Tag Archives: Canada

Just in: Canada sees first strain of ‘detected’ Brazilian virus.

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Canada, with a population of more than 38 million, has recorded more than 800,000 coronavirus cases and more than 20,000 deaths.

Health authorities in Toronto announced Sunday that a resident had been diagnosed with the Brazilian variant of Covid-19, marking Canada’s first known case of the mutated virus.

The patient has been hospitalized, Toronto Public Health (TPH) said in a statement. He had recently traveled from Brazil.

TPH also said it had found the first case of the South African coronavirus variant in Canada’s largest city, though the strain had previously been detected elsewhere in the country.

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“Scientists and medical professionals are concerned that these variants are more transmissible than the original coronavirus,” TPH said.

(FILES) This file photo taken on April 29, 2020 shows an engineer holding a plastic model of the COVID-19 coronavirus at the Quality Control Laboratory at the Sinovac Biotech facilities in Beijing. – Sinovac Biotech is conducting one of the five clinical trials of potential vaccines that have been authorised in China. China would make any coronavirus vaccine it developed a “global public good” once it was put into use, President Xi Jinping told the World Health Assembly on May 18, 2020. (Photo by NICOLAS ASFOURI / AFP)

The resident with the South African strain had no recent travel history and no known contact with any recently returned travellers, TPH added.

The Brazilian variant has been blamed for a disastrous surge in infections in the Brazilian city of Manaus.

It has already been spotted in Europe, as well as Colombia and the United States.

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Toronto health authorities have now detected 27 confirmed “variant of concern” cases in the city of about 3 million people.

Canada, with a population of more than 38 million, has recorded more than 800,000 coronavirus cases and more than 20,000 deaths.

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#Newsworthy

BBNaija: Just 1 Year, 9 Months after wedding, Angel divorce Canadian wife.

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The estranged couple got married both legally and traditional in Port Harcourt, Rivers state, in April 2019.

Big Brother Naija’s Angel Ifemi Awotarigha and his Canadian wife, Felicia, have allegedly gone their separate ways barely 2 years after they said “I do.”

According to reports reaching Kemi Filani News, the Union between Angel and his woman ended over irreconcilable differences.

A further check on their various social media pages shows they have since unfollowed each other on Instagram and deleted photos of each other from their social media pages.

Recall with NoRM that 8 months ago, the couple took to social media to celebrate their one month anniversary.

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Excited Angel took to social media via his verified Instagram page to show off Felicia.

The pretty model clocked a year older on April 30, 2020, and Angel made sure to let the world know via his social media page.

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#Newsworthy

Breaking: ‘Arrested’ exec team of Huawei accuses Canada of ‘Cover up’.

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The 48-year-old daughter of Huawei’s billionaire founder Ren Zhengfei was held on a US warrant during a Vancouver stopover in December 2018, a detention that Beijing says is politically motivated.

Lawyers for detained Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou have accused Canadian police of trying to “cover-up” the illegal sharing of data from her electronic devices with the FBI ahead of her high-profile arrest in Vancouver.

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Meng, the chief financial officer of the Chinese tech giant, has been fighting extradition from Canada to the US, where she faces fraud and conspiracy charges related to alleged violations by Huawei of American sanctions on Iran.

Her defence on Thursday said the Royal Canadian Mounted Police shared her electronic device information with US authorities, alleging the Canadians and Americans conspired to breach her rights and violate Canada’s Extradition Act.

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Days later, Beijing arrested Canadians Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, in what Ottawa has insisted was a retaliatory move.

Alongside the charges of aiding Iran in breach of sanctions, the administration of US President Donald Trump has railed against Huawei over fears that adoption of its 5G technology could pose a spying risk.

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Sergeant Janice Vander Graaf, who oversaw Meng’s arresting officers, denied the cover-up the accusation, saying a review of emails had left her confident that Meng’s information was not sent to the FBI, despite previously writing in her notes that a colleague said it had been.

That officer, Constable Gurvinder Dhaliwal, has since testified that he did not tell Graaf the information had been sent. The accused sender, RCMP Staff Sergeant Ben Chang, has denied the allegation but refused to testify.

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Graaf said her memory of events had changed since she swore an affidavit last year.

“You are trying to cover up for Constable Dhaliwal and Staff Sergeant Chang in relation to this issue,” Meng’s defence lawyer Scott Fenton said in the Supreme Court of British Columbia.

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“I suggest… you tailored your evidence to suit what you think protects the RCMP in this issue.”

Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau earlier this month held firm that Canada would not bow to pressure to release Meng following fresh anger from Beijing.

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He has also raised the case of the two detained Canadians with US President-elect Joe Biden.

Meng’s extradition hearing is expected to wrap up in April 2021.

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#Newsworthy

Gambia’s genocide case against Myanmar calls Canada, Netherlands’ attention.

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The two nations will pay special attention to prosecuting gender-based violence against Rohingya, including rape.


Canada and the Netherlands will formally join The Gambia’s legal bid to hold Myanmar accountable over allegations of genocide against its mostly-Muslim Rohingya minority in a move described by observers as historic.

