Connect with us

Politics

Politics Briefing: Ripudaman Singh Malik, man acquitted in 1985 Air India bombing, shot dead in Surrey, B.C. – The Globe and Mail

Published

 on


Hello,

One of two men acquitted in the 1985 Air India terrorist bombing was shot and killed in British Columbia on Thursday morning, according to media reports.

RCMP say they responded to reports of gunfire in an area of the city of Surrey, southeast of Vancouver, and located a man suffering from gunshot wounds.

“The man was provided first aid by attending officers until Emergency Health Services took over his care. The injured man succumbed to his injuries on scene, “ according to a statement from RCMP Constable Sarbjit Sangha.

The constable said the shooting was targeted, and a suspect vehicle fully engulfed in fire was found nearby.

Reports say the deceased man is Ripudaman Singh Malik, who owned a business in the area.

Malik and Ajaib Singh Bagri were arrested in 2000 and acquitted in 2005 on charges of murder in the deaths of 329 people – most of them Canadians – killed on June 23, 1985, when Flight 182 en route from Canada to India via England crashed into the Atlantic Ocean.

The plane was brought down by a bomb.

The pair were also charged with the murder of two men killed at Tokyo’s Narita airport 54 minutes before the attack on Flight 182. The prosecution alleged the men were part of a conspiracy to plant bombs on Air India flights.

In handing down the acquittal, a B.C. Supreme Court justice ruled that witnesses testifying against the pair were not credible and testimony from several RCMP officers did not meet the standard required by the court.

Inderjit Singh Reyat was the only person ever convicted in the Air India bombing, in 1991, of manslaughter in the deaths of two baggage handlers who were killed at Tokyo’s Narita Airport when a suitcase bomb destined for the Air India flight blew up. He served 10 years for that crime. He also got five years for another manslaughter charge in the Air India bombing. Then, in 2010, he was convicted of perjury for lying to the court during the trial of Mr. Malik and Mr. Bagri.

He was sentenced to nine years for perjury, the longest such sentence ever given in Canada, although he was given credit for time served awaiting trial. His sentence began on Jan. 7, 2011 and he was released in 2016.

The Air India attack, considered the largest mass killing and worst act of terrorism in Canada, has been a tragedy that has enmeshed successive federal governments for decades.

In 2005, Liberal prime minister Paul Martin attended a memorial service in Ireland with families of the victims. Also in 2005, former Ontario premier Bob Rae, now Canada’s ambassador to the United Nations, was appointed to look into whether the federal government should call a public inquiry over the Air India investigation and prosecution. Mr. Rae eventually recommended a focused inquiry.

In 2006, the federal Conservative government of Stephen Harper appointed former Supreme Court Justice John Major to conduct a commission of inquiry, which, released in 2010, said errors by the government, RCMP and CSIS allowed the attack to occur.

Mr. Harper issued a public apology for “institutional failings” and the treatment of the victims’ families. “The protection of its citizens is the first obligation of government. The mere fact of the destruction of Air India Flight 182 is the primary evidence that something went very, very wrong,” Mr. Harper told a ceremony in Toronto in June, 2010.

This is the daily Politics Briefing newsletter, written by Ian Bailey. It is available exclusively to our digital subscribers. If you’re reading this on the web, subscribers can sign up for the Politics newsletter and more than 20 others on our newsletter signup page. Have any feedback? Let us know what you think.

TODAY’S HEADLINES

MANDATORY RANDOM TRAVELLERS TESTING TO RESUME – The federal government says mandatory random testing of travellers arriving at its four main airports will start again next week. Story here.

ARCHIBALD FALSELY STATED COOPERATION WITH INVESTIGATION: BRIEFING NOTE – Assembly of First Nations National Chief RoseAnne Archibald falsely stated that she was co-operating with an external investigation into complaints made against her by AFN employees during an interview last month, according to a briefing note written by AFN external counsel. Story here.

‘SWIFT JUSTICE” NEEDED, VICTIMS TELL POPE – Quebec victims of sexual abuse by Catholic clergy members are calling on Pope Francis to deliver “swift justice” to them ahead of his visit to Canada at the end of the month. Story here. Meanwhile, the federal government announced on Wednesday more than $30-million in new funding to support Indigenous communities and organizations during the upcoming papal visit. Story here from CBC.

