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Canada

The European Union is sizing up Britain for a post-Brexit free trade deal along the lines of one it agreed last year with Canada, people familiar with talks among national envoys on Tuesday told Reuters.

Chief negotiator Michel Barnier has long cited the Canadian example, and since EU leaders agreed last month to ready negotiations on the future relationship with the UK, the 27 states have looked closely at the Canadian trade deal as a model, given British demands, EU diplomats said.

Prime Minister Theresa May has ruled out staying in the EU single market, with its obligations of free migration, EU budget payments and obeying EU courts, and so diplomats concluded these terms rule out the models followed by Norway, and by Switzerland which has a web of bilateral agreements.

“From the red lines they have we know there are some things that are clearly off limits and that was clear today,” one of the people familiar with Wednesday’s roundtable discussion said. reuters.com
Despite the eagerness of some trading partners, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Canada is in no hurry to sign a revised Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) this week at the APEC summit in Vietnam.

"Let me remind everyone Canada will not be rushed into a deal that is not in the best interest of Canada and Canadians.

I have always been very clear that I will stand up for Canadian jobs, for Canadian values, that's exactly what we will do here," he told reporters at a joint news conference with Vietnamese prime minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc after an official state visit.

While some observers thought TPP was left for dead after U.S. President Donald Trump pulled his country out of the agreement in January, the other 11 original signatories, including heavyweights like Canada, Japan, Australia and New Zealand, have pressed ahead with talks to secure a pact that would eliminate tariffs on industrial and farm products across a bloc whose trade totalled $356.3 billion last year.

Trade ministers, including Canada's François-Philippe Champagne, are meeting in Da Nang, the site of the APEC meeting, to hammer out a revised deal before national leaders descend on the resort town later this week.

Canada is pushing for the addition of more "progressive" elements to the trade deal, much like what the country's negotiators have called for in the ongoing NAFTA talks – in particular, Canada has sought the inclusion of chapters on the environment, labour rights and gender equality, sources told CBC News. cbc.ca
Canada imposed sanctions on Friday against 30 Russian officials whom it said were complicit in the 2009 prison death of Sergei Magnitsky, an anti-corruption lawyer who was jailed after alleging a massive tax fraud.

The measures -- which freeze the assets of the officials and bar them from visiting Canada -- were enacted through a new law giving the government the right to penalize those it says are guilty of human rights violations, the foreign ministry said in a statement.

Among those targeted are Alexander Bastrykin, Russia’s top investigator and a close aide to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The United States blacklisted him in January 2017, citing Magnitsky’s death.

“Today’s announcement sends a clear message that Canada will take action against individuals who have profited from acts of significant corruption or who have been involved in gross violations of human rights,” said Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland. reuters.com
Canada’s highest court has given developers the green light to build a 6,250-bed ski resort on land considered sacred by an indigenous community in British Columbia, in a landmark court case that pitted religious rights against the controversial project.

The case centred around a proposal for a year-round ski resort on the site of an abandoned sawmill in south-eastern British Columbia.

Plans for the Jumbo Glacier Resort include as many as 23 ski lifts, a gondola to ferry visitors into the soaring mountain peaks as well as accommodation for thousands of overnight guests.

The project met with stiff resistance from the Ktunaxa Nation, whose traditional connection to the land stretches back millennia – for hundreds of generations they have revered the area, which they call Qat’muk, as home of the Grizzly Bear Spirit.

The community worried that development would drive away the spirit – who figures prominently in their religious beliefs – turning their prayers and ceremonies into empty gestures.

They pursued the issue in court, arguing that the destruction of their sacred site was a violation of their religious freedom. theguardian.com
Former Fox News host Bill O'Reilly has hit back at presenter Megyn Kelly's "incomprehensible" comments involving reports of sexual harassment at the news channel, US media report.

Ms Kelly said Mr O'Reilly's suggestion that nobody had complained about his behaviour at Fox was "false". "I know because I complained," she said.

Mr O'Reilly retorted: "I don't know why [Kelly] is doing what she's doing. I've helped her dramatically in her career."

Mr O'Reilly has denied any wrongdoing.

In an interview with radio host Glenn Beck on Monday, Mr O'Reilly said he had "never had a problem" with Ms Kelly.

"When she was getting hammered earlier this year, I wrote a column sticking up for her," he said.

Mr O'Reilly said that he was not going to "run and hide" from allegations of sexual harassment at the company, but added that he wanted the story to "go away because it's brutalising my family." bbc.com
The U.S. Army secretly dumped a carcinogen on unknowing Canadians in Winnipeg and Alberta during the Cold War in testing linked to weaponry involving radioactive components meant to attack the Soviet Union, according to classified documents revealed in a new book.

Between July 9, 1953 and Aug 1, 1953, six kilograms of zinc cadmium sulfide was sprayed onto unsuspecting citizens of Winnipeg from U.S. Army planes.

The Army returned 11 years later and repeated the experiments in Suffield, Alta. and Medicine Hat, Alta., according to Lisa Martino-Taylor.

Local governments had no knowledge of these experiments, according to documents obtained by Martino-Taylor, a professor of sociology at St. Louis Community College and author of “Behind the Fog: How the U.S. Cold War Radiological Weapons Program Exposed Innocent Americans.”

Instead, they were fed a cover story by the Pentagon.

“In Winnipeg, they said they were testing what they characterized as a chemical fog to protect Winnipeg in the event of a Russian attack,” Martino-Taylor said. nationalpost.com
Days after Justin Trudeau told the United Nations that his government was working hard to improve the quality of life for indigenous peoples in Canada, it has emerged that his government spent more than C$110,000 ($88,000) in legal fees to avoid spending C$6,000 on orthodontics for a First Nations teenager suffering from chronic pain.

The figures, released through the Access to Information Act, were made public by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation on Friday. 

They relate to a continuing court battle that has pitted the federal government against Josey Willier, a teenager from Sucker Creek First Nation, who for two years complained of chronic headaches and jaw pain stemming from an impacted tooth and a severe overbite.

In 2014, two orthodontists warned that without braces, Willier would eventually need invasive jaw surgery.

One noted that Willier’s condition would probably worsen and could leave her with difficulties in eating and speaking. theguardian.com