In a joint statement on Wednesday, Canadian Foreign Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne and his Dutch counterpart Stef Blok said the two nations were intervening in the case before the International Court of Justice in order “to prevent the crime of genocide and hold those responsible to account”.

Calling the lawsuit “of concern to all of humanity,” Champagne and Blok said Canada and the Netherlands would “assist with the complex legal issues that are expected to arise and will pay special attention to crimes related to sexual and gender-based violence, including rape”.

More than 730,000 Rohingya fled their homes in Myanmar’s Rakhine state in August 2017, crossing the border into neighbouring Bangladesh where they now live in crowded refugee camps after the military launched a brutal crackdown in the western state.

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Myanmar says the military action was a response to attacks by Rohingya armed groups in Rakhine. United Nations investigators concluded that the campaign had been executed with “genocidal intent”.

More than 730,000 Rohingya fled Myanmar and crossed into Bangladesh after a brutal military crackdown in 2017 [File: Mohammad Ponir Hossain/ Reuters]

Champagne and Blok said in filing the case at the UN court, The Gambia “took a laudable step towards ending impunity for those committing atrocities in Myanmar”.

‘Historic’
The New York-based Global Center for Justice welcomed the move by Canada and the Netherlands, calling it “nothing short of historic”.

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Akila Radhakrishnan, the group’s president, said: “Just as important as their intention to intervene is their promise to focus on gendered crimes of genocide like sexual and gender-based violence, which was central to the atrocities against the Rohingya.”

She added: “Too often, gendered experiences do not translate to justice and accountability efforts and leave the primary targets of those crimes – women and girls – behind. This is an important step forward to address that gap and Canada and the Netherlands should be applauded for this move.”

Rohingya groups also welcomed the move, and urged others to follow their lead.

“Slowly, but surely, the net is closing in on Myanmar’s leaders – they will not get away with this genocide,” Tun Khin, president of the Burmese Rohingya Organisation UK said in a statement, describing Canada and the Netherlands as being on the right side of history.

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“It is imperative that other states, including the United Kingdom, now stand on the right of justice for the Rohingya and other ethnic and religious minorities in Myanmar,” the statement added. “Justice is a core demand of all Rohingya people and particularly important for those inside the camps of Cox’s Bazar who have been forced to flee their homeland and live as refugees in a foreign state.”

Canada and the Netherlands also urged other states to support The Gambia’s legal fight, which was launched in November last year on behalf of the 57-nation Organisation of Islamic Cooperation.

In the lawsuit, the small West African country said that as a signatory to the 1948 Genocide Convention it had the obligation to prevent and punish genocide, no matter where it took place.

Relying heavily on UN reports documenting killings, mass rapes and widespread arson in Rohingya villages, The Gambia alleged Myanmar was committing “an ongoing genocide” against its Rohingya minority and called for emergency measures as a preliminary step to protect the long-persecuted minority.

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Myanmar’s leader Aung San Suu Kyi attended the initial hearings at The Hague in December last year, calling on the 17-judge panel to dismiss the case. Rejecting the genocide claims, she warned the UN judges that allowing The Gambia’s case to go ahead risked reigniting the crisis and could “undermine reconciliation”.

The panel in January ordered Myanmar to take emergency measures to protect its Rohingya population, pending the fuller case.

Myanmar will now have to regularly report on its efforts to protect Rohingya from acts of genocide every six months until a final ruling is made, a process that could take years.

Although ICJ rulings are final and binding, countries have occasionally flouted them, and the court has no formal mechanism to enforce its decisions.


#Newsworthy…

Beirut explosions: Canada FM wants to help in Lebanon blast probe.

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Canada’s foreign minister Thursday offered help in investigating the cause of the colossal port explosion that ravaged Beirut on August 4.

During a tour of the capital, Francois-Philippe Champagne stressed the need for a “credible investigation” into the blast that killed more than 180 people including two Canadians and wounded thousands.

“Canada would like, under the right circumstances, to contribute to the investigation,” he told Lebanese press.

The United States has already sent FBI investigators to assist at the request of Lebanese authorities, and France has opened its own probe.

A handout picture provided by the Lebanese photo agency Dalati and Nohra on August 27, 2020 shows Canada’s Minister of Foreign Affairs François-Philippe Champagne speaking to reporters after his meeting with the Lebanese president at the presidential palace in Baabda, east of Beirut. DALATI AND NOHRA / AFP.

Lebanon’s President Michel Aoun accepted the Canadian offer.

“We welcome the help that Canada wants to provide in the ongoing investigations over the explosion at the Beirut port,” Aoun told Champagne, according to the presidency.

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The blast came after hundreds of tonnes of ammonium nitrate had been left unsecured for several years at the port, despite repeated warnings of the dangers it posed.

Western powers, international bodies and Lebanese at home and abroad have called for an international probe into the blast, but Lebanese authorities have rejected this.

Champagne also called for “economic and political reforms” as he met Lebanon’s caretaker foreign minister Charbel Wehbe.

