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Canada's vaccine flood and North Vancouver tragedy: In The News for Mar. 29 – The Battlefords News-Optimist

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In The News is a roundup of stories from The Canadian Press designed to kickstart your day. Here is what’s on the radar of our editors for the morning of Mar. 29 …

What we are watching in Canada …

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OTTAWA – Canada is scheduled to receive a flood of new COVID-19 vaccine doses this week.

The Public Health Agency of Canada says pharmaceutical companies are expected to deliver around 3.3 million shots over the coming days.

That would mark the single-largest week of vaccine doses into Canada since the start of the pandemic.

Pfizer and BioNTech are scheduled to ship nearly 1.2 million doses this week, as the two companies continue pumping out shots at a rapid pace.

Another 1.5 million doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine are set to arrive by truck from the United States on Tuesday.

And the government is expects Moderna to make good on its promised delivery of 600,000 shots this coming Thursday, which is about a week later than expected.

Moderna was supposed to have shipped around 846,000 shots to Canada last week, but only a fraction actually arrived due to what the company and government have described as a backlog in its quality-assurance testing.

Also this …

REGINA – There is some new research on what Canadians think life will be like when the pandemic is over.

A study suggests most people believe COVID-19 will have negative consequences on mental health, travel and the economy.

Others feel the pandemic will bolster online shopping and make public mask-wearing more common.

The findings are from a phone survey by the Canadian Hub for Applied and Social Research at the University of Saskatchewan.

Director Jason Disano says people are starting to see a light at the end of the tunnel because of vaccines.

He says some of the data he found most interesting were about children’s education.

Despite 63 per cent of people feeling like the pandemic will have a positive effect on the delivery of online education, 54 per cent thought it would be bad for children’s learning.

Overall, the survey suggests there is a lot of uncertainty about what communities will look like once they are no longer threatened by the novel coronavirus.

And this …

VANCOUVER – Police are expected to release more details today in their investigation of a stabbing rampage that left a young woman dead and injured six others in and around a library on Saturday in North Vancouver, B.C.

A 28-year-old man was charged Sunday with second-degree murder.

The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team said Yannick Bandaogo is in police custody after undergoing surgery for self-inflicted wounds.

Police have not named the woman who died, but said she was in her 20s. Six others were injured in the attack at the Lynn Valley Public Library.

Police said their injuries vary in severity and all six are expected to survive.

In a written statement, Sgt. Frank Jang said police planned to hold a news conference today. IHIT investigators spent Sunday combing the area for evidence and interviewing witnesses, he said.

Supt. Ghalib Bhayani of the North Vancouver RCMP said the department shares “the community’s grief and outrage.”

The pile of flowers and wreaths left just outside the caution tape cordoning off the crime scene grew throughout the weekend as residents stopped by.

What we are watching in the U.S. …

MINNEAPOLIS — A former Minneapolis police officer goes on trial Monday in George Floyd’s death, and jurors may not wait long to see parts of the bystander video that caught Derek Chauvin’s knee on Floyd’s neck.

Prosecutors have not said when they will play the video, but legal experts say they expect it to be early as part of an effort to remind jurors of what is at the heart of their case.

The widely seen video sparked waves of outrage and activism across the U.S. and beyond.

And while it will have an impact, the key questions at trial are likely to be whether Chauvin caused Floyd’s death and whether his actions were reasonable.

And this …

WASHINGTON — U.S. President Joe Biden will lay out the first part of his multitrillion-dollar economic recovery package this week focusing on rebuilding roads, bridges and other infrastructure.

A separate plan in April will address child and health care.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki confirmed on Sunday the administration’s plans to split the package into two legislative proposals, though she says the White House will “work with the Senate and House to see how it should move forward.”

Biden will release details in a speech Wednesday in Pittsburgh about his proposal for federal investments in physical infrastructure.

What we are watching in the rest of the world …

SUEZ, Egypt — Engineers have partially refloated the container ship that is wedged across the Suez Canal.

