress, besides the All Assam Students Union said they were dissatisfied with the final citizenship roll. Ramen Deka, a former BJP MP from Mangaldoi, said a large number of illegal Muslim migrants from Bangladesh had made the cut, while many indigenous people were left out. “We are not at all happy. A large number of Bangladeshi Muslims have been enlisted, while genuine Indian citizens have been left out. The exercise was conducted under the supervision of the Supreme Court but the document is not up to the mark,” he said. Abdul Khaleque, the Congress lawmaker from Barpeta, said he was “not fully satisfied”. “A lot of genuine names have been excluded,” he said. The All Assam Students Union (AASU), which spearheaded the 6-year movement that culminated in the signing of the Assam Accord of 1985, also said it was not happy with the final NRC and will appeal against it in the Supreme Court. One of the clauses of the accord was “detection, deletion and deportation” of illegal Bangladeshi migrants. “We are not happy at all. It seems there were some deficiencies in the updatation process. We believe that it is an incomplete NRC. We will appeal to the Supreme Court to remove all the faults and descrepancies in this NRC,” AASU General Secretary Lurinjyoti Gogoi said. Addressing a press conference, Gogoi said the final figure of exclusion did not even come close to the figures officially announced by authorities on various occasions. Assam minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, who is also the convener of the North-East Democratic Alliance (NEDA), the NDA’s version in the northeast, deplored that many people who came to India as refugees before 1971 were not included in the final citizenship roll. He demanded that the Supreme Court allow reverification of at least 20 per cent of people included in the list in districts bordering Bangladesh and 10 per cent in the rest of Assam. “Names of many Indian citizens who migrated from Bangladesh as refugees prior to 1971 have not been included in the NRC because authorities refused to accept refugee certificates. Many names got included because of manipulation of legacy data as alleged by many,” he tweeted. The Assam Public Works (APW), the original petitioner in the Supreme Court which led to the NRC updation, called the final NRC a “flawed document”. It said the citizenship roll could not become error-free because the apex court had turned down its demand for reverification. “The Final NRC has made it obvious that the problem of illegal immigration will never be resolved in Assam. If this NRC had been completed flawlessly, it would have gone down as a golden chapter in Assam’s history,” APW president Aabhijeet Sharma said.last_img read more

Delhi orders check on acid sale 1000 litres acid seized

first_imgNew Delhi: Challans of close to Rs 7 lakh were issued and over thousand litres of acid was seized in the national capital in the last 10 days under a special drive against acid attacks directed by Delhi Chief Secretary Vijay Dev. In a statement issued on Monday, the government said that a special meeting was held on August 22 headed by the Chief Secretary to discuss various issues regarding acid attacks in the city. “In the meeting, the Chief Secretary expressed concern over the incidents of acid attacks and directed all departments to work towards checking the sale of acid and rehabilitating acid attack survivors,” it said. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murder The meeting was also attended by Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) Chairperson Swati Maliwal, secretaries of several departments, and representatives of Delhi Police, among others. In the meeting, Dev directed the Divisional Commissioner-cum-Secretary (Revenue) to immediately constitute a joint team of area sub-divisional magistrate (SDMs), DCW representatives and Delhi Police personnel. “The Chief Secretary issued instructions that these joint teams will conduct daily raids and any place found to be selling or not maintaining proper records shall be booked on the spot both by the SDM and the Delhi Police.” Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchings The DCW was asked to collect local intelligence through its network of women and identify the shops that were selling acid which could then be raided, the statement added. “The Chief Secretary had stated that this would be a 10-day special drive of the Delhi government and similar drives will be conducted on a regular basis.” In the past 10 days, the joint teams of SDM, DCW and Delhi Police have conducted over 100 raids and issued challans of over Rs 7 lakh, the statement said. “The teams also seized over 1,000 litres of concentrated acid by posing as decoy customers.” The government said that in one of the visits, the team seized over 240 litres from one small shop in Narela. “The acid was being sold openly and the shopkeeper even prodded the team to buy larger amounts. In another raid, over 250 litres were seized by the team in Najafgarh sub-division area. Here too, the acid was being sold without any deterrence. “In almost all shops, no records of acid stored in the shops were maintained which is in violation of the Supreme Court guidelines and orders of the Delhi government. The raids were conducted all over Delhi in over 24 sub-divisions,” the government said. Dev said he was deeply disturbed with the prevalence of acid attacks in Delhi. “I believe an acid attack is one of the most painful trauma that a human being can go through. We are strictly against the open sale of acid and shall take all measures to stop it. I have directed all SDMs and police officials to practice zero tolerance against the open sale of acid. We will leave no stone unturned for achieving an acid free Delhi,” he said. Maliwal applauded the Chief Secretary for taking this initiative. “Illegal sale of acid and more importantly easy availability of concentrated acid in the open market is a serious issue affecting Delhi. Several acid attacks could have been prevented had there been a stringent check on sale of acid,” she said.last_img read more