The Canadian minister toured Beirut neighbourhoods devastated by the blast, and met the families of the two Canadians who were killed in the disaster.

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He said Canada would contribute an additional 8 million Canadian dollars ($6 million) to aid efforts to match the contribution of Canadians via a fund launched earlier this month.

Canada, which is home to a large Lebanese community, previously pledged 30 million Canadians dollars (more than $22 million) to help after the blast.

In Lebanon’s ongoing probe, Judge Fadi Sawan has so far issued arrest warrants for 16 people.

He is next week due to start questioning six others, including the director-general of land and maritime transport and four senior security officers responsible for the port.


#Newsworthy…

Buhari felicitate with Nigerian, Kaycee Madu on his appointment as Minister of Justice in Canada.

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President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday congratulated Kaycee Madu, the first Nigerian-born individual to be appointed Minister of Justice in a Canadian government.

Madu made history on Tuesday after he was appointed Minister of Justice and Solicitor General for the Government of Alberta, in Canada, becoming the first African to be so honoured.

He is also the Provincial Secretary and Keeper of the Great Seal of the Province of Alberta.

In a statement signed by Presidential spokesman, Femi Adesina, President Buhari described the honour as “landmark and historic,” saying it once again pedestals people of Nigerian descent as go-getters, who distinguish themselves in different walks of life.

The President added that, as the first Black Justice Minister and Solicitor-General in Canada, Madu has written himself into history books, and urges Nigerians, both at home and abroad, to remain good ambassadors of their country.


#Newsworthy…

Nigerian High Commission shuts Embassy in Canada.

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The Nigerian High Commission in Ottawa, Canada, has shutdown activities indefinitely.

A statement posted on the High Commission’s website said the development followed the abuse of a system it put in place to attend to a limited number of persons due to COVID-19 protocols.

“The High Commission of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in Canada wishes to inform Nigerian communities in Canada and the general public that the mission remains closed to the public,” it said.

“The special intervention arrangement whereby emergency cases were being handled on a discretionary basis is hereby suspended.”

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According to the Commission, the system was set up to help Nigerians who had compelling passport renewal requests

“Our citizens for some reason chose to abuse this system; they would show up at the chancery without an appointment and insist on being attended to even on days when we were not open to the public at all,” the commission, however, said.

It explained that matters came to a head on Friday, August, 14th when a group showed up at the High Commission and did not let the Embassy staff attend to those who had appointments.

“They went as far as holding a female staff member who went to address them, hostage, for over twenty minutes and subjected her to physical abuse,” the commission added.

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“This kind of conduct is considered unnecessarily hostile and totally unacceptable and no embassy would tolerate conduct that puts the lives of its staff members at risk.”

While acknowledging that the closure of the airspace is limiting its ability to “bring much-needed passport booklets into the country” and is an area it will work on, the Nigerian High Commission disclosed that it is “considering ways to make our premises more secure and less susceptible to unruly behaviour and violent mob action.

Nigerians whose work or study permits have expired since March 2020, and who do not have a valid passport, have a grace period that lasts until December 31st, according to the High Commission.

“By this time, we expect to have resolved some of the challenging issues that COVID-19 has created,” the statement added.


#Newsworthy…

Storyline: China sentences another Canadian to death.

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China sentenced another Canadian to death on drugs charges Friday, the second in two days to be handed the punishment, as tensions soar between Beijing and Ottawa.

The Foshan Intermediate People’s Court in the country’s southern Guangdong province said Ye Jianhui had been sentenced for trafficking and manufacturing drugs, and would have all his assets confiscated.

According to the state-run Global Times, authorities seized more than 217 kilogrammes of white crystals containing MDMA from Ye and five others in 2016.

The rest of the group were also sentenced on Friday and one other death sentence was issued, while the others were given lesser penalties.

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It comes a day after a court in the provincial capital Guangzhou handed a death sentence to Canadian national Xu Weihong on a charge of making drugs.

Last year, China also sentenced two other Canadians to death on drug trafficking charges as ties sour between the two countries on a number of fronts including the arrest of top Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou.

Canadian pleas for clemency for the pair, Robert Lloyd Schellenberg and Fan Wei, have so far not been successful.

When asked about the latest case Friday, China’s foreign ministry said its “judicial organs handle cases independently in strict accordance with the law”.

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“We urge Canada to take immediate and effective measures to correct its mistakes and make concrete efforts to bring bilateral relations back on track,” said spokesman Wang Wenbin at a regular press briefing.

– Deteriorating ties –

Relations have deteriorated rapidly between the two countries in a number of areas over recent years.

Two other Canadian nationals have been detained by Beijing on spying charges — including a former diplomat — a move widely considered retaliation for Meng’s arrest in Canada.

The United States wants Meng extradited to face trial on charges related to Chinese telecom equipment maker Huawei’s alleged violations of US sanctions against Iran.

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In June, Beijing formally charged the two men with espionage.

Canadian foreign minister François-Philippe Champagne said before the latest sentencing that his government had told Beijing they “oppose the death penalty at every step of the way”.

