True North Initiative News Scan 11 15 2017

TOP STORIES

Canada Welcomes Migrants From U.S. As Trump Enforces Immigration Law

Canadian officials told the Washington Post that they expect more U.S.-based migrants to seek homes in Canada because U.S. officials are promising to enforce the temporary residency rules within the huge “Temporary Protected Status” program. Under that program, the United State has hosted almost 400,000 people from Haiti, Honduras, El Salvador and various other countries. The migrants’ 18-month stays have repeatedly been extended since 1999 by officials working for President George W. Bush and Barack Obama, but are now being wrapped up by Trump’s deputies. (Breitbart)

Canada fears a huge rush of asylum seekers if their U.S. protected status is lifted

In late October, starkly worded warning signs began appearing on the Canadian border with New York state and Vermont aimed at discouraging would-be asylum seekers fleeing the United States. “Stop. It is illegal to cross the border here or any place other than a Port of Entry. You will be arrested and detained if you cross here.” “Not everyone is eligible to make an asylum claim,” reads a second sign. “Claiming asylum is not a free ticket into Canada.” (Washington Post)

Edmonton car and stabbing attack suspect to undergo psychiatric reviews

A man facing several counts of attempted murder after a police officer was hit with a car and stabbed by an assailant is to face two psychiatric assessments. The reviews are to determine Abdulahi Hasan Sharif’s mental state at the time of the attack and as he faces trial, his lawyer said Monday as his client appeared in an Edmonton court via video link. “The information is extremely preliminary at this moment,” said Karanpal Aujla. “However, from the information I’ve been told and review of the initial disclosure, it appears to me that there certainly may be issues that pertain to mental health.” (Toronto Star) (CBC)

Montreal terror trial facing a significant delay, jury told

The jury hearing the trial of Sabrine Djermane and El Mahdi Jamali returned to the Montreal courthouse for the first time in a week on Tuesday, only to find out the case is now faced with a considerable delay. “I’m sure it is a shock for you,” Superior Court Justice Marc David told the jury after informing the panel he has to deal with two motions, outside of the presence of the jury, before determining how and when the trial will resume. “It is inconceivable that your work will be done before Dec. 22.” (Montreal Gazette)

Iran Blasts Canada for Double-Standard Policies on Human Rights

Iran’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN Es’haq Al-e Habib was reacting to a Canada-drafted human rights resolution, which was adopted Tuesday against Iran by the Third Committee of UN General Assembly with 83 votes in favor, 30 against and 68 abstentions. Speaking during the session, Al-e Habib rejected the document as “politically-motivated” and said “double standards are an integral part of Canada’s foreign policy.” (IFP News)

U.S. Congress urged to crack down on Chinese investment as Canada opens door

A U.S. congressional watchdog is calling for stricter oversight of investments or takeovers by Chinese companies and a ban on Beijing's state-owned or state-controlled entities from buying U.S. assets – a dramatically different approach to China than the one Ottawa is taking. The annual report to Congress by the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission arrives shortly before Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is expected to begin free-trade talks with China that could ultimately see Canada relax controls over Chinese investment in this country. (Globe and Mail)

 

OTHER STORIES (Domestic and International)

Canada to deliver host of initiatives to UN peacekeeping conference including $15M trust fund

Canada will announce a series of initiatives on Wednesday aimed at delivering a "more coherent" approach by the United Nations for the involvement of women in peacekeeping operations and the resolution of conflicts in troubled nations, CBC News has learned. The package will be unveiled at an international meeting of defence ministers in Vancouver and is meant to address shortcoming in the UN's long-stated desire to see female soldiers, police officers and community leaders at the forefront. (CBC)

Trudeau to commit Canadian troops to global peacekeeping missions

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will announce Wednesday that Canada will commit soldiers and equipment to assist a number of peacekeeping operations around the world rather than devoting all of the country's pledged resources to one mission. These commitments will be different from traditional deployments and may be more of a supporting or specialized role that can be used wherever needed. (Globe and Mail)

National security oversight committee seeking $4.5M to get off the ground

The new government department-style entity being created to support a group of Parliamentarians charged with overseeing the country’s national security and intelligence operations is expected to cost about $4.5-million this fiscal year, with the Privy Council Office taking on half of the start-up costs. The Privy Council Office is requesting an additional $2.2-million in funding through the second set of supplementary estimates for the 2017-18 fiscal year for its role in establishing the National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians (NSICOP) Secretariat. (Hill Times)

Trudeau's Liberals check their to-do list: 67 promises down, more than 200 still to go

Justin Trudeau's Liberals, elevated to power on promises to do all sorts of things and awash in enthusiasm for data and evidence, are proposing now to account for what they've been doing with their time in office: to quantify both their own ability to keep a promise and track whether keeping those promises is contributing to measurable improvements in the welfare of the country. (CBC)

Canada’s coal phase-out alliance unfazed by opposing U.S. position, federal environment minister says