PrePuja Expo attracts handicraft lovers in Delhi

first_imgSetting the celebratory mood in the national capital ahead of the festive season of Durga Puja, a two-week long exhibition of exclusive and exquisite handloom and handicrafts creations of weavers and crafts persons from Bengal was inaugurated recently.The 8th Edition of ‘Bengal Pre-Puja Expo’ will go on until September 15, at Handloom Haat, Janpath. The initiative is being supported by the Departments of MSME and Textiles, Tourism, Backward Classes Welfare, Agricultural Marketing and Information and Cultural Affairs, Government of West Bengal. The Office of Resident Commissioner, Government of West Bengal, is coordinating event. Also Read – An income drop can harm brainArtisans from 12 districts of West Bengal are participating in the exposition which is aimed at promoting the rich and glorious tradition of Bengal handicrafts and handloom and also ensuring commercial benefits to the crafts persons and weavers ahead of the Durga Puja festival. The districts which are being represented are Nadia, Paschim Medinipur, Purba Bardhaman, North 24 Parganas, among others. Backward Classes Welfare Department, Government of West Bengal, has nominated 14 self-help groups to take part in the fair, so as to facilitate artisans belonging to marginalised sections of society. The exposition boasts of a range of beautiful handloom and handicrafts products, including ‘nakshi kantha’ (traditional needle craft), jute products, dokra ornaments, embroidered and hand-painted apparel, terracotta jewellery and patachitra (scroll painting). West Bengal Tourism, West Bengal Handicrafts Development Corporation, and Department of Agricultural Marketing have also set up stalls at the fair.last_img read more

Indias services sector activity eases in Aug amid softer rise in new

first_imgNew Delhi: The country’s services sector activity growth eased in August as new business inflows rose at a slower pace; following which job creation and output expansion moderated, a monthly survey showed on Wednesday. The IHS Markit India Services Business Activity Index declined from 53.8 in July to 52.4 in August, pointing to a slower rate of increase in output. In PMI parlance, a print above 50 means expansion, while a score below that denotes contraction. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscal “The weaker PMI readings for India’s service sector match the trend noted in the manufacturing industry, bringing unwelcome news of a cooling economy halfway through the second quarter of fiscal year 2019-20,” said Pollyanna de Lima, Principal Economist at IHS Markit. The IHS Markit India Composite PMI Output Index, that maps both the manufacturing and services industry, fell from 53.9 in July to 52.6 in August. Notwithstanding the decline, the composite PMI Output Index was in expansion territory for the 18th month in a row. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boost Growth of aggregate new orders moderated from July and was modest. Private sector jobs rose further in August, but the pace of expansion was slower. “Although the two surveys combined point to another round of job gains, a retreat in the rate of employment expansion highlight a wait-and-see approach among businesses who are longing for a meaningful and sustained pick-up in demand growth,” Lima said. Despite the decline, service providers remained confident of a rise in business activity in the coming 12 months, with optimism strengthening to a one-year high. Forecasts of better demand conditions, marketing initiatives and accommodative public policies all boosted sentiment in August, the survey noted. “An important development, however, is evident in a rebound in business sentiment. Both manufacturers and service providers believe that supportive public policies can help shift growth momentum into a higher gear in the coming 12 months,” Lima said. On the inflation front, the survey noted that services companies lifted their selling prices again in August. Meanwhile, India’s GDP growth fell to an over six-year low of 5 per cent in the June quarter. Besides, the growth of eight core industries dropped to 2.1 per cent in July, mainly due to contraction in coal, crude oil and natural gas production. The IHS Markit India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), released earlier this week, fell to 51.4 in August, its lowest mark since May 2018, from 52.5 in July, as most survey indicators fell since July to signal a widespread loss of momentum.last_img read more

Soul of democracy under relentless attack Ravish

first_imgNew Delhi: Senior journalist Ravish Kumar was on Friday awarded with the Ramon Magsaysay Award in Manila, for “harnessing journalism to give voice to the voiceless.” Ravish, who is a Managing Editor and news anchor with NDTV, in his speech during the ceremony, highlighted that the “soul of democracy is under relentless attack every day”. “We are living in testing times, as journalists and as common citizens,” Ravish told the gathering. Ravish who has been vocal about the growing degradation of journalistic norms and ethics said, “News channel debates take place within a vocabulary of exclusionary nationalism wherein they seek to replace the collective history and memory of the nation with that of the ruling party’s in their viewers’ minds.”last_img read more

Trade procurement and Kevin OLeary three ways politics mattered this week

first_imgOTTAWA – Politics groupies suddenly found themselves this week discussing the pros and cons of cupping, of all things, after the prime minister popped up on a podcast with telltale purple circles on his forearms.Cupping, just FYI, is an alternative therapy that involves placing suction cups on the skin to draw blood to the surface. Made famous by swimmer Michael Phelps among others. And yes, Justin Trudeau is a fan.And water coolers across the capital also overheard many a conversation about Trudeau’s admission that his father used his connections to help his brother Michel deal with a minor marijuana charge: was it a smart move to show empathy with youth? Or a sign of privilege blinding the prime minister to the need for an amnesty for small pot infractions?But chatter about cupping and privilege quickly took a back seat to far more serious matters as the week progressed. Long-standing assumptions about Canada-U.S. trade, the country’s military procurement system and the Conservative leadership were challenged to the core. Here are three ways federal politics touched Canadians this week:TRADE TURMOILIf there were any remaining believers in the theory that when U.S. President Donald Trump talked about tearing up NAFTA he was really just talking Mexico, they were converted this week.Trump has repeatedly singled out Canada in recent days for not being fair. Canada’s dairy regime hurts U.S. farmers. Canada’s lumber is too cheap and needs to face stiff duties. NAFTA should be ditched, or perhaps just renegotiated, but in a way that prevents Canada and Mexico from continuing to take advantage of American generosity. And Bombardier Inc. is way too subsidized.The federal government has confronted the accusations with lists of facts and figures, direct talks with Trump and his team, and a public plea to be reasonable and polite. Retaliation does not seem to be in the cards at this point, partly because the only material measure taken against Canada by Trump so far is a 20-per-cent lumber duty. With so much more hanging in the balance, Ottawa does not want to make matters worse.PROCUREMENT AND INTEGRITYDetails released this week about the saga of Vice-Admiral Mark Norman served as a stark reminder of the mess that is Canada’s multi-billion-dollar military procurement system.Documents obtained by the RCMP and submitted to the court in its case against Norman show in colourful relief that the omnipresent chase for military contracts is high-stakes, ruthless and endlessly political.Norman was the military’s second in command until he was suspended without explanation in January. The RCMP accuses him of leaking cabinet secrets — ostensibly to make sure he could get a supply ship built quickly by a Quebec-based shipyard.The correspondence paints a picture of military operators and competitive industry players plotting relentlessly to manipulate not just each other but also the media and elected politicians.It’s not clear yet whether Norman did anything wrong, or if he was caught in the shadowy network of lobbying and arm-twisting that has come to define procurement in Canada.Government after government has sought to reform the procurement rules and create new bureaucracies to ensure that taxpayers’ money and legitimate military goals are treated with respect. As one of the Armed Forces’ most widely respected leaders strives to clear his name, it’s obvious there’s some work to do yet.CONSERVATIVES MINUS O’LEARYThe Conservative leadership race was turned on its head this week when Kevin O’Leary — a reality TV star and a presumed front-runner in the leadership contest — suddenly pulled out and threw his support behind rival Maxime Bernier.The drawn-out contest to replace Stephen Harper will be decided on May 27, but Conservatives will see a different dynamic over the next few weeks now that O’Leary has essentially conceded to Bernier and arguably robbed some of the other 12 contenders of their focal point.O’Leary was a latecomer to the race but he injected it with profile and attitude, and challenged it with an unorthodox vision of what it means to be conservative. But he also confirmed, in the end, that the tradition of party leaders speaking both official languages is one that can’t be jettisoned with impunity — even in the age of Trumpian unorthodoxy.last_img read more

