True North Initiative: News Scan 06 14 17

TOP STORIES

Trudeau policy causes major backlog of private refugee sponsorships

The Trudeau government’s focus on rushing in government-sponsored refugees from Syria has caused a huge backlog to accumulate in the private sponsorship program that utilizes charities and churches for support. And Trudeau’s political decisions may be putting lives at risk. (Toronto Sun)

Second man who lost fingers to frostbite in trek across Canadian border gets refugee status

More than five months after he almost froze to death walking across the Canada-United States border, eventually losing his fingers to frostbite, Razak Iyal was granted refugee status Tuesday. “If I go back to Ghana, I might lose all my life. But here I am, I just lost my fingers, but I’m still part of the society,” Iyal, 35, said after his closed-door Immigration and Refugee board hearing. (Toronto Star) (CBC)

Detention of Mexicans in Canada spiked since country lifted visa requirement

Detention of Mexican citizens in Canada has spiked since December, when the government lifted its visa requirement for visitors from Mexico, figures obtained by Reuters show, even as Canada burnishes its image as more welcoming than the United States. Detentions in the first five months of 2017 were more than twice the previous two years combined, according to Canada Border Services Agency statistics provided last week in response to a Reuters request. (FOX)

Ability of terrorists to shield communications will be discussed at Ottawa meeting

The ability of terrorists to shield their communications from police and spies will be a focus for the Five Eyes intelligence alliance at a closed-door meeting in Ottawa this month. Public security ministers and attorneys general from Canada, the United States, Britain, Australia and New Zealand will gather with their intelligence officials for highly sensitive talks during the last week of June. (CP24) (Global)

Calgarian acquitted of terrorism charges after 13 months in Algerian jail

An Algerian court has acquitted a Calgary man who spent more than a year in prison in that country accused of belonging to a terrorist organization. Abderrahmane Ghanem, 30, was arrested in May 2016 in Algiers while travelling with family. He was charged with belonging to a terrorist organization and could have faced up to 20 years in prison. (Calgary Herald)

Trudeau says U.S. was consulted before approving Chinese takeover of Norsat

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Tuesday that Ottawa consulted the United States and other allies before approving the sale of a Canadian satellite technology firm to a Chinese communications giant, but he would not say whether the U.S. raised any objections. “Every transaction of this type that falls under the Investment Canada Act is carefully assessed by all national security agencies,” Mr. Trudeau told the House of Commons. “On top of that, we do consult with our allies, and in this case directly consulted with the United States on this situation.” (Globe and Mail)

London fire: What we know so far

Six people have died and more than 50 people are in hospital after a huge fire engulfed a west London tower block on Tuesday night. The building is still on fire and many people are unaccounted for. (BBC)

Russian cyberattack on U.S. election — hitting 39 states — far more widespread than previously known

Russia’s cyberattack on the U.S. electoral system before Donald Trump’s election was far more widespread than has been publicly revealed, including incursions into voter databases and software systems in almost twice as many states as previously reported. (National Post)

 

OTHER STORIES (Domestic and International)

Sask. town rallies around family set to be deported to Honduras

A small Saskatchewan town is rallying around a family that is set to be deported soon after Canada Day. "The people are always anxious," says Russell Slugoski, one of the Moosomin residents who has been helping the family. (CBC)

New clinic opens in Montreal for migrants with no health insurance

The city of Montreal has a new one-of-a-kind clinic where medical treatment will be provided to people with no health care coverage. Médecins du Monde Canada, a non-governmental organization that helps provide medical treatment to the needy, inaugurated the clinic at 560 Crémazie Street East Tuesday evening. (CBC)

Rise in Montreal hate crimes just 'tip of the iceberg,' activist says

The latest figures showing an increase in reported hate crimes in Montreal, particularly those targeting Muslims, are just the "tip of the iceberg," according to one of the city's leading anti-racism activists. Haroun Bouazzi said the new report from Statistics Canada underscores the challenge ahead in Montreal and across the country in dealing with racist views. (CBC)

Hate crimes against Muslims in Canada up 60%, StatsCan reports

The number of police-reported hate crimes against Muslims jumped by 60 per cent in 2015 compared to the previous year, according to Statistics Canada. New data released Tuesday show there were 159 anti-Muslim incidents reported to police that year, up from 99 the year before. (CBC)

Immigration arrests of dozens of Iraqi Christians prompt protest in Detroit

The arrests of dozens of Iraqi Christians in southeastern Michigan by U.S. immigration officials appear to be among the first roundups of people from Iraq who have long faced deportation, underscoring rising concerns in other immigrant communities. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials on Monday declined to say how many were taken into custody, but advocates say at least 40 people were arrested near or at homes, mostly on Sunday. Roughly 100 people protested Sunday at a Detroit detention centre, many expressing their concern for the arrestees' safety. (CBC)

Who was behind the jihadist attacks on Europe and North America?