Environment Minister Catherine McKenna says Canada is going full-steam ahead with its push for a global alliance to eliminate coal-fired electricity, and that she isn’t concerned the United States — with its pro-coal president — is trumpeting an opposite approach. McKenna, who is in Bonn, Germany for the 23rd annual United Nations climate change conference this week, told reporters by phone on Tuesday that Canada will work with countries and sub-national players like businesses and American states that “understand that we need to power past coal.” (Toronto Star)

MPs, senators on track to spend $4.5M on foreign travel, hosting guests this year

MPs and senators are on track to spend $4.5 million to meet with their parliamentary counterparts around the globe this fiscal year — $1 million more than was spent last year. According to information on the calendar of events for parliamentary associations, the groups of MPs and senators tasked with promoting Canada's interests abroad, the $4.5 million will cover at least 134 meetings. It means hosting a number of visiting legislators from around the world in Canada and funding at least 69 trips abroad by delegations of Canadian MPs and senators. (CBC)

P.E.I. wants to boost its population. Here's how it plans on doing that

The government of Prince Edward Island is committing to new initiatives in an effort to get immigrants to stay in Canada’s smallest province and boost the population.The commitment is included in today’s speech from the throne, opening the fall session of the Island legislature. In the speech, read by Lt.-Gov. Antoinette Perry, the Liberal government says in the coming year it will take steps to encourage more immigrants to stay, and for more young Islanders to pursue opportunities on P.E.I (National Post) (Globe and Mail)

UN chief raises alarm over Rohingya crisis in speech as Burma’s Suu Kyi sits close by

The United Nations chief expressed alarm over the plight of Rohingya Muslims in remarks before Burma’s Aung San Suu Kyi and other leaders from a Southeast Asian bloc that has refused to criticize her government over the crisis. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said late Monday that the unfolding humanitarian crisis can cause regional instability and radicalization. He met with leaders from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations on the sidelines of its summit in Manila. (Toronto Star)

Tillerson calls for Myanmar Rohingya crisis probe

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has called for an independent investigation into Myanmar's Rohingya crisis. Myanmar's army has been accused of killing Rohingya people and burning their villages, forcing hundreds of thousands to flee to Bangladesh. (BBC)

Global Terrorism Index: Death toll drops globally but rise in Europe

The study by the Institute for Economics and Peace shows terrorism fell significantly in the worst-affected countries — Syria, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria — bringing down global casualty figures. The rise in European deaths coincides with a tactical shift towards simpler and cheaper methods of attack. (DW)

California gunman targeted neighbors before continuing rampage that left four victims and shooter dead

A Northern California man killed two neighbors with whom he had been feuding before he went on a shooting rampage Tuesday at apparent random sites — including an elementary school that successfully locked him out — in a series of attacks where he killed two more people and injured 10 before police fatally shot him, officials said. (National Post)

Zimbabwe crisis: Army takes over, says Mugabe is safe

The military has taken control in Zimbabwe but said President Robert Mugabe, in power since 1980, was safe. After seizing state TV, an army spokesman announced it was targeting people close to Mr Mugabe. South Africa's President Jacob Zuma later said he had spoken to Mr Mugabe who had indicated that he "was confined to his home but said that he was fine". (BBC)

 

EDITORIAL AND OPINION PIECES

Anthony Furey: Don't trust the Liberals to run their own promise tracker

The government’s launch of its own online promise tracker on Tuesday tells us that either the Liberals are incredibly naive or they think that of us. It’s hard to know which is worse. This initiative whereby the very people making (and sometimes breaking) these promises claim to accurately rate their progress deserves the same sort of arched eyebrow response we give to an employee self-evaluation or how a parent insists that their child is objectively the cutest. (Toronto Sun)

Tarek Fatah: 'Anti-Islamophobia' motion taking more fire

A professor of linguistics at the University of Ottawa, commenting on the so-called anti-Islamophobia motion, M103, has urged the Trudeau government “to start an international Commission on how to handle the violence in the Koran,” which, he says exists, without doubt. Professor Karim Achab gave his presentation on Nov. 8 to the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage regarding the motion on systematic racism and religious discrimination, which focuses on “Islamophobia.” (Toronto Sun)

Susan Harper: Please don’t come — Canada cannot welcome America’s frightened TPS recipients

The government of Canada has no special programs to grant refugee status to people living in the United States under Temporary Protected Status. Temporary Protected Status in the United States does not entitle anyone to the same status in Canada. Any claims to the contrary are false. (Miami Herald)

Wall Street Journal: Venezuela Goes Bust

Milton Friedman once joked that if you put the government in charge of the Sahara Desert in five years there would be a shortage of sand. He could have been talking about Venezuela and its oil wealth. But it is no joke. On Monday Caracas missed interest payments due on two government bonds and one bond issued by the state-owned oil monopoly known by its Spanish initials PdVSA. Venezuela owed creditors $280 million, which it couldn’t manage even after a 30-day grace period. (WSJ)

 

REPORTS, COMMITTEE HEARINGS, LEGISLATIVE UPDATES

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