But the massive ship is still blocking traffic and there are no details about when it might be fully freed.

The canal services firm says the ship was partially refloated after tugboats pushed and pulled while the full moon’s tides raised the water level.

Dredgers are also removing mud and sand around the ship. Satellite images show the vessel’s bulbous bow still wedged in the canal’s eastern bank.

The skyscraper-sized Ever Given became stuck in the canal last Tuesday and has held up $9 billion in global trade each day.

And this …

BEIJING — A joint WHO-China study on the origins of COVID-19 says that transmission from bats to humans through another animal is the most likely scenario and that a lab leak of the coronavirus is “extremely unlikely.”

A draft copy was obtained Monday by The Associated Press.

The findings were largely as expected, and left many questions unanswered.

The team proposed further research in every area except the lab leak hypothesis.

The report’s release has been repeatedly delayed, raising questions about whether the Chinese side was trying to skew the conclusions.

The AP received what appeared to be a near-final version from a Geneva-based diplomat from a WHO-member country.

ICYMI …

HALIFAX – Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan paid tribute Sunday to Canada’s only all-Black unit to serve during the First World War, saying the 600 members of No. 2 Construction Battalion and their descendants are owed an apology for the racism they faced despite their willingness to serve.

Sajjan told a virtual event plans are in the works for a formal apology from Ottawa, which will highlight the fact that hundreds of Black men in Canada were turned away when they volunteered to fight overseas in 1914.

“They stepped forward and volunteered for our country, only to be denied because of the colour of their skin — denied to fight in a so-called ‘white-man’s war,'” Sajjan said in a brief speech from British Columbia.

After two years of protests, the Canadian military was granted approval in 1916 to establish a segregated, non-combat battalion that would be tasked with building roads, railways and forestry operations as part of the Canadian Expeditionary Force.

Established July 5, 1916, in Pictou, N.S., the battalion was the last segregated unit in the Canadian military.

Only a few of its members would see combat, mainly because the battalion was repeatedly told its help wasn’t wanted on the front lines.

Members of the unit were shipped home in 1918 and the battalion was disbanded in 1920.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Mar. 29, 2021

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Canadas Immigration Problems Solved by Invisible Border Walls

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Canadas’s immigration story is seen by the world as too liberal that gives them a good image through out but there seems to be some lesser-known information. It is not only liberal but conservative as well and they hide this fact all too well. This is only made possible by the invisible border walls that Canada has instore.

No this is not something out of sci-fi novel. This is actually true and will be discussed further down the article. But first we need to see what happen in the 1980s.

Since the 1980s, Canada has consistently been a high-immigration country, at least relative to the U.S. As a result, the proportion of Canadians born outside the country hit 21.9 percent in 2016. That same year, America’s foreign-born population was 13.4 percent. That’s a record high for the U.S.—but it’s been 115 years since Canada’s foreign-born population was at such a low level. As Derek Thompson put it in his article analyzing how Canada has escaped the “liberal doom loop,” Canada’s floor is America’s ceiling.

So, the question remain why has Canada managed to sustain popular acceptance and cross-party support for so much legal immigration?

Well firstly, this is because the intake of the Canadian population has been so law abiding and orderly so to be undisruptive and thus not being newsworthy. Canada unlike the neighbor USA is a country where mostly come in from the front door, in the open and during the daylight hours.

Everyone coming to Canada would have to apply from there home countries to come to Canada before they are granted access to the country, they have to go through a huge line of people already waiting after which they are subjected to extensive vetting by the Canadian authorities. Those who make the cut are then let in the country. In short it is not only you that chooses Canada but Canada would also have to choose you. For this to work.

For those who choose to trespass and try to enter Canada by illegal means well that where the invisible border walls come in. that right Canada has a border wall. In a sense of course. In fact, there are 5 of them. Four geographic and 1 bureaucratic. All of which have been effective at sustaining the legitimacy and popularity of Canada’s immigration policy.