Beijing keeps its data secret about the number of death sentences it carries out every year.

But according to Amnesty International, China is the world’s top executioner, with thousands believed to be killed each year.


#Newsworthy…

Just in: China charges Canadian to death over drug charge

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A Chinese court sentenced a Canadian national to death on Thursday in a ruling that could further inflame tensions between China and Canada.

The Guangzhou Intermediate Court said in a statement it had handed Xu Weihong a death sentence for manufacturing drugs, and said all his personal property would be confiscated.

According to China’s state-run Global Times, Xu had bought raw materials and tools for drug production in October 2016 and worked with an accomplice, Wen Guanxiong, to make ketamine.

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The drugs were made in Wen’s home and stored in Xu’s residence in Guangzhou, with public security officers seizing over 120 kilogrammes of ketamine from the pair, the report added.

The ruling comes after China sentenced two other Canadians to death on drug trafficking charges last year, and as tensions soar between the two countries on a number of fronts including the arrest of top Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou.

In this file photo taken on May 8, 2019, Turnisa Matsedik-Qira, of the Vancouver Uyghur Association, demonstrates against China’s treatment of Uighurs while holding a photo of detained Canadians Michael Spavor (L) and Michael Kovrig outside a court appearance for Huawei Chief Financial Officer, Meng Wanzhou at the British Columbia Supreme Court in Vancouver. Jason Redmond / AFP

Beijing has also detained two Canadian nationals, including a former diplomat, on spying charges, in a move widely considered retaliation for Meng’s arrest in Canada.

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The United States wants Meng extradited to face trial on charges related to the Chinese telecom equipment maker’s alleged violations of US sanctions against Iran.

On Thursday, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin told a regular briefing that “Chinese judicial organs handle all criminals of different nationalities according to law”.

Referring to the latest case involving Xu, Wang added: “I don’t think this should have any impact on China-Canada relations.”

Diplomatic tensions
Diplomatic relations between Canada and China have deteriorated over China’s arrests and Meng’s case, damaging trade between both countries.

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Canadian pleas for clemency for its citizens previously sentenced on drug charges, Robert Lloyd Schellenberg and Fan Wei, have so far not been successful.

Meanwhile, in June Beijing formally charged the other pair of detained Canadians — ex-diplomat Michael Kovrig and businessman Michael Spavor — for spying, in a move that came just weeks after a key ruling in the Meng case.

A file photo of the Chinese President, Xi Jinping (Noble Reporters Media)

A Canadian judge had ruled that proceedings to extradite her to the United States will go ahead.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau expressed disappointment with the formal charges in June, renewing calls for their release.

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Monthly consular visits for Kovrig and Spavor have been suspended since the coronavirus outbreak started in China as well, sparking concerns over their health.

Although China’s foreign ministry insisted the pair were in good health, people familiar with the matter have told AFP they endured hours of interrogation and in the first six months of detention were forced to sleep with the lights on.

China keeps data secret about the number of death sentences it carries out every year.

But according to Amnesty International, China is the world’s top executioner, with thousands believed to be killed each year.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: Pastor ‘locked up’ in Myanmar for defying lockdown ban

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A Canadian preacher who claimed Christians were safe from coronavirus was on Thursday jailed for three months in Myanmar after he and dozens of his followers became infected when he held a banned service.

The Southeast Asian nation has so far weathered the pandemic well with just 357 confirmed cases and six deaths, although the low numbers tested make many fear the true figures are far higher.

Toronto-based David Lah, 43, was born in Myanmar and often returns to his motherland to preach.

The country imposed a ban on gatherings in mid-March, but footage emerged in early April of Lah holding a service in Yangon.

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“If people hold the Bible and Jesus in their hearts, the disease will not come in,” he proclaimed in one video to a roomful of faithful.

“The only person who can cure and give peace in this pandemic is Jesus.”

Lah tested positive for coronavirus shortly afterwards, and dozens of confirmed cases were traced back to his followers.

Canadian pastor David Lah, speaks to the media outside a township court in Yangon on August 6, 2020, accused of holding a church service amid restrictions in place to halt the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus. – A Canadian preacher who claimed Christians were safe from coronavirus was on August 6 jailed for three months in Myanmar after he and dozens of his followers became infected when he held a banned service. (Photo by Sai Aung Main / AFP)

The preacher was arrested after recovering from the illness in May and faced up to three years in jail for violating the Natural Disaster and Management Law.

On Thursday, however, a Yangon court chose to be lenient.

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Lah and his colleague Wai Tun had been sentenced to three months imprisonment, Lah’s lawyer Aung Kyi Win told reporters outside the court, adding that time already served would be deducted.

A waiting crowd of the preacher’s followers erupted into cheers and celebrations at the news.

A police vehicle carrying Canadian pastor David Lah arrives at a township court for a hearing in Yangon on August 6, 2020, accused of holding a church service amid restrictions in place to halt the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus.(Photo by Sai Aung Main / AFP)

The scandal even touched Myanmar’s Christian vice-president Henry Van Thio and his family, who had attended an earlier service with Lah in February, although they later tested negative.