BC ticket takes Saturday nights 95 million Lotto 649 jackpot

first_imgTORONTO – The $9.5 million jackpot in Saturday night’s Lotto 649 draw was claimed by a ticket purchased somewhere in British Columbia.And the guaranteed $1 million prize went to a ticket holder in the Prairies.The jackpot for the next Lotto 649 draw on July 12 will be approximately $5 million.last_img

A bythenumbers look at homelessness among veterans in Canada

first_imgOTTAWA – The federal government plans to release this fall a new strategy to tackle veterans homelessness. Here are some figures from Employment and Social Development Canada and Veterans Affairs Canada to keep in mind:2,950: Number of veterans estimated to be shelter users in 20145: Percentage of the homeless population who are veterans according to various point-in-time counts750: Veterans identified as homeless in a Veterans Affairs database$37,769: Amount provided since April 1 from a federal fund to help veterans in financial need40: Veterans helped by that money8: Provinces where the money has been spent, with spending topping $10,000 in Ontario and Quebec$1 million: Amount per year for four years the Liberals are making available in a new emergency fund as of April 1, 201858: Percentage of veterans in a Veterans Affairs database who were over age 50 as of June 30, 201610: Delay in years, on average, between a military release and the onset of homelessnesslast_img read more

Thousands of humanwildlife conflicts reported across BC in 2017

first_imgVICTORIA – British Columbians love nature, but that draw to be in the wilderness is part of the reason the province has seen thousands of conflicts between humans and wild animals this year, a wildlife expert says.Many B.C. communities have wilderness at their doorstep and that mixture can create problems, said Adam Ford, a biology professor at the University of B.C. Okanagan.“We don’t expect to see a lot of bear conflicts in downtown Vancouver, because that’s a lot of country for a bear to get across, but it’s on the edges that we see these problems,” Ford said.People also want to get up close and personal with wildlife, which can be dangerous for both humans and animals, he added.One place the problem has grown is the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve on the West Coast of Vancouver Island.Some of the conflicts are because people are really excited to have this magical experience with a wolf on Long Beach, Ford said.“And they do things they’re not supposed to, like ‘Here’s some food, wolf’ and then wolves become conditioned. They get used to people and handouts and that’s where things go wrong.”Chris Doyle, deputy chief with the B.C. Conservation Officers Service, said there have been more than 20,000 reports of human-wildlife conflicts so far this year, ranging from cougar sightings to bear attacks.More than 14,000 of the complaints were about black bears, while another 1,500 involved cougars and 430 were about grizzly bears, Doyle said.Nearly 500 bears have been destroyed after encounters with humans, including 469 black bears and 27 grizzlies, said Mike Badry, wildlife conflict manager with ministry of environment.Another seven grizzlies were moved, nine were “hazed” to deter them from interacting with humans, and one cub was sent to a rehabilitation facility.Those numbers are “disturbing,” Ford said.“This is a very large-scale problem, when you’re thinking of that many conflicts over the entire province of B.C. That’s not one little isolated incident of someone leaving garbage out.”In August, the province said complaints about bears in communities skyrocketed, nearly doubling the figure from the same period last year.Badry said the numbers have levelled out since then and are now “pretty average” compared with previous years.“The spring and early summer was a very busy year for bear conflicts, the highest we’d seen in quite some time. But fortunately, the late summer and fall has actually been relatively quiet,” he said.An abundance of natural food sources, such as berries and fish, across much of the province is likely the reason for the drop, he added.But this time of year is rife for conflict between bears and humans, Badry said, because the animals are trying to fatten up before they begin hibernating for the winter — even if that means rummaging through trash cans.“These bears are trying to put on weight for denning throughout the winter, so they are highly motivated to find food,” Badry said.There have been a number of violent encounters between people and wildlife this year, including a pair of recent attacks on hunters.Doyle said in one case, a grizzly attacked a hunter near the B.C.-Yukon boundary, injuring the man’s head and face.He said the bear was shot and killed by the man’s hunting partner, and officers found the animal was emaciated.Last weekend, a Cranbrook resident was hunting elk in southeast B.C. when he and his son ran into a female bear and her cub.Doyle said the hunter sustained minor injuries before the bear moved off. Officers determined the animal had attacked defensively trying to protect her cub and a food source, so officers did not try to capture the bear, he added.— By Gemma Karstens-Smith in Vancouver.last_img read more