INVESTIGATIONS INTO SEX ASSAULT REOPENED BY HOCKEY CANADA – Hockey Canada is reopening investigations into 2018 sexual-assault allegations involving members of the country’s 2018 world junior team. Story here.

FIRST VACCINE APPROVED FOR INFANTS AND PRESCHOOLERS – Canada’s drug regulator approved Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine for infants and preschoolers, making it the first vaccine approved for that age group in the country. Story here.

INTEREST RATE INCREASE TO DEEPEN HOUSING CHILL – The Bank of Canada’s interest rate increase is expected to deepen the chill in the country’s housing market and reinforce the view that property values will decline. Story here. There’s a Globe and Mail Explainer here on how the Bank of Canada’s interest-rate hike affects variable rate mortgages.

OTTAWA RESIDENTS RECOUNT CONVOY PROTEST EXPERIENCES – The second day of the city’s public hearings into the convoy protest was dominated by people describing how they were harmed by the blockade of downtown streets last winter and frustrated by the failure of authorities to end it. “I was in the Soviet Union when it collapsed in December, 1991. Walking on Wellington Street during the convoy occupation gave me flashbacks to that experience,” said Andrea Chandler, who has lived and worked in Ottawa for 30 years. Story here from the Ottawa Citizen.

EX CONSERVATIVE STAFFER CHARGED WITH MISCHIEF TO DATA – The RCMP says former Conservative staffer Dion Ahwai has been charged with mischief to data, which sources say is related to an investigation of an alleged theft of materials from Erin O’Toole’s Zoom account during the 2020 leadership race. Story here.

KING AWAITS BAIL OUTCOME – “Freedom Convoy” organizer Pat King is waiting to hear whether he will be released on bail, with a bail review set to continue for a second day Thursday. Story here.

CONSERVATIVE LEADERSHIP RACE

CAMPAIGN TRAIL – Scott Aitchison is in Regina. Roman Baber holds a meet and greet in Moose Jaw, Sask. Jean Charest is in Saguenay, Que. Leslyn Lewis is in Haines Junction in the Yukon. Pierre Poilievre is in Vancouver, Richmond and Surrey.

THIS AND THAT

The House of Commons is not sitting again until Sept. 19. The Senate is to resume sitting on Sept. 20.

ERIN O’TOOLE INTERVIEWS ERIN O’TOOLE – The former Conservative Party leader interviews Colorado radio host Erin O’Toole – her story is here – on the Canadian O’Toole’s podcast, Blue Skies with Erin O’Toole, MP. Oddly enough, they have the same birthday. You can access the episode here.

LIBERAL MPS EYE MAYORAL POSTS – At least two Liberal MPs are said to be looking for jobs as mayors. The Hill Times reports here that three-term MP Ruby Sahota is considering a run to become the next mayor of Brampton, Ont., a job now held by Patrick Brown, who has been disqualified as a contender for the leadership of the Conservative Party of Canada. Mr. Brown is looking at seeking another term. “He will make a decision soon and is leaning to returning to municipal public service,” says Chisholm Pothier, a spokesperson for Mr. Brown’s leadership bid. Meanwhile, there’s word from British Columbia that MP Sukh Dhaliwal is about to launch a bid to become mayor of Surrey, the province’s second-most populous city. Mr. Dhaliwal has scheduled a 6 p.m. announcement on Monday, July. 18.

GOVERNOR WEBINAR – Bank of Canada Governor Tiff Macklem is to participate in a webinar Thursday afternoon hosted by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business. The event is private, but a recording of the conversation will be published online at approximately 4:30 p.m. ET to the CFIB YouTube channel.

ALGHABRA IN REGINA – Transport Minister Omar Alghabra, is making an announcement about new funding to improve rail safety and efficiency in Regina and southern Saskatchewan.

BIBEAU IN CALGARY – Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau is in Calgary to announce support for on-farm research activities to develop and implement best practices to reduce greenhouse emissions in Canada’s agriculture and agri-food sector.