About six percent of Buddhist-majority Myanmar’s population identifies as one of the various Christian denominations in the country.


#Newsworthy…

Canadian PM under pressure ahead ‘ethics’ probe testimony

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Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will appear before Parliament Thursday to deliver much-anticipated testimony about his awarding of a lucrative government contract to an organization that had previously paid members of his family.

Trudeau, the subject of an ethics investigation, is expected speak before the Finance Commission at 3 pm (1900 GMT) for about an hour, an exceptional move for a Canadian head of government.

Both main opposition parties on Wednesday again called on Trudeau, who heads a minority government, to resign.

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Trudeau apologized for the affair on July 13, saying he made a “mistake” in not recusing himself from discussions about awarding a student scholarship fund government contract to WE Charity that was initially estimated at CAN$990 million (USD $662 million).

Canada’s youth minister has said the program’s final value actually came out to about CAN$500 million, local media reported.

The charity has given up the program, but the controversy remains. The organization could have already received more than CAN$40 million, according to reports.

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WE Charity has said it paid Trudeau’s mother and brother nearly CAN$300,000 for speaking engagements in recent years.

Trudeau’s wife was paid CAN$1,500 for an event in 2012, before her husband became the leader of the Liberal Party.

In this file photo Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks during a news conference on January 9, 2020 in Ottawa, Canada. Dave Chan / AFP

‘Half a million dollars’
A spokesman for the opposition Conservative Party on Wednesday also accused WE Charity of reimbursing Trudeau relatives another CAN$212,000 in travel expenses.

“We have half a million dollars from WE to the Trudeau family,” spokesman Pierre Poilievre said, in calling for a second Ethics Commission investigation into the prime minister.

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The Conservatives are basing their numbers on testimony given by WE Charity’s co-founders Craig and Marc Kielburger to the Finance Commission on Tuesday.

“We were not chosen for this work by public servants because of our relationship with politicians,” the brothers insisted during their four-hour appearance.

Finance Minister Bill Morneau, who has also found himself ensnared in the matter as a second subject of the ethics investigation, said last week that he had paid back more than CAN$41,000 in travel expenses to the charity.

Morneau also apologized for his involvement in discussions about disbursing contracts to WE Charity, as one of his children is employed by the organization.

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Morneau’s reimbursement check was meant to cover expenses incurred by the charity over two humanitarian trips he and his family took in 2017.

The scandal has damaged Trudeau in public opinion polls, but his party is still positioned well for an early election, according to the average of four polls cited by Canadian public broadcaster CBC.

More than half of the country — 53 percent — said they now have a lower opinion of Trudeau than they did a month ago, according to one such poll.

The prime minister has run afoul of the ethics commissioner on two previous occasions since 2017 for conflict of interest violations.


#Newsworthy…

Just in: Canada ‘yes’ Ebola drug for COVID-19 cure

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Canada on Tuesday gave the green light for people with severe symptoms of COVID-19 to be treated with the anti-viral drug remdesivir.

“Remdesivir is the first drug that Health Canada has authorized for the treatment of COVID-19,” said the health ministry.

At least two major US studies have shown that remdesivir can reduce the duration of hospital stays for COVID-19 patients.

Washington authorized the emergency use of the medicine — which was originally intended as a treatment for Ebola — on May 1, followed by several Asian nations including Japan and South Korea.

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Canada said Tuesday it can be used on COVID-19 patients who have pneumonia and need extra oxygen to help them breathe.

The doses used in Canada will be made by a unit of Gilead Sciences, the US pharmaceutical company that developed the drug.

This file photo taken on April 8, 2020 shows one vial of the drug Remdesivir during a press conference about the start of a study with the Ebola drug Remdesivir in particularly severely ill patients at the University Hospital Eppendorf (UKE) in Hamburg, northern Germany, amidst the new coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. Ulrich Perrey / POOL / AFPcbi

In early July, the European Commission also authorized use of remdesivir to treat the coronavirus.

As of Tuesday, Canada was reporting 114,800 cases of the virus and more than 8,900 fatalities.


#Newsworthy…

Canada demands huge fine from Facebook over Privacy mislead claims.


Facebook has agreed to pay a Can$9 million (US$6.5 million) fine for making false or misleading claims about its privacy settings, Canada’s competition watchdog announced Tuesday.

An investigation of the social media network’s practices from 2012 to 2018 found that the company gave Canadians the impression that users could control who saw their personal information on Facebook and Messenger.

But it allowed their data to be shared with third party developers, the Competition Bureau said in a statement.

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“Canadians expect and deserve truth from businesses in the digital economy, and claims about privacy are no exception,” said competition commissioner Matthew Boswell.

He noted that Facebook had vowed publicly to stop the practice in 2015 but continued to allow third-party access to its users messages and posts until 2018.

As part of the settlement, Facebook has agreed not to make false or misleading representations about the disclosure of personal information, and pay the Competition Bureau’s Can$500,000 investigation costs.