Government moves endangered caribou off island where they were hunted by wolves

first_imgThe Ontario government has launched an operation to relocate an endangered herd of caribou off the remote island on which they have been systematically hunted down by recently arrived wolves.The operation, which began on Saturday and is described by government officials as a “delicate dance”, involves rounding up the remaining caribou off Michipicoten Island in Lake Superior and transporting them by helicopter to the nearby Slate Islands.Officials with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry said they hope the relocation will allow the herd a chance to rebuild, adding the desire is to see the animals one day return to Michipicoten.No one can seem to agree on the extent of the damage to the caribou population, with community members, government officials and ministry researchers all offering different estimates about the size of the remaining herd. All agreed, however, that intervention was necessary.Michipicoten First Nation Chief Patricia Tangie, who has argued that the government waited too long to take action, also called on intangible forces in order to protect the animals she feels are vital to the community.“We request assistance from the spirit world for the protection of the caribou and the longevity of those relatives so that future generations can see them,” she said, adding she and other residents performed a pipe ceremony the day before the move in order to seek the animals’ permission for the relocation.Trouble began for the Michipicoten caribou in late 2013 or early 2014 when the waters around the island froze over, creating a rarely formed ice bridge to the mainland. Four wolves took advantage of the conditions and trekked 15 kilometres to the island, where they found a thriving herd of nearly 700 caribou.Today, government officials estimate the herd has dwindled to about 100, a figure disputed by Tangie who pegs the number between 20 and 30.Ministry officials have visited the island to collar wolves and study their interaction with the caribou, an approach that Tangie criticized as she pushed for more direct action to save the herd.The long-sought government move, which will take place over the next few days, is a complex affair involving four helicopters and several ministry officials and researchers.One “capture” helicopter will hover metres above the ground to herd and target caribou, according to a protocol for the move obtained by The Canadian Press. Officials will focus on rounding up healthy, mostly female animals, but hope to include at least one bull.One of the members of the capture crew will lean out of the chopper with a specialized “net gun” and fire a basket at the caribou with the hopes that the netting hits the back of the animal.“If placed correctly, the animal’s legs will rapidly tangle in the net,” the protocol reads.A small team including a veterinarian and handler will tie the caribou’s legs together, put on earplugs and place a blindfold over its eyes in a bid to keep it calm.“A blindfold really calms them down. It’s like having a puppy, they’ll put their head in your lap,” said Art Rodgers, a research scientist working with the ministry on the move.The veterinarian will examine the caribou and if it’s healthy, take hair, blood and fecal samples and then fit it with a tracking collar. Caribou will be placed in bags with just their heads sticking out and then sedated.Two caribou at a time will then be moved inside a transport helicopter for the trip to the Slate Islands, which should take from 45 minutes to an hour.On the other end, the veterinarian will reverse the sedation and monitor the caribou as it recovers.The animals will then be left to roam in an area free from predators, where it is hoped they will mate with other caribou on the Slate Islands and repopulate the herd.The move is not without controversy among those who pushed hardest for it. The ministry rejected a request to allow an observer from the First Nation to ride along during the relocation, citing health and safety for both humans and caribou.“We are limiting the number of people on the flights … to reduce stresses on the animals, to leave room if transportation needs change for the animals, to limit weight and fuel consumption,” said ministry spokeswoman Jolanta Kowalski. “The only people allowed on the flights are those with a direct role in the operation.”last_img read more

Snake sighting but still no success in finding missing python in Delta

first_imgDELTA, B.C. – A missing pet python named Gypsy was spotted on the Canada Day long weekend in Delta, B.C., shortly after it disappeared into a farmer’s field June 30.Delta Police say someone spotted the dark caramel-coloured snake near the Westham Island Bridge and snapped a photo, but didn’t tell an animal shelter about what they had seen until July 3.The police say the information came to light after they issues a news release about the two-metre-long ball python on Saturday.They say bylaw inspectors have made patrols of the area, but have not seen the snake, and no other sightings have been reported.Police say ball pythons are non-venomous, more docile than other types of snakes and primarily eat mice, rats and birds in the wild.They know the snake’s owner but do not know the circumstances of how the creature came to be in a farmer’s field, or even in which field it was last seen.last_img read more