LEBLANC AND ATWIN IN FREDERICTON – Intergovernmental Affairs Minister Dominic LeBlanc and Fredericton MP Jenica Atwin, Member of Parliament for Fredericton, are making an infrastructure announcement in Fredericton with the city’s mayor, Kate Rogers, and New Brunswick Transportation Minister Jill Green.

ST-ONGE IN MONTREAL -Sports Minister Pascale St-Onge is in Montreal, announcing $30-million in financial support for 14 festivals and cultural events in Quebec.

THE DECIBEL

On Thursday’s edition of The Globe and Mail podcast, The Globe’s Mark Rendell, who covers the Bank of Canada, explains what the bank is up to with an increase on Wednesday of one percentage point to the benchmark interest rate. The surprise move is the biggest hike since 1998. The aggressive increase is larger than economists were expecting. The goal is to cool inflation, which hit 7.7 per cent in May – the highest it’s been in almost four decades. The Decibel is here.

PRIME MINISTER’S DAY

Private meetings.

LEADERS

No schedules available for party leaders.

OPINION

The Globe and Mail Editorial Board on the Bank of Canada baring its teeth:This is new terrain for many people. Rampant inflation existed in the hazy past, during the 1970s, oil embargoes and a stagnant economy. Relatively high interest rates in Canada lasted until the early 1990s. Everyone got used to low inflation and low rates in the decades that followed. Central bankers seemed in full control. Tectonic shifts like China’s rise in the world economy kept the prices of goods low. Technology got faster and cheaper. Oil prices were mostly modest. The pandemic upended everything.”

John Ibbitson (The Globe and Mail) on why the UN is still wrong on population: The United Nations, in its reluctant trudge toward reality, has removed 800 million people from the face of the earth. But that’s not enough. In World Population Prospects 2022, released this week, the United Nations Population Division (UNPD) projects that the global population will reach 10.4 billion by the end of this century. That’s 800 million fewer than the 2017 edition projected.”

Robyn Urback (The Globe and Mail) on how Canadians are delusional captives to a broken health system: Canada’s health care system is in crisis. In Nova Scotia, 100,000 people – the most ever – are on waiting lists for family doctors. In Ontario, patients are enduring an average wait time of 20.1 hours in emergency rooms – the longest ever recorded – before being admitted to hospital. In Newfoundland and Labrador, emergency rooms that are supposed to be open 24/7 in rural communities are closing because of staff shortages; the same thing is happening in British Columbia. In Manitoba, paramedics have been called in to help a hospital desperate for weekend staff. In Saskatchewan, overcrowding in hospitals has reached a crisis point. These are not problems that a bump in federal funding to the provinces will fix (the premiers are asking Ottawa for a $28-billion, no-strings-attached annual increase to the Canada Health Transfer).”

Vaughn Palmer (The Globe and Mail) on B.C. Premier John Horgan learning that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s friendship is all about political self interest:As all this sank in — the perfunctory phone call, the one-two punch by the federal ministers delivered on national television — John Horgan’s usually upbeat demeanour gave way to a mixture of anger and frustration. The federal government was refusing to meet. It was bargaining through the news media. It was treating the provinces like “serfs.” “The federal government is not a superior order of government,” said the B.C. premier. “It’s an equal order of government, and we’ll take no lessons from the federal government in fiscal probity.” See, Horgan thought he’d got somewhere with the prime minister. Hardly ever during his five years as premier has he criticized the Trudeau government. In return, he thought he’d developed a healthy relationship based on mutual benefit for the province and the country.”

Got a news tip that you’d like us to look into? E-mail us at tips@globeandmail.com. Need to share documents securely? Reach out via SecureDrop.

Adblock test (Why?)



Source link

Politics

Letter: History keeps some out of politics – Richmond News

Published

 on


Dear Editor,

With Richmond’s Chinese residents making up over 50 per cent of the population, it’s disappointing, yet not surprising, there are no Chinese-Canadian candidates running for mayor in this year’s municipal election.