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The company has about 24 million users in Canada.

In February, Canada’s privacy commissioner took Facebook to court for violating privacy laws. The company has called it overreach and has asked a judge to quash the case.


#Newsworthy…

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Many Missing, One Dead As Canadian Helicopter Crash.

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A Canadian sailor’s body has been found amid debris from a navy helicopter that crashed during a NATO operation in the sea between Greece and Italy, officials said Thursday.

Five other crew members from the Cyclone Sikorsky CH-148 helicopter are still missing..

It was returning to the Canadian warship HMCS Fredericton after a training mission when contact was lost on Wednesday evening.

“Yesterday, a Royal Canadian Navy helicopter on a NATO mission, carrying six members of the Canadian Armed Forces, went down with all hands in the Ionian Sea off the coast of Greece,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told a news conference in Ottawa.

“One casualty was recovered and five are missing,” he said.

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A Greek military officer said the debris had been found “in Italy’s zone of control and intervention,” specifying the wreckage belonged to the Canadian helicopter.

The Canadian frigate and submarine-hunting helicopter were 100 days into a NATO mission, aimed at deterring Russia.

More than 900 Canadian soldiers are deployed throughout Eastern Europe as part of Operation Reassurance Canada’s largest current international military deployment.

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Canadian Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan said the cause of the crash was “unknown,” but that an automatic beacon was located in the waters moments after contact was lost, and the helicopter’s cockpit voice and flight data recorders had since been recovered.

At the time of the accident the crew and allied ships were “not conducting surveillance or targeted operations on any particular vessel, adversary or otherwise”, Canada’s chief of the defence staff, General Jon Vance, said.

“We can’t rule anything out but I’m quite certain from a military situation, (the helicopter crash) was not a function of contact or shootdown,” he said.

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Canada’s top general said a “very sizeable debris field” had been found and that a search and rescue operation continues in the 3,000-feet (900-meter) deep sea.


‘Air, sea search’


Vance also confirmed that the body of Sub Lieutenant Abbigail Cowbrough was recovered from the crash site.

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Her father Shane Cowbrough said in a social media post he was “broken and gutted” by the loss of his eldest daughter.

“There are no words,” he said.

The two pilots, Captain Brenden MacDonald and Captain Kevin Hagen, as well as Captain Maxime Miron-Morin, Sub-Lieutenant Matthew Pyke and Master Corporal Matthew Cousins were also confirmed missing.

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NATO ships and aircraft were taking part in the search, supported by Greece, Italy, Turkey and the United States, Juanita Chang, spokeswoman for Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE), said.

Initial reports said the helicopter had been over international waters 50 nautical miles (93 kilometers) off Kefalonia.

Around the time of the crash, Italian, Greek and Turkish frigates were taking part in naval exercises along with the Canadians.

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Chang said the Fredericton was part of NATO’s Standing Maritime Group Two and had recently sailed from the base of Souda on Crete on a mission of “maritime situational awareness in the Mediterranean”.

The group “performed several exercises with units of the Turkish navy followed with exercises with the (Greek) navy and air force this past week,” Chang said.

HMCS Fredericton had left Canada on January 20 and was scheduled to return to its home port of Halifax in July.

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During the crash investigation to follow and in order “to rule out that there’s a fleet-wide problem”, all of the Canadian military’s relatively new Cyclone helicopters would be grounded temporarily, Vance said.

He noted only one other accident involving the helicopters, in which strong winds had “knocked the helicopter around”, since they started to be deployed in 2015, replacing a fleet of aging Sea Kings.


#Newsworthy…

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COVID-19: Canada closes border to Non-canadians.


Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, has announced that the country is closing its borders to anyone who is not a citizen of the country, an American or a permanent resident.

The country is taking more aggressive measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus, as the prime minister, sked all Canadians to say home amid the pandemic.


There will be exceptions, such as airline workers and those with families in Canada.

“We recognize the level of integration of our two economies puts the US in a separate category from the rest of the world,” Trudeau said, adding that the situation could change in the coming days.

“We are not closing the door to any measure that could keep Canadians safe.”

The Canadian government is also mandating air carriers to screen passengers with symptoms of the novel coronavirus out of lines so they don’t board planes home.


#Newsworthy. .

Group tackles Buhari over insecurity, poverty rate in Nigeria


A group, Concerned Nigerians in Canada, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately resign from office following the rising spate of insecurity and poverty in the country.

Decrying latest attacks on helpless citizens by Boko Haram terrorists in the North-East region of Nigeria, the group said that the administration of Buhari had failed woefully in protecting Nigerians and creating avenues for economic empowerment for the people.


In a statement by Convener of the group, Olujimi Adekanle, and addressed to House of Commons Government of Canada, Catholic Archdiocese of Canada, Amnesty International among others, Concerned Nigerians in Canada disclosed that they would soon embark on a global protest against the government of President Buhari for failing to deliver on promises made before coming into office.

The statement reads, “We want to register our fears and utter disappointment at the leadership and government of President Muhammed Buhari.