Liberal leader doubles down on notion that 75 weekly grocery bill is

first_imgMONTREAL – Liberal Leader Philippe Couillard is standing by his claim that $75 is enough for a family of three to feed itself for a week, saying it just requires a lot of work and an eye for bargains.When presented the grocery question out of the blue Thursday by a radio host, Couillard answered it would be possible to feed an adult and two teenagers on that amount, acknowledging later to reporters the menu would lack meat and variety.Asked again Friday on Montreal’s 98.5 FM, Couillard said he wished people didn’t have to live on such a tight budget, but he knows some who do.“You look through all the flyers, and you shop only for what is on sale,” Couillard said. “It’s almost a full-time job.”He gave the example of a roast pork bought on special that is used in macaroni the next day, shepherd’s pie the third day and sandwiches the day after.One of the authors of Canada’s Food Price Report said $75 would not suffice.Dalhousie University Prof. Sylvain Charlebois said that in 2017 the bare minimum grocery bill for a Quebec family of two adults and two children, including one teen, would have been $149 a week, double the amount in Couillard’s example for three people.“If you live on your own, maybe, but if you have children in your home who are growing, it’s absolutely impossible,” Charlebois said.The only way to make it work on $75 would be to resort to food banks, he said. Otherwise the family would “end up with a diet that has no variety, and the nutritional value would be severely compromised.”Accused by his political opponents of being out of touch, Couillard told reporters Friday he did not regret his answer, adding the debate has shed a light on the need to fight poverty.“No, I said the truth,” Couillard said. “The question was, ‘Is it feasible?’ Yes it’s feasible. I know people who do that. Is it good? No.”It is not the first time a question about groceries has tripped up a politician.In the United States, George H.W. Bush admitted in a 1992 presidential debate with Bill Clinton and Ross Perot he didn’t know how much a gallon of milk cost.In 2007, Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani was way off when quizzed on the cost of a gallon of milk and a loaf of bread.Just last month, U.S. President Donald Trump claimed erroneously that photo identification is needed to buy groceries.Sam Watts, managing director of a Montreal food bank that provides groceries to 19,000 clients a month, said a family’s diet would be limited on $75 a week.“The issue is healthy food,” said Watts, who works at The Welcome Hall Mission.“Someone could eat macaroni seven days a week, but that’s not a good diet, and the result is it would create other problems the health system would have to resolve.”Wendy Gariepy of the West Island Mission, which serves Montreal’s western communities, called a $75 grocery budget “really tight” and put the mimimum closer to $125.A Quebec family of four last year spent on average $233 a week on groceries, Charlebois said, the third-most per capita after Saskatchewan and British Columbia.“But in Quebec, salaries are much lower, so the percentage of the food budget based on income is much higher than anywhere else,” Charlebois added.last_img read more

Cannabis paraphernalia to take a modern twist after legalization say experts

first_imgTORONTO _ Francois Ricard’s run of poking fun at the prime minister about Canada’s impending legalization of recreational cannabis may soon come to an end in Quebec even if it thrives in the rest of the country.His Just-in Canada line of products depicting Justin Trudeau riding a giant joint or flying high above Parliament Hill will be outlawed on Oct. 17 according to a new provincial law that prevents retailers from selling any items that include the cannabis leaf.“At this point my only option in Quebec is to hide the joint or the leaf image and put ‘censored’ over it,” he said in an interview.The head of the 75-year-old gift and souvenir supplier linked up with a local artist in an attempt to cash in on what Ricard expects will be growing demand for cannabis-related paraphernalia as legalization makes marijuana use more mainstream.The Quebec law will almost certainly face a constitutional challenge over freedom of expression protected by the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, says Mylany David, a lawyer who heads a working committee on cannabis at the Langlois law firm.The new Quebec government has promised to raise the age for using cannabis to 21 from 18 and prevent public consumption, but has not indicated if it will make changes to a law prohibiting sales of T-shirts and other items depicting the marijuana leaf.David said she doesn’t see how selling T-shirts with a marijuana leaf could become illegal even though consuming the drug itself will be legalized.“It’s a leaf that’s existed for thousands of years and it does not belong to the government of Quebec,” she said. “It’s not property rights of the government of Quebec to prohibit the use of it so it will be challenged because it may limit the freedom of expression, a fundamental charter right.”In the rest of Canada, sales of cannabis-monikered T-shirts, mugs and jewelry will continue and likely increase, industry observers say.Cannabis symbolism isn’t just restricted to goods sold in souvenir or head shops, says Rebecca Brown, founder of Crowns Creative, a Toronto-based advertising agency focused on the cannabis industry.It is being embraced in fashion circles, with an array of pricey clothing and jewelry that show off the cannabis leaf.“It’s this elevation of cannabis symbolism which I think is super cool and I guess it’ll be interesting to see in Canada how will that play out.”Brown believes cannabis symbolism will grow as has been the case during other big cultural shifts that captured people’s imaginations, such as the space race many decades ago.“There will be more depicted and different kinds of depiction of cannabis in many different ways as it becomes more mainstream,” she said. “Some of it will be parody and some of it will be more elevated like fashion.”The industry has been spending heavily on non-cannabis products that don’t face the same restrictions as cannabis and accessories.Producers are all ordering swag to promote their brands, said Mitch Freed, executive vice-president of sales and strategy for promotional merchandise firm Genumark.“They’re marketing like crazy,” he said in an interview.“These are billion-dollar companies that are marketing themselves very similarly to other billion-dollar companies in our country.”Freed expects branding will increase following legalization but he declined to estimate how much spending could be added to the $2-billion Canadian promotional product sector.Merchandise has always been an important part of Canopy Growth Ltd. dating back to its origins as a supplier of medical marijuana, said David Bigioni, chief commercial officer, recreational cannabis.But instead of T-shirt giveaways, the company is focusing efforts on raising awareness of its Tweed brands, he said.“You’re trying to enhance and complete what consumers need to fully realize their cannabis experience,” Bigioni says of grinders, vaporizers and other accessories.The company will also sell unique products along with shirts, vests, socks and other materials outside of Quebec that customers would want to wear, but with a modern twist.Branding is an important way to attract adult consumers to the new legal marketplace from the illicit trade, says Allan Rewak, executive director of the industry association Cannabis Canada Council.But Rewak adds that his members won’t engage in general branding that appeals to youth, is lifestyle branding or uses celebrity endorsements, all of which are illegal under the federal rules.“You’ll see some T-shirts at visitors centres and stuff like that but this will not be beer.”last_img read more