It would be a difficult task for any Chinese-Canadian to become part of the political elite. This has less to do with discrimination and more about our rich history of subservience in Western society. We lack a tradition of high profile political or corporate leaders to motivate our youth.

The first influx of Chinese migrants were predominantly poor, illiterate peasants fleeing famine, civil strife and brutal regimes. To survive these turbulent times one learned to stay silent, work hard and keep a low profile. Such qualities would also serve them well in a foreign and hostile land where these lessons were passed on to successive generations to the present.

Unfortunately these compliant attributes rarely ignite our passions, inspiring us to stand up and speak out. Over the years a few “embers” have flickered but were quickly doused.

From childhood, we are psychologically browbeaten into studying industriously and succeeding quietly while western culture heap praise on the loud and proud. Our over-emphasis on academics and status is a catch-22: Asian students graduate from top universities with some of the highest grades but many lack the interpersonal skills crucial for leadership roles.

Except for a few exceptional exceptions, we are content to be in the background, loyal employees toiling diligently to make their mainly “white male” bosses look good. Recall our rich history of subservience, many of us are more comfortable taking orders than giving them. 

In big business and politics, a magnetic personality is just as important as intelligence in leading a major organization or becoming mayor in a large city.

Perhaps a lack of charisma is one reason we find it so difficult to shatter that political glass ceiling, but we sure can polish it. 

Wes Fung

Richmond

Adblock test (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Politics

Bill Graham, a political rarity, was a beacon of civility in federal government – The Globe and Mail

Published

 on


Former Minister of National Defence Bill Graham waits for the Prime Minister to call the federal cabinet meeting to order in Winnipeg on August 26, 2005.CHUCK STOODY/CP

Bill Graham was old school. The former Liberal cabinet minister loved politics, loved the Toronto riding he represented through five elections, loved being out and about in the world, loved gossip and good stories, which he could tell better than just about anyone.

“He was a gentleman,” said Adrienne Clarkson, the former governor-general and close friend, “in a time when many people no longer understand the meaning of the word.”

He was also Canada’s foreign affairs and then defence minister in the critical early years of the century, contributing heavily to keeping Canada out of the war in Iraq and in the war in Afghanistan.

As interim leader of the Liberal Party in 2006, he held a fractious caucus together – at least most of the time – as a defeated party sought to regroup.

He was, above all, a beacon of civility in the bearpit of federal politics, which made him respected on both sides of the aisle.

“I don’t think I’ve ever heard somebody speak ill of Bill,” said Scott Brison, who sat in opposition to him as a Progressive Conservative MP, and then with him as a Liberal in former prime minister Paul Martin’s cabinet. “And to be honest, I almost never heard Bill speak ill of anybody else.”

A son of privilege, he championed the rights of minorities. He owned a place in Corsica, but some of the strongest support in his inner-Toronto riding came from the poorest neighbourhoods.

He lived life large but with grace, and never too seriously, no matter how serious things became.

Or as Bob Rae, Canada’s permanent representative at the United Nations, put it, “he was just a wonderful guy.”

Mr. Graham died from cancer, Sunday, at the age of 83. He leaves his wife Catherine, daughter Katy and son Patrick.

He moved in all the right circles from birth, though family life could be tempestuous. (On the day of his stepfather’s funeral, he wrote in his memoir, his mother tearfully confessed that he had actually been his biological father.) He attended Upper Canada College and the University of Toronto’s Trinity College, U of T’s law school and the University of Paris.

It seemed perfectly natural, while he was at Trinity, to buy a Land Rover with a friend and attempt to drive it from Europe to India. (They made it as far as Afghanistan.) He also joined the naval reserves, becoming a sub-lieutenant. As defence minister, “whenever I boarded a ship, they would say, ‘the minister is one of ours, you know,’ ” he recalled years later.

He married Catherine Curry on June 9, 1962, and settled into a life of law at the Toronto firm of Fasken, quickly establishing a reputation in international trade law. In 1980, he joined the University of Toronto’s law faculty. He was highly popular with his students, but with two careers already under his belt, he decided in midlife that it was time to tackle politics.