“Events and heart-breaking happenings in our country as a result of gross incompetence of the Buhari administration can no longer be tolerated judging by the humongous negative effect they are having on our nation.

“We unequivocally submit that Buhari’s government has failed in all departments of governance and he has become nothing but a puppet in the hands of his cabal.


“The recent infighting between the National Security Adviser, General Monguno (retd), and Buhari’s Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari, is a signal that all is not well with Nigeria’s security system. Buhari has totally lost it.

“Nigeria went in search of solution and elected a problem, today we have graduated to the third position in global terrorism index after Syria and Iran.


“What is obvious to the whole world is that rather than face good governance and delivery of his campaign promises for public good, Buhari and his cohorts have continued to engage in lethargic divisive ethnic and sectarian sentimentality with alarming impunity.

“We can no longer entrust our collective destiny in the hands of such wicked leaders and therefore call on Nigerian patriots world over to rise up to this occasion to join us to resist Buhari’s government of total failure.

“We want to assure you that a protest will be staged round the globe to finally end a grossly incompetent and self-centred government.

“We beckon on all well-meaning Nigerians to support us in our quest to take our Nigeria back from evil leaders benefiting from terror in our nation.”


#Newsworthy…

Prince Harry, Meghan Markle keeps finding more security at canada


The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have increased security at their home in Canada, according to reports.

Prince Harry and Meghan’s rented mansion in North Saanich, Vancouver Island, has a new security camera along the beach, plus a tarpaulin hanging between two trees, TMZ has claimed. The Mille Fleurs mansion, worth £10 million, also has a large white tarpaulin covering the metal gates and “No Trespassing” signs.


The couple – along with their son Archie – are living in Canada as they prepare to drop their HRH titles and quit the monarchy for a life of personal and financial freedom. The family-of-three will now split their time between the UK and North America. In one of his final engagements before flying to Canada last month, Harry told guests at a charity dinner for Sentebale that the UK will always be his home and that he and Meghan had hoped to serve the Queen and country.

“The UK is my home and a place that I love. That will never change,” he said. “I have grown up feeling support from so many of you, and I watched as you welcomed Meghan with open arms as you saw me find the love and happiness that I had hoped for all my life.” He continued: “I will continue to be the same man who holds his country dear and dedicates his life to supporting the causes, charities and military communities that are so important to me. Together, you have given me an education about living. And this role has taught me more about what is right and just than I could have ever imagined. We are taking a leap of faith – thank you for giving me the courage to take this next step.”

Buckingham Palace previously said the Sussexes’ new life away from royal duties will begin in the spring of this year. Royal watchers will be waiting to see whether the pair, who are president and vice-president of the Queen’s Commonwealth Trust, will put in an appearance at the annual Commonwealth Day service with the royal family at Westminster Abbey in London on 9 March.


#Newsworthy…

Saudi teen called out for wearing bikini in Canada


A young woman from Saudi Arabia who fled to Canada, has been abused and shamed after she shared before and now photos to celebrate her freedom from “being forced to wear black sheets”.

Rahaf Mohammed al-Qunun moved to Canada following her escape from Saudi Arabia (read here). Afterwards, she went online to share an old image of herself in a niqab and another where she was wearing a bikini.

She captioned the photo: “The biggest change in my life.. from being forced to wear black sheets and being controlled by men to being a free woman.”


Her post earned her criticisms from Twitter users in her native country. They called her out for making herself “naked.”

One Twitter user said: “I really feel sad for people like you, Saudi woman are living in happiness, they are living a normal live they drive, go malls and now they travel alone, plus our prophet Muhammad said that women and men are equal.”


Another said: “I was checking her previous posts and got to know that she literally got all this fame because she threw hijab away and started clothing like in the second picture.”

Qunun fled Saudi Arabia in January 2019 and barricaded herself in her hotel, saying she was escaping abuse from her family. She escaped her family while they were visiting Kuwait then flew to Bangkok. She was denied entry by immigration police and her passport was seized. She then took her case to social media, sparking the hashtag #SaveRahaf, and posted video of herself using a table to block the door to her hotel room.

She also renounced Islam and declared herself an atheist, saying: “Physical, emotional and verbal abuse and being imprisoned inside the house for months. They threaten to kill me and prevent me from continuing my education. They won’t let me drive or travel. I am oppressed. I love life and work and I am very ambitious but my family is preventing me from living.”

As a result of her campaign, she was given UN protection and she chose to fly to Canada after being granted asylum there.


#Newsworthy…

Ukraine plane crash: 57 died, not 63 – Canada minister


Canada’s foreign affairs minister, Francois-Philippe Champagne said the number of Canadian citizens in the ill-fated Ukraine Airlines plane is 57, not 63 as initially claimed.

Champagne said the new figure was based on the latest information available in the crash of Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 on Wednesday. None of the 176 passengers and crew aboard the airliner survived.

“This is a very fluid situation. We said that from the get-go in terms of identifying the number of victims which would be Canadians on board,” said Champagne told reporters on Friday.