More than 400 people have died in jihadist attacks in the West during the past three years. What can we learn, asks Dr Lorenzo Vidino. Although the vast majority of Islamist attacks are elsewhere in the world, an unprecedented number in Europe and North America - more than 50 in total - have put the authorities under great pressure to prevent further deaths. (BBC)

Senior officer warns police cuts put public at risk from terrorism

One of the country’s top police commanders has suggested that cuts to police budgets are having a detrimental impact on the ability of forces to protect the public against terror attacks. Craig Mackey, Deputy Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, said that each branch of the police service needs to be funded properly if the country is to be protected from jihadi terrorists. (Telegraph)

Moment armed police swoop on man who 'told packed London train he knew people from ISIS and had a gun'

Commuters in London were left terrified yesterday after a man reportedly told a packed train he 'knew people from ISIS' and 'had a gun'. Onlookers claim the man boarded the London Overground train travelling for Richmond and started shouting at passengers when it stopped at Canonbury station. (Daily Mail)

Putin deploys missile defense system in Siberia that has 'no match among Western militaries' amid rising concerns of war breaking out in North Korea

Russian President Vladimir Putin is deploying his new state-of-the-art Buk-M3 missile defense system in eastern Siberia in response to concerns over war breaking out in North Korea. The move follows a warning by US defense secretary Jim Mattis this week that Kim Jong Un's regime is the world's 'most urgent and dangerous threat to peace and security'. (Daily Mail)

The Deadly Toll of Venezuela’s Grinding Protests

After more than 70 days of protests against President Nicolas Maduro, Venezuela’s bitter political standoff has burned down to a fiery core. Anti-government demonstrations once drew turnouts of over a million, but weeks of tear gas and water-cannon blasts have dissuaded casual protesters. Those who remain are more strident, more disruptive and more willing to confront security forces, who intensify their response in turn. The result is that the mounting pressure has created a sense of bedlam on Venezuela’s streets as opposition leaders vow protests will drag on. (Bloomberg)

Otto Warmbier 'was brutalised by pariah N Korea', parents say

The parents of Otto Warmbier, the US student who is in a coma after being freed this week by North Korea, say he was "brutalised" by a "pariah regime". The 22-year-old is now being treated in hospital after the flight carrying him landed in Ohio on Tuesday. Mr Warmbier was sentenced to 15 years of hard labour for attempting to steal a propaganda sign from a hotel. (BBC)

Taiwan: How China is stealing the island's diplomatic allies

Foreign diplomats stationed in Taiwan do not need to travel far to meet officials from the island's international aid office. One building in Taipei, the capital, houses most embassies, and the International Co-operation and Development Fund is located on the upper floors. Taiwan has long used development aid and assistance to keep its handful of diplomatic partners onside but its giant mainland neighbour is now an economic superpower. (BBC)

 

EDITORIAL AND OPINION PIECES 

Ezra Levant/Candice Malcolm: PROOF: In rush to keep Trudeau promises, “refugees” weren't screened

Our own Candice Malcolm broke the news, based on meeting notes from Immigration Canada officials, acquired through an Access To Information request. These documents confirm what our own ATIP investigation revealed a few months ago, into the mysterious “questionnaire” “refugees” were supposedly being screened with at intake facilities. (Rebel)

Tarek Fatah: Many Muslims need to do some soul-searching

If the study of human suffering at the hands of fellow human beings is your area of interest, Toronto this weekend was the place to be. Two different “ethnic” community groups that could not have been more distinct from each other in terms of culture, cuisine and language, met separately to share their pain and hear from speakers trying to heal the wounds that refuse to heal, despite nearly a century of torment. (Toronto Sun)

John Ivison: Don’t have a cow, man, but on debt the Liberals are going back to the ’90s

Let’s hope nobody in the Prime Minister’s Office heard the speech made Monday by Bank of Canada senior deputy governor Carolyn Wilkins. In front of an audience in Winnipeg, she suggested there has been an encouraging “broadening” of economic activity across all regions and sectors. Executives are responding optimistically to questions about future sales and investment, with 70 per cent of industries expanding at a rate not seen since the oil-price shock in 2015. (National Post)

John Carpay: Canadian universities are far too tolerant of obstructionist behaviour that shuts down free speech

It seems there is a new doctrine rapidly gaining acceptance at universities across Canada: Silencing people you disagree with is OK, as long your tactics of disruption and obstruction are not violent. In recent months, there have been a growing number of incidents of university presidents blithely condoning the silencing of speakers who have unpopular views (or at least views that are unpopular with a vocal minority). (National Post)

Neil Macdonald: Sooner or later, the bill will arrive for Trudeau's spending

Setting aside the strange, faith-based alchemy of money-printing, government finances are pretty simple: if the government spends more than it takes in, it either has to borrow the difference or raise taxes. Eventually, enough spending and borrowing will force it to raise taxes. And that is where Justin Trudeau's government is heading. His ministers, most of whom seem to have attended advanced courses on how to say nothing cheerfully, are doing it cheerfully, and saying nothing. (CBC)

 

REPORTS, COMMITTEE HEARINGS, LEGISLATIVE UPDATES

-       Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration meet later today to study M-39, Immigration to Atlantic Canada and to meet with Immigration Consultants (3:30PM EST) (Partly in Public)

-       Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs met yesterday study Canada’s Development Finance Initiative and the Human Rights Situation in South Sudan (Public)

-       Standing Committee on Public Safety meet later today for committee business and to study Bill C-23, an Act respecting the preclearance of persons and goods in Canada and the USA (3:45PM EST) (Partly in Public)

-       Standing Committee on National Defence met yesterday for committee business (Partly in Public)