He ran twice in the downtown Toronto riding of Rosedale (later Toronto Centre-Rosedale, then Toronto Centre), failing both times, but learning about its different communities, from the swells north of Bloor Street – his people – to the public housing projects to the gay village.

In the 1988 campaign, a young man came up to him and said: “I want to help you get elected, though I’m dying of AIDS, and don’t have a long time to live.” Mr. Graham became a passionate supporter of the LGBTQ community, defender of the same-sex marriage act of 2005 and supporter of the Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives, known today as The ArQuives.

The support was financial, but he also showed up and pitched in as an organizer and volunteer. The queer experience in the generations before the LGBTQ rights movement “had not been documented by the community,” said Raegan Swanson, the archives’ executive director, “and here was a chance to make sure that history was preserved, essentially for the first time.”

In 1993, Mr. Graham took Rosedale as part of Jean Chrétien’s Liberal sweep of Ontario. Mr. Chrétien put him on the foreign-affairs committee, which he eventually chaired.

“He came in with a belief in the House of Commons,” said the writer and philosopher John Ralston Saul. (Catherine Graham introduced Mr. Saul to Ms. Clarkson in 1976; they were married in 1999.) A more ambitious politician might have seen committee work as, at best, a stepping stone to cabinet. “But he really loved the House,” said Mr. Saul. Mr. Graham often lamented the decline in the quality of debate in the Commons.

The committee produced major reports on the Arctic, nuclear disarmament and other issues. The historian and former MP John English said that Lloyd Axworthy, who was foreign minister at the time, told him, “Bill made that committee into something it never was before.”

In 2002, in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks, Mr. Chrétien made Mr. Graham minister of foreign affairs. This surprised many observers, since Mr. Graham had been friends since university days with Paul Martin, who was challenging Mr. Chrétien for the Liberal leadership.

But he was a loyal and effective minister, supporting Mr. Chrétien in his decision not to involve Canada in the American-led war in Iraq. Mr. Graham did not believe the evidence supported American arguments that the Saddam Hussein regime possessed weapons of mass destruction.

But Mr. Graham was also a political realist. As he wrote in his memoir, both he and Mr. Chrétien well knew that “most of the country, most of the cabinet, most of the Liberal caucus, most of the Commons, and a vast majority in the politically key provinces of Quebec and British Columbia were against sending Canadian troops into Iraq.”

Mr. Graham was a political rarity in that he served in the cabinets of both Mr. Chrétien and Mr. Martin. Though he wrote that he was disappointed when, in 2004, Mr. Martin shuffled him into defence, he served the department well.

Mr. Graham successfully pitched to have General Rick Hillier made chief of the defence staff, supported the military’s push for a greater combat role in Afghanistan, and persuaded Mr. Martin and Finance Minister Ralph Goodale to increase defence spending.

For Mr. Graham, the Afghanistan mission differed from Iraq in that it had greater international legitimacy. But in hindsight, he had regrets.

“We knew much less about Afghanistan and the politics of the region than we should have,” he wrote. “… It was unrealistic of us to expect that we could construct a truly effective government and civil society in the midst of the ongoing carnage.”

When Mr. Martin stepped down after Stephen Harper’s Conservative victory in January, 2006, caucus voted to make Mr. Graham interim leader. He successfully persuaded Liberal MPs to support a Conservative resolution recognizing the Québécois as a nation within a united Canada – opposing the resolution would mean the death of the Liberal Party in Quebec, he argued. But he could not bring the caucus with him when the Harper government sought parliamentary support to extend the mission in Afghanistan.

“You don’t understand anything about politics, Bill,” one MP told him. Maybe not, Mr. Graham replied, but “I do understand one thing: if we vote against this motion, Canadians are going to look at us and wonder what kind of chumps would flip-flop on such an important issue, involving the lives of our troops, just because we don’t happen to be sitting in the same seats as we were a few months ago.”

Nonetheless, a majority of caucus opposed the motion, which barely scraped through with the help of Mr. Graham and a rump of Liberal MPs, revealing the depths of divisions within the party in the wake of its defeat.

His friend and cabinet colleague Carolyn Bennett said Mr. Graham’s approach during policy debates was to talk quietly and to genuinely listen to people’s concerns.