Three of the walls are the dumb luck of geography: the Atlantic, Pacific, and Arctic oceans. You can cross the Aegean from Asia to Europe in a dinghy, but unless you can get your hands on a ship and a crew trained in navigating thousands of miles of difficult water, you aren’t sailing to Canada. So far in 2018, Canada has received exactly 10 asylum applications at sea ports.

The fourth wall is Canada’s southern border with the U.S. The world’s leading economy has historically been a magnet for people, not the reverse. In the late 19th and early 20th century, the volume of emigrants from Canada to the U.S. was at times so high that Canadians actually feared for the future of their country. The strength of the American economy long meant that few immigrants would think to use the U.S. as a back door into Canada.

The fifth wall is the bureaucratic barrier that Canadian governments, both Conservative and Liberal, have meticulously maintained to cover any gaps in the other defenses.

This is the underlying reason for Canada having an amazing immigration system, that would present itself as liberal but is actually more a concern of some natural luck.

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How to Immigration System in Canada has Changed Since the Covid-19

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Before we jump into the current situation we need to look into what Canada and its immigration system has been for people all around the world. Canada has been a keeper of refugees; for people that are involved in international controversies, religious persecution etc from there country of origin.

We see this in the 1947-1953 Canada welcomed thousands of Hungarians and Vietnamese “boat people”. In the late 1970s and Syrians in the 2010s.

This still continues to date since the immigration and retention of people from Hong Kong.

But all of this would begin to change since the beginning of the covid 19. The real question is Canada has suffered far worst and still managed to land on its feet. Will this time be different? Only time will tell.

The History of Immigration in Canada:

Canada has a history of coping with situation that limited its ability to accept newcomers to its country. The First World War saw immigration to Canada drop precipitously; in 1915, the intake was only 34,000 people (compared to over 400,000 just two years before).

In the 1920s we began to see an increase in numbers but again dropped sharply with the advent of the Great Depression, dipping still further with World War II. So, the drop in immigration to Canada resulting from the Coronavirus is far from unheralded in Canada’s history.

Canada has also seen great waves of immigration, particularly as part of a response to, and recovery from, challenges. Hundreds of thousands of immigrants poured into the country, many to the west, in the decade or so following the establishment of Saskatchewan and Alberta as provinces. Unlike many countries in Europe, which arguably had too many people and not enough land, Canada had the opposite problem.

After the calamity of the Second World War, Canada, unlike many other nations, had emerged strong and stable. But it was sorely lacking in the labor force and skills necessary for the great post-War economy and recovery taking place. Between 1946 and 1953, over 750,000 souls found a home in Canada.

Plans on Immigration After the Pandemic:

The government has announced a goal of settling over 1,200,000 new permanent residents in Canada from now until 2021-2023. In considerable measure, economic and population needs are the motivation for this ambitious plan. Marco Mendocino, the incumbent Immigration Minister, expressed it well in announcing the targets in the following statement:

“Immigration is essential … to our short-term economic recovery and our long-term economic growth … newcomers create jobs not just by giving our businesses the skills they need to thrive, but also by starting businesses themselves.”

Conclusion:

The pandemic has hit the world hard and well Canada has been no stranger to the virus, we have people lost lives and people that have suffered a lot financially and economically. This would have to turn around in the near future but until that happens Canada would have play there cards right for this to work out in the favor of the country and it’s citizens.

I personally think that Canada can still make a difference in the international world. If it were to continue to follow the plan it has set for itself. I am sure that this is going to be difficult but considering previous Canadian track record this is going to be something that Canada would be coming out of with potentially amazing results.

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Japan’s Suga visits for Biden’s first White House summit; China tops agenda

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By Trevor Hunnicutt and David Brunnstrom

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga on Friday became the first foreign leader to be hosted at the White House since President Joe Biden took office, underscoring Tokyo’s central role in U.S. efforts to counter China’s growing assertiveness.

The one-day summit offers the Democratic president a chance to work further on his pledge to revitalize U.S. alliances that frayed under his Republican predecessor, former President Donald Trump.