Manitoba awareness campaign aims to stop sexual harassment of civil servants

first_imgWINNIPEG — The Manitoba government is undertaking a governmentwide awareness campaign to ensure employees aren’t facing sexual harassment at work.The campaign includes six posters that explain to employees and supervisors what sexual harassment is and how to report it.The posters include messages discouraging people from making jokes or sending emails about sex or gender.Rochelle Squires, minister responsible for the status of women, says the government has also revised its respectful workplace policy by adding clearer definitions of what constitutes inappropriate behaviour.She says the policy also clarifies how reports of harassment are handled so employees know their concerns will be taken seriously.The Progressive Conservatives announced their commitment to foster a respectful workplace after female staff came forward in 2018 with allegations that a former NDP cabinet minister tickled and groped them.The women alleged that their complaints about Stan Struthers, who left politics in 2016, were never addressed.Backbencher Cliff Graydon was also kicked out of the Tory caucus last year after allegations he asked two female staff to sit on his lap and suggested another lick food off his face. Another woman alleged the member of the legislature groped her at a party function.“It’s sad that it has to be said, but harassment has no place in the workplace and every employee has the right to a workplace that is free of harassment,” Squires said on Tuesday.The minister explained the latest updates to the respectful workplace policy provide clearer procedures for reporting and addressing harassment concerns. It also clarifies potential remedies and how those solutions will be monitored.Squires said each allegation will be investigated and responded to individually.A report released last August said hundreds of civil servants had experienced sexual harassment while working but most did not report it.The most frequent harassment included leering or invading space, but many others reported inappropriate physical contact such as touching, patting or pinching.After the Struthers allegations surfaced, the government implemented a “no wrong door” approach to reporting harassment, and has made it mandatory for managers to forward any complaints to the province’s civil service commission.Squires said it is important people are aware of what actions and behaviours constitute harassment.“What might have been dismissed as a colourful or off-putting joke a decade ago … is sexual harassment,” she said.The minister added she has been working with the house Speaker on a similar policy for the legislative assembly. She could not say when it might be implemented.Kelly Geraldine Malone, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Amazing they could do that Baby who got organ donation now healthy

first_imgEDMONTON — Hailey Hague only has to look at her healthy, energetic six-year-old to know the importance of organ donation.Soon after Lily was born, she was diagnosed with biliary artresia — a disease that affects about one in every 10,000 to 20,000 infants.“Right before Lily hit three months, she went into end-stage liver failure,” says Hague. “Her eyes completely went yellow … and she was sleeping. We had to purposely wake her up to feed her and that’s not normal.”The next day, they found out her liver wasn’t working and she might need a liver transplant.Organ donation has been in the spotlight the last year after the Humboldt Broncos bus crash in Saskatchewan left 16 people dead and 13 injured. One of the players, Logan Boulet of Lethbridge, Alta., had signed up to be an organ donor in the weeks before the crash and his parents followed through with his wishes.Six people across Canada benefited from his organs. What has been called the Logan Boulet Effect soon followed.Canadian Blood Services estimates that nearly 100,000 Canadians registered to become organ donors after the Humboldt crash and the story of Boulet’s donation. Another 50,000 people registered in May.The head of the David Foster Foundation, which provides financial support to families with children who need organ transplants, says Boulet’s death shows the importance of organ donation.“Through tragedy has come action,” says Michael Ravenhill. “Because of that one young man’s selfless act, he has actually changed the landscape of organ donation in Canada.”An event called Green Shirt Day is planned for every April 7, the anniversary of Boulet’s death, to promote organ donation.The Canadian Institute for Health Information says the country has a shortage of organs, with 4,333 patients waiting for transplants. In 2017, 242 Canadians died while waiting for a transplant.The Hague family’s experience was in 2013. They moved to Edmonton from Abbotsford, B.C., to be closer to Stollery Children’s Hospital where Lily could get a transplant assessment.Family members were willing to donate part of their liver, but Lily’s portal vein — the main blood vessel to the liver — wasn’t working properly and a living donor can’t provide one.“She got moved to the transplant list because she needed a deceased donor,” says her mother.After an infection, Lily was given three months to live and was bumped up on the transplant list.“We needed to find her a donor. We needed to do something or she was not going to be here anymore,” said Hague. “I felt like I had the wind knocked out of me.”Lily was transferred to Toronto’s SickKids Hospital for treatment while she waited for a donor.“It was a blessing in disguise,” Hague says. “They told us about this new procedure … they could use the living donor’s liver and then they could take deceased vessel from someone who has passed away to create a portal vein.”A liver donation would still be her best chance at survival, but now they had another option if the next liver went to another patient.And that’s what happened.When Lily was seven months old, her mother gave her 22 per cent of her liver.“Somebody else, a little boy I think it was, passed away. His liver went to somebody else and his vessels created Lily’s portal vein,” says Hague. “It’s amazing that they could do that.”A lot of people tell her that she’s her daughter’s hero.“I don’t know,” she says. “I like to think of the little boy who donated his organ, his parents donating his organs — that’s her hero. I’m her mom.”Hague says she’s encouraged by the recent focus on organ donation.In addition to Green Shirt Day, Nova Scotia announced legislation last week that would have all residents be potential organ donors unless they opted out. It’s believed Nova Scotia would be the first jurisdiction in North America to adopt the measure.Hague says she hopes every province follows suit.“Oh my gosh, please, everywhere,” she says. “If everyone were an organ donor, could you imagine?”Colette Derworiz, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

