Ottawa to offer Omar Khadr apology, compensation package
The federal government will offer an official apology and a $10-million compensation package to former child soldier Omar Khadr for abuses he suffered at Guantanamo Bay, the U.S. military prison for suspected and captured terrorists. Sources tell The Globe and Mail that the announcement is expected later this week.
Mr. Khadr, now 30, spent 10 years at Guantanamo Bay after being involved in a firefight in Afghanistan that led to an American soldier’s death. Born in Toronto, he was taken to the Middle East by his father as a teenager and was imprisoned at the age of 15. The Supreme Court of Canada found that the U.S. interrogators violated “the most basic Canadian standards about the treatment of detained youth suspects.”
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BC NDP to keep taking donations while Greens call for immediate ban
The BC NDP says it will continue to collect union and corporate donations until it is able to change the law once it forms government. The BC Green Party, with which the NDP has aligned itself to topple former premier Christy Clark and the BC Liberal Party, is calling for an immediate ban. The two parties in the power-sharing agreement have vowed to end the “Wild West” era of political fundraising in the province.
As part of its decision to prop up a NDP-led government, the Green Party has decided to work together on issues where the two parties see eye-to-eye: campaign finance; electoral reform; and environmental policy. With the NDP deciding to “play by the rules until the rules change,” it remains to be seen whether the contention between the two parties manifests itself into a larger issue.
Payment complications turning Canadian doctors away from assisted dying
It’s been more than a year since Canada legalized medical assistance in dying with Bill C-14. Since the landmark piece of legislation passed, concerns have arisen over how medical professionals are compensated when administering assisted deaths, beginning with the consultation phase. The question of how doctors should be paid for assisted dying is incredibly complex, given the unique nature of the patient’s request and it is inextricably linked to larger discussions on how medical professionals are compensated and who gets access to care. Many physicians say they are being inadequately paid compared to doctors in other provinces while others are still waiting to be compensated. The issue is having an impact on doctors from coast to coast while in Ontario and Newfoundland and Labrador there are no specific billing codes for performing the medical service.
Trump-Merkel divide threatens to make G20 summit a ‘failure’
World leaders will be in Germany at the end of this week for the annual G20 summit. Many are expecting the gathering to be the most contentious of its kind ever. Others expect little, if anything, will be accomplished. German Chancellor Angela Merkel will need to live up to her reputation as a leader with a steady hand in crisis situations to ensure that the summit doesn’t end up in failure.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Ms. Merkel and several other heads of government have aligned themselves in opposition to U.S. President Donald Trump on the two big-ticket agenda items: climate change and free trade. “Canada’s three priorities [at the G20] are inclusive economic growth, women in the economy and managed migration,” Mr. Trudeau said.
Global shares, oil and bond yields all pulled back after bright starts to the second half of the year on Tuesday, as a long-range missile test by North Korea and July 4 holidays for U.S. markets restricted risk appetite. Tokyo’s Nikkei lost 0.1 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng 1.5 per cent, and the Shanghai composite 0.4 per cent. In Europe, London’s FTSE 100, Germany’s DAX and the Paris CAC 40 were down by between 0.1 and 0.2 per cent by about 6 a.m. (ET). The Canadian dollar was at just about the 77-cent (U.S.) mark. Crude futures posted their first session of losses in nine, ending their longest run of gains since February, 2012.
WHAT EVERYONE’S TALKING ABOUT
Is Seattle’s minimum-wage debacle coming to Ontario?
“Ontario’s Liberals have made the $15 minimum wage a centrepiece of their election campaign. It’s sure to be a vote-getter. In principle, there’s nothing wrong with this. You probably couldn’t live on $9.47 an hour, and most other people can’t either. The objection to raising the minimum wage is that it kills jobs. The debate over the “right” minimum has raged back and forth forever. Now the latest results are in for Seattle, and they are devastating. A new study from the University of Washington found that raising the minimum wage from $11 to just $13 (the $15 rate doesn’t kick in till later) had huge effects. Employment fell so much that the income paid to low-wage employees sank by roughly $120-million on a yearly basis. That worked out to a loss for each worker of $125 a month.” – Margaret Wente
Amid growing international disdain, Trump will find respite in Poland
“Given Mr. Trump’s unpopularity is particularly marked in Western Europe, it is no coincidence that he has decided to make a Polish stopoff where Washington recently deployed hundreds of troops. The country’s government, run by the conservative, Euroskeptic Law and Justice Party, has been much more welcoming of Mr. Trump than many other EU counterparts, and the country is one of only four NATO members other than the United States that spends the 2-per-cent target of GDP on defence. Examples of the Polish administration’s affinity with Mr. Trump include its opposition to immigration, support for burning coal, and skepticism of multilateral institutions. Right now, for instance, Polish Prime Minister Beata Szydlo finds herself in heated battles with the EU over her administration’s refusal to resettle refugees and migrants, and opposition to judicial changes that Brussels says will weaken the rule of law.” – Andrew Hammond
Canada’s new air safety changes are great for pilots. But what about passengers?
“The move comes after vigorous lobbying by Canada’s pilot unions. These organizations have, for years, lamented over the nation’s supposedly outdated pilot scheduling practices. Their message? These practices are unsafe and place passengers’ lives at risk. Their solution? Give pilots more down time to avoid fatigue on the job. The proposed rules do just that. Pilots will, under these rules, work less compared to years prior and get more time off. That’s great for pilots. But what about passengers? Are we really guaranteed a safer flying experience because of these rules?” – Ashley Nunes
Canadians across the country have been enjoying barbecue season but a new question has emerged over one of the staples of backyard grilling: the humble hot dog. Namely, many are asking whether hot dogs without “added nitrites” are healthier. One of Oscar Mayer’s newest weiners uses nitrites made from celery juice, instead of artificial sources. Nitrites are used as a preservative to maintain the pinkish colour of processed meat and prevent botulism. The food producer said it was making the change in response to consumer preferences but researchers are skeptical of the change’s potential health benefits.
MOMENT IN TIME
Eiffel Tower becomes an ad
July 4, 1925 — Enjoying a bottle of wine under the glimmering lights of the Eiffel Tower is one of Paris’ many summer pleasures. But the first decorative light display on the monument was an advertisement. In its early days, the Eiffel Tower was illuminated with gas street lamps, then spotlights to show off its arches. Then, in 1925, automobile magnate André Citroën took it further, using 250,000 coloured lights to spell out the Citroën brand name on three sides of the tower, in letters so big they could be seen 30 kilometres away. The sign required its own generating station at the base of the tower. Two years later, Charles Lindbergh would use it as a guide post when landing in Paris after the first solo transatlantic flight. The emblazoned Citroën name was a feature of the tower for nine years, with thousands more bulbs added as the sign became even more ornate. – Susan Krashinsky Robertson
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