The meeting is expected to yield steps diversifying supply chains seen as over-reliant on China and a $2 billion commitment from Japan to work with the United States on alternatives to the 5G network of Chinese firm Huawei, a senior U.S. official said.

Biden and Suga also plan to discuss human rights issues related to China, including the situation in Hong Kong and Xinjiang, the official said.

The summit, Biden’s first face-to-face meeting with a foreign leader, is expected to produce a formal statement on Taiwan, a Chinese-claimed, self-ruled island under increasing military pressure from Beijing, said the official, who did not want to be identified.

White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said Biden, in his talks with Suga, would address China’s “increasingly coercive action” on Taiwan, which is China’s most sensitive territorial issue.

It would be the first joint statement on Taiwan by U.S. and Japanese leaders since 1969. However, it appears likely to fall short of what Washington has been hoping from Suga, who inherited a China policy that sought to balance security concerns with economic ties when he took over as premier last September.

In a statement after a March meeting of U.S.-Japan officials, the two sides “underscored the importance of peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait” and shared “serious concerns” about human rights in Hong Kong and Xinjiang.

The U.S. official said that both countries, while not wanting to raise tensions or provoke China, were trying to send a clear signal that Beijing’s dispatch of warplanes into Taiwan’s air defense zone was incompatible with maintaining peace and stability.

A Japanese foreign ministry official said this week it had not been decided whether there would be a joint statement and two Japanese ruling party lawmakers familiar with the discussions said officials have been divided over whether Suga should endorse a strong statement on Taiwan.

The U.S. official said Washington would not “insist on Japan somehow signing on to every dimension of our approach” and added: “We also recognize the deep economic and commercial ties between Japan and China and Prime Minister Suga wants to walk a careful course, and we respect that.”

China’s foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said Friday that China has expressed solemn concern about what he called “collusion” between Japan and the United States, and the countries should take China’s concerns seriously.

SUGA MEETS HARRIS

Suga met first with Vice President Kamala Harris and was then due to sit down with Biden in the Oval Office before holding a joint news conference. Earlier, Suga participated in a wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery.

“Japan highly praises and appreciates that the Biden-Harris administration puts high importance on cooperating with its allies and partners,” Suga told reporters as he began talks with Harris.

“There is no other time than today when the Japan-U.S. alliance needs to be strong,” he added, citing “a wide range of challenges.”

Harris said they would discuss “our mutual commitment in the Indo-Pacific.”

With his in-person summit with Suga, and another planned with South Korea in May, Biden – who took office on Jan. 20 – is working to focus on the Indo-Pacific region to deal with China’s rising power, which he sees as the critical foreign policy issue of the era.

He hopes to energize joint efforts with Australia, India and Japan, in a grouping known as the Quad, as well as with South Korea, to counter both China and longtime U.S. foe North Korea, and its increasingly threatening nuclear weapons program.

It requires a delicate balancing act given Japan and South Korea’s economic ties with China and currently frosty relations between Seoul and Tokyo.

Also expected to figure into the White House discussions are the summer Olympics due to be held in Tokyo. Psaki said the administration understands the careful considerations Japan is weighing as it decides whether to go ahead with the games. Japan is grappling with rising coronavirus infections with fewer than 100 days from the planned start.

The emphasis on Japan’s key status could boost Suga ahead of an election this year, but some politicians are pushing him for a tougher stance towards Beijing as it increases maritime activities in the East and South China Seas and near Taiwan.

The United States, the European Union, Britain and Canada have all imposed sanctions on Chinese officials for alleged abuses in Xinjiang and some Japanese lawmakers think Tokyo should adopt its own law allowing it to do the same, even as Japanese executives worry about a Chinese backlash.

(Reporting by David Brunnstrom and Trevor Hunnicutt, additional reporting by Nandita Bose and Steve Holland; writing by David Brunnstrom and Matt Spetalnick;Editing by Kieran Murray, Lincoln Feast and Chizu Nomiyama)

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