A chronology of Canadas standoff with US over steel aluminum levies

first_imgOTTAWA — Here is a timeline of key events in Canada’s dispute with the United States over NAFTA, the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement and American tariffs on steel and aluminum:June 28, 2016: Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump declares his antipathy for the North American Free Trade Agreement in a campaign speech in Pittsburgh, in the heart of a Rust Belt state that he would eventually win to secure the presidency. “NAFTA was the worst trade deal in history,” says Trump, pledging to renegotiate the pact “to get a better deal for our workers.” He promises to leave the agreement if Canada and Mexico refuse to bargain with him.Aug. 16, 2017: Canada, Mexico and the United States begin the renegotiation of NAFTA in earnest. The Trump administration opens with a lecture, upping the ante from earlier remarks that it simply wants to “tweak” the deal. Trump’s trade czar Robert Lighthizer declares: “We feel that NAFTA has fundamentally failed many, many Americans and needs major improvement.”October: The U.S. introduces so-called “poison pills” that Canada says it simply can’t accept. The U.S. wants to increase American content in automobiles, get rid of Canada’s supply-management system in agriculture, introduce a five-year sunset clause to force regular renegotiations, do away with a dispute-settlement mechanism and reduce Mexican and Canadian access to bidding on U.S. procurement projects. The three countries do eventually reach a new deal on autos, while the U.S. backs away from the other demands.March 14, 2018: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Canada won’t be “bowled over” at the NAFTA talks by Trump. Trudeau makes the remarks while visiting steelworkers in Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. “We’re standing up for ourselves. But we know there’s a win-win-win we can get to,” Trudeau says. “We’re pushing back on some things that we think might not be the right suggestions, which is what people would expect from Canada.”May 31: Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross declares that the Trump administration is making good on its threat to slap hefty tariffs on Canadian metals exports — 25 per cent on steel and 10 per cent on aluminum — on the grounds that foreign steel dependency poses a threat to American national security. However, Ross signals clearly the tariffs are linked to the trade talks: “As to Canada, Mexico, you will recall that the reason for the deferral (of tariffs) had been pending the outcome of the NAFTA talks,” he said. “Those talks are taking longer than we had hoped.”June 7: Trump hurls a series of personal insults at Trudeau from Air Force One after a G7 summit in Quebec. The president calls Canada’s prime minister “dishonest” and “weak” after Trudeau repeats his objections to the steel and aluminum tariffs. The incident marks a new low in prime ministerial-presidential politics across the 49th parallel at a time when NAFTA negotiations remain deadlocked.July 1: Canada imposes dollar-for-dollar tariff “countermeasures” of its own on up to $16.6 billion worth of imports of steel, aluminum and other products from the U.S. — everything from flat-rolled steel to playing cards and felt-tipped pens. Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland calls the U.S. tariffs illegal and counterproductive; Trudeau calls it inconceivable that Canada could be seen as a national-security threat to the U.S.Aug. 27: Mexico and the United States announce their own bilateral trade deal after weeks of negotiations that were supposed to be only about autos. Instead they negotiated a sweeping text covering the full scope of the trading relationship. Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland blows up a trip to Europe and diverts to Washington, starting a month of intense negotiations to bring Canada into the NAFTA fold.Sept. 20: Liberal government insiders indicate that as the NAFTA talks come down to the wire, the so-called Section 232 tariffs — so named for the obscure U.S. trade-law provision under which they were imposed — remain a major sticking point. Some observers suggest negotiating the tariff dispute separately would mean a shorter path to a deal.Sept. 26: Trump strikes again, this time at the UN General Assembly: “Frankly, we’re thinking about just taxing cars coming in from Canada,” he says when asked about the stalled talks. “We’re very unhappy with the negotiations and the negotiating style of Canada,” he continues, adding, “We don’t like their representative very much” — a reference to Freeland.Sept. 30: Staring down a midnight deadline to provide a text of an agreement to Congress, Trump’s and Trudeau’s team work out last-minute details that bring Canada into a renewed continental trade pact. Trudeau leaves the Prime Minister’s Office after a late-night cabinet meeting and says six words: “It’s a good day for Canada.”Oct. 19: Liberal government officials make it clear Canada will not accept any sort of a quota restriction on steel and aluminum exports to the U.S. in exchange for lifting the tariffs. Meanwhile, Mexican officials fuel speculation that the U.S. plans to lift the tariffs once the new agreement is signed during a G20 summit in Argentina.Nov. 30: Trump, Trudeau and outgoing Mexican president Enrique Pena Nieto sign the new U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or USMCA, at the summit but there is no sign of movement on tariffs.Jan. 30, 2019: Kevin Brady, the ranking member of the House Ways and Means Committee (its senior member from the minority Republicans), sends the first clear signal that the tariffs could be a problem for both Democrats and Republicans when it comes to ratifying the new trade deal. “They’re not really willing to consider this agreement until the steel and aluminum tariffs are ensured to be lifted off, including quotas,” Brady tells a trade conference in Washington.Feb. 21: David MacNaughton, Canada’s ambassador to the U.S., declares publicly that he’s confident the tariffs will be lifted “in the next few weeks” — comments he later acknowledges were aimed at lighting a fire under recalcitrant U.S. negotiators. Later that same week, Transport Minister Marc Garneau tells a gathering of governors in the U.S. capital that Canada would struggle to ratify the agreement with the tariffs still in place. “I got the message loud and clear,” responds Larry Kudlow, Trump’s senior economic adviser.May 17: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau suddenly adds a trip to a Stelco plant in Hamilton, Ont., to his schedule. He confirms reports that an agreement on tariffs has been reached and that the levies will be gone within 48 hours. “This decision reflects what is known to be true by friends on both sides of the border,” Trudeau says. “Canada has been America’s most steadfast ally for more than 100 years, and our long-standing partnership and closely linked economies make us more competitive around the world and improve our combined security.”The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Trump promises help with Canadian detainees in China as Trudeau visits DC