Canada’s foreign affairs minister, Francois-Philippe Champagne


The lower total was arrived at based on additional information about birth dates and comparing travel documents, he said.

Meanwhile Canada is joining Iran to investigate the crash. Prime Minister Trudeau, US President Trump and Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson believe the plane was shot down by Iran’s anti-missile system in error.


#Newsworthy…

Meghan markle returns to canada

...after decision to step down as senior royalty


Meghan Markle has gone back to Canada where she left baby Archie with a nanny as she and Harry returned to the UK for their bombshell royal exit announcement.

She flew back after being in the UK for just three days, following their 7-week holiday, and left Harry to hold crisis talks with the Queen, Prince Charles and Prince William on their split from the Royal Family.


According to Media, Meghan, 38, will rejoin eight-month-old Archie in Vancouver, and is expected to stay there for the foreseeable future. Harry, 35, is staying in Britain to host the Rugby League World Cup 2021 draw next week.

It is thought the pair didn’t want their son to suffer jet lag flying ten hours to and from Canada inside five days.


A source said: “It was only a flying visit for Meghan. She wanted to get back ‘home’ to Archie.”

Meghan Markle flies back to Canada where Archie has been with nanny


He is thought to have been left with his nanny while his parents travelled to the UK.

A Buckingham Palace source revealed staff have been ordered to unravel difficulties resolving Meghan and Harry’s future as fast as possible.

Archie & Prince Harry


Her Majesty has held a crunch meeting of the four households as she dialled in from Sandringham, Charles from Scotland, William on the phone in London and Harry speaking from home in Windsor.

A source revealed: “The Queen, The Prince of Wales and The Duke of Cambridge have directed their teams to work together at pace with Governments and The Sussex Household to find workable solutions.”

They added: “[It’s] expected to take days not weeks.”


#Newsworthy…

Mother cried after death of her children in canada

…says I’ve lost it all


Uche Osagie, a Nigerian mother who lost her three children in a car accident which occurred on New Year’s Day has cried out.

Narrating how the devastating and unimaginable loss occurred, Uche said her three children died in the collission which took place at northern Ontario highway while on her way to file an appeal for permanent status in Canada.

The Nigerian mother who fled Nigeria eight years ago with her two oldest children for a better life in Canada, said she was travelling to Toronto to get a lawyer to file a federal appeal after receiving a letter that her second appeal had been denied.

I lost it all - Nigerian Mother speaks after her three children

The distraught mother said;

“I thought I was doing the best thing for them to bring them to Canada to give them a better life, but I don’t know anymore.

“The celebration they longed for, they are no longer here to celebrate. So, to me, I think I’m a loser. I lost it all. All my fight, everything, is in vain and I ask myself, once again, and I keep asking God, ‘Why did you keep me?’ You should have taken me and let those children have a better future. It’s all about them. I lived all my life for those kids.”

Flags are reportedly flying half-mast at Chelmsford Public School in Greater Sudbury community of Chelmsford where all three children; Destiny, Flourish, and Britney attended.


#Newsworthy…

(Video) Indian students deported from Canada. Reasons.

…for alleged fake IELTS test result.


A video which has gone viral on social media, captured moment a large number of Indian students allegedly deported from Canada were waiting for the flight back home at Pearson International Airport.

The Indian students were allegedly deported after it was discovered that they used fake IELTS results to secure admission in the country.


Twitter user, @theTameemZaqtan who shared a video from the airport wrote;

A big number of Indian students deported from Pearson International Airport after their IELTS test results were found to be fake

Indian students allegedly deported from Canada for allegedly using fake IELTS test results to secure admission (video)

Video


#Newsworthy…

Two Canadian Rapper Shot To Death At Different Spot.

Two Canadian rappers, Bvlly and Why-S have been shot dead in Canada, hours from each other.

While Bvlly was killed at around 3am on Tuesday morning, Why-S died in a shooting in South Surrey, British Colombia, late on Monday night.

Twenty four-year old Bvlly, real name Jahquar Stewart, was reportedly shot outside of a townhouse, according to police and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Just as the city was reeling from Bvlly’s death, news came that another rising Toronto star, Why-S, died in a separate shooting in South Surrey, British Colombia, late on Monday night.

Canadian media reported: “Homicide investigators were called to South Surrey Tuesday morning where he was found dead in a home. Surrey RCMP was called to 152 Street near 22nd Avenue just before 9.30pm on Monday.”

No arrest about the two fatal shootings has been made yet. Bvlly released his popular Made In Austria project in September, and more recently featured on the 6ixBuzz playlist NorthernSound.

He also featured on big records with 3MFrench including the 5ive Beatz-produced hit 7am in London. Earlier this month he released the video for his new single Jungle, featuring Mack Dizzle. Why-S also featured on the 6ixBuzz playlist and had two big videos this year with John Wick and Swag Mine.

One Twitter user said: “That’s so f****d up. They killed Bvlly and Why-S the same night.” Another tweeted: “Please let there be peace in hip hop.”

#Newsworthy…