“He used his knowledge and his leadership to be persuasive in a way that was kind and gentle,” she said. “I think Bill taught us all how you can be persuasive on progressive matters. … He made politics slightly less of a swear word.”

When Mr. Rae, who had been Ontario’s NDP premier, was looking for a riding to run in as a Liberal, Mr. Graham offered him his. He had decided it was time to step down and let a new crew take charge. Mr. Rae would himself one day serve as interim leader.

After his retirement from politics, Mr. Graham returned to Trinity College, this time as chancellor. He served on various boards, councils and commissions. He endowed the Bill Graham Centre for Contemporary International History (Mr. English was its first director), which promotes the study of contemporary events from a historical perspective.

When the Liberals returned to power under Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, he served as an adviser for the defence review that was published as Strong, Secure, Engaged. His memoir, which appeared in 2016, received praise for its candour, especially in his writings on Iraq and Afghanistan.

But it was his personal qualities that set Bill Graham apart as a politician. He was respected and admired by all sides, in part because he never let politics become personal.

Chris Tindal tweeted about the time in 2006, when he was running as the Green candidate in Toronto Centre. “One morning, I was canvassing at a subway stop when he pulled up. ‘You were here first,’ he said. ‘We’ll go somewhere else.’ But he stayed and chatted with me for a while. Whenever people recognized him, he redirected. “This is Chris, the Green Party candidate! Good guy!”

The Twittersphere was full of such stories this week, as friends and political opponents praised Mr. Graham’s courtesy, friendliness, lack of pretension, grace.

“Even while a determined opponent, Bill was always a gentleman, and he always kept the best interests of the country in mind,” tweeted Mr. Harper.

“He represented a certain tradition in Canadian political life,” said Mr. English. “It is the passing of a generation, and he was an exceptional representative of that generation.”

Scott Brison just misses his friend. “He was one of the kindest, smartest, wisest, funniest and best people I’ve known. And he embodied public service at its best.”

Adblock test (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Politics

Taiwan blames politics for cancellation of global Pride event – CNN

Published

 on


(Reuters)Taiwan on Friday blamed “political considerations” for the cancellation of WorldPride 2025 Taiwan after it said the organizers had insisted the word “Taiwan” be removed.

Taiwan participates in global organizations like the Olympics as “Chinese Taipei,” to avoid political problems with China, which views the self-governing democratic island as its own territory and bristles at anything that suggests it is a separate country.
Taiwan’s southern city of Kaohsiung had been due to host WorldPride 2025 Taiwan, after winning the right from global LGBTQ rights group InterPride.
Last year after an outcry in Taiwan, it dropped a reference to the island as a “region.”
But the Kaohsiung organizers said InterPride had recently “suddenly” asked them to change the name of the event to “Kaohsiung,” removing the word “Taiwan.”
“After careful evaluation, it is believed that if the event continues, it may harm the interests of Taiwan and the Taiwan gay community. Therefore, it is decided to terminate the project before signing the contract,” said the Kaohsiung organizers.
InterPride said in a statement they were “surprised to learn” the news and while they were disappointed, respected the decision.
“We were confident a compromise could have been reached with respect to the long-standing WorldPride tradition of using the host city name. We suggested using the name ‘WorldPride Kaohsiung, Taiwan’,” it added.
Taiwan’s Foreign Ministry said the event would have been the first WorldPride event to be held in East Asia.
“Taiwan deeply regrets that InterPride, due to political considerations, has unilaterally rejected the mutually agreed upon consensus and broken a relationship of cooperation and trust, leading to this outcome,” it said.
“Not only does the decision disrespect Taiwan’s rights and diligent efforts, it also harms Asia’s vast LGBTIQ+ community and runs counter to the progressive principles espoused by InterPride.”
Taiwan legalized same-sex marriage in 2019, in a first for Asia, and is proud of its reputation as a bastion of LGBTQ rights and liberalism.
While same-sex relations are not illegal in China, same-sex marriage is, and the government has been cracking down depictions of LGBTQ people in the media and of the community’s use of social media.

Adblock test (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Trending