first_imgU.S. President Donald Trump signalled Thursday that he will raise the issue of two Canadians detained in China when he meets with the Chinese president next week.The two Canadians have been languishing behind bars in China since shortly after Canada arrested high-tech executive Meng Wanzhou late last year at the behest of U.S. authorities.Speaking to reporters as he and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau sat in the Oval Office, Trump vowed to do whatever he could in the cases of Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig when he meets China’s President Xi Jinping at next week’s G20 leaders’ summit in Japan, if Trudeau – as expected – asks for his help.Canada has been caught in the crossfire after the RCMP arrested Meng last December in Vancouver, where she awaits extradition south of the border to face allegations of fraud in violating Iran sanctions.Trudeau doesn’t have a planned meeting with Xi, unlike Trump. The U.S.-China meeting next week is focused on a trade deal.“We have a meeting set up with President Xi and it’s obviously on the big transaction that we’re talking about and negotiating. Our people are actually speaking now. We’ll see what happens, but anything I can do to help Canada I will be doing,” Trump told reporters in the White House.“I would, at Justin’s request, I will actually bring it up.”Trudeau’s trip to Washington, including his third Oval Office visit since Trump was elected in 2016, is aimed primarily at pushing the new North American trade agreement over the finish line in both countries.Canada has started the ratification process, with legislation making its way through Parliament. Lawmakers in Mexico voted Wednesday in a landslide to ratify the deal, which U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer called “a crucial step forward.”Trump needs to persuade his Democratic opponents in the House of Representatives – in particular Speaker Nancy Pelosi – to allow the actual start of the ratification of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).Pelosi and her fellow Democrats want stronger enforcement mechanisms for the deal’s new labour and environmental provisions – and Trudeau’s visit might be just the thing needed to pry loose her support.Trump sounded upbeat in the Oval Office, saying he expected Pelosi and the Democrats would “do the right thing” and back the deal in Congress.“Let’s see what happens, but I really believe that Nancy Pelosi and the House will approve it, I think the Senate will approve it rapidly. It’s going to be very bipartisan,” the president said.“I hope politically they can do what they have to do. Now, the day after the election, it would win with a tremendous support, but we have an election coming up, but I think Nancy Pelosi is going to do the right thing.”Canada, meanwhile, has been building strong support for the new NAFTA and open borders within the U.S. and it has many American business allies in its corner.“It’s an opportunity for us, as you say, to keep talking about how we worked hard to build a great trade deal that’s good for Canadian workers, good for American workers, good for Mexican workers as well. We’re moving forward on the ratification process aligned with you,” Trudeau told Trump.Trudeau met with Pelosi shortly after his White House visit. Speaking on Capitol Hill, Pelosi said she looked forward to a “lively discussion” on global security issues and the economic relationship between the two countries, particularly regarding trade.“Canada is our trusted neighbour, our relationship is a warm one and it is an honour again to have the prime minister visit,” she said.A planned meeting between Trudeau and Mitch McConnell, the U.S. Senate majority leader, has been postponed. Trump invited congressional leaders, including McConnell and Pelosi, to a White House briefing on Iran scheduled for the same time Trudeau was to meet McConnell.The prime minister’s day could prove to be a pivotal visit to the U.S. capital not only for North American trade and Canada’s strained relationship with China, but for the campaign-bound prime minister himself. An earnest end to the tensions between Trudeau and Trump, which erupted into full view following last year’s G7 summit in Quebec, could prove useful to the governing Liberals when Canadians head to the polls this fall.Trudeau called the meeting with Trump “a really great opportunity” for the two countries “to build on the closest alliance in the world.”“Obviously today as well, on top of the great news in the Canadian and American economies, we’re continuing the work on a broad range of global issues,” the prime minister added.The two leaders said they will discuss the situation with Iran, whose Revolutionary Guard shot down a U.S. surveillance drone on Thursday morning. The move sparked competing and unverifiable accounts over where the downing occurred and deepened a conflict between the U.S. and Iran. The Guard said the drone was over Iranian airspace and U.S. said it was over the international Strait of Hormuz.“Iran made a big mistake. This drone was in international waters, clearly, we have it all documented, it’s documented scientifically, not just words, and they made a very bad mistake,” Trump said.Trump later said he believed that it might have been a rogue commander who made an error by shooting the down the unarmed, unmanned drone. Asked how the United States would respond, Trump said, “let’s just see what happens. … It’s all going to work out.”Canadian soldiers are in nearby Iraq as part of a NATO effort to train Iraqi military forces.“Obviously, we’re very concerned about the escalation by Iran recently,” Trudeau said.“We look forward to discussing with our closest ally their perspectives on this and how we can move forward as an international community.”last_img read more

Montreal marathon director resigning after death of runner over the weekend

first_imgMONTREAL — The director of the Montreal marathon says he is resigning after the death of a runner at the event over the weekend.In a statement, Dominique Piche says his decision to resign reflects his desire to be accountable.The coroner’s office in Quebec confirmed that 24-year-old Patrick Neely died Sunday after collapsing as he neared the end of the half-marathon race during the International Oasis Rock ‘n’ Roll Montreal Marathon.Questions about whether it took too long to get Neely help were raised after some witnesses said it took as long as 25 minutes.The paramedic agency serving the Montreal area said earlier this week that they are working with the promoter to figure out what happened, noting it’s the promoter who has the responsibility of providing medical assistance on site.Urgences Sante spokeswoman Veronique Tremblay says first responders were called just before 10 a.m. and Neely was getting treated nearly seven minutes later, but she says that the agency doesn’t know if anyone called before that.Piche also resigned as director of the Mont-Tremblant Ironman, Ironman 70.3 and Ironman 5i50 but said he will remain “available to ensure a smooth transition to the management of future events.”“The unfortunate events during the marathon of this past weekend, for which I publicly assumed full responsibility, as was proper in such circumstances, have led me to make this difficult decision,” he said in his statement Wednesday.The Ironman Group says it has accepted Piche’s resignation.It thanked Piche for his years of service and noted he produced Ironman events at the highest level, with exceptional results, on the global stage.This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 25, 2019.The Canadian Presslast_img read more