Trudeau confirms Canadian military personnel were at airbase hit by Iranian missiles – CBC.ca
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau confirmed today that Canadian troops were in harm’s way when Iranian ballistic missiles slammed into a military base in northern Iraq early Wednesday, but he declined to condone — or criticize — the U.S. actions which precipitated the strike.
Speaking to reporters in Ottawa after a separate deadly air crash in Tehran claimed the lives of 63 Canadians, the prime minister said Canada condemns the Iranian attack on the base.
“I am relieved, as are all Canadians, that all personnel deployed in Iraq are safe,” Trudeau said.
He expressed admiration for the professionalism of the soldiers under fire but also repeatedly emphasized the importance of staying the course in the ongoing effort to eradicate the remnants of the Islamic State.
That message, according to government insiders, was the main focus of Canada’s diplomatic efforts Wednesday, conducted through a flurry of telephone calls to world leaders.
Drone strike was Washington’s call: Trudeau
Keeping the anti-Islamic State coalition together and focused has taken precedence over pressing the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump for evidence justifying the American drone strike that killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad.
“It was a threat assessment the U.S. made,” said Trudeau. “It was a threat assessment the U.S. was tasked with making and made.”
The Trump administration has insisted since Friday’s drone strike that Soleimani represented an imminent threat to American lives — but the language it’s used to support that claim has changed over the last few days, with more emphasis being placed on the general’s role in creating mayhem and bloodshed in the region with the secretive Quod Force branch of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards.
In some respects, Trudeau’s remarks mirror the careful language being used by other world leaders — including NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, who on Monday deflected questions about whether the allies were troubled by the extraordinary decision to kill Soleimani.
NATO ambassadors were given a briefing by the U.S. State Department and military members on Monday, and apparently were given a sense of the intelligence the Americans were acting on when they ordered the drone strike. Trudeau did not say today whether Canada was convinced by that briefing, or whether he brought up the subject in a telephone call with President Trump on Wednesday.
‘It opens the Pandora’s Box’
Roland Paris, a former foreign policy adviser to Trudeau and a University of Ottawa professor, said Democrats in the U.S. have been doing a good job of demanding an explanation for the killing. He also emphasized the extraordinary nature of the United States targeting a foreign official for death, in legal and foreign policy terms.
“It opens the Pandora’s Box and it might be one of the longer term consequences,” said Paris, noting that it’s largely unprecedented for a western country to kill an adversary’s general outside of a state of war.
The focus of U.S. allies, including Canada, appears to be “stabilizing this situation, which is explosive,” he said.
Trudeau said Canada is prepared to continue the “extremely important” anti-ISIS NATO training mission in Iraq.
“NATO has a significant role in the training mission that we’re moving forward with — but there are always going to be more reflections on what are the next steps to take, given the current circumstances,” the prime minister said.
Keeping the anti-ISIS mission alive
Canada has about 500 troops in Iraq, some of whom were moved out earlier this week as a precaution. Military assistance operations and most activities outside of heavily fortified compounds have been suspended until the security situation improves.
Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan said today he could not state when, or if, the assistance might resume.
Paris said it’s vital that both the NATO training mission and the more direct U.S.-led military coalition hunting ISIS holdouts resume their work.
“We have a clear interest in sustaining those missions and building up the capacity of the Iraqi government to hold the country together and to be countering any revival of ISIS,” said Paris.
Less than two years after the American troops left Iraq following the 2003 invasion, the Iraqi army collapsed in the face of the threat from ISIS.
“It was not only horrifying in terms of ISIS’s actions, but it threatened our security,” said Paris. “Canada [and] the rest of our allies have a very clear interest in preventing a resurgence of the Islamic State.”
Former top Canadian commander Tom Lawson, who first ordered special forces into Iraq, said that given the current tension between Iran and the U.S. — and even within the Iraqi government in Baghdad — restarting both missions could be tough.
“It’s difficult to see a scenario that has [Canadian troops] return happily to supporting the Kurds in the north, and just as tough to figure out what kind of scenario could return the NATO mission out of Baghdad,” the retired general told CBC’s Power and Politics Wednesday night.
The Ultimate Solution to Selling Your Used Car in Ontario
An urgent need for money can happen suddenly to almost anyone. That’s normal, and that is what can be overcome by selling some of your property. The car suits the situation the most, as it is valuable enough to cover the most needs. Yet, if you have quite an old vehicle which doesn’t operate tip-top? You still can convert it into cash! That’s where companies like topcashforcars.ca, specializing in buying cars for cash, come into play, particularly in the province of Ontario.
Three Ideas Where to Sell a Vehicle in the Ontario Area
As usual, there are three main ways to find a buyer who will pay cash for used cars.
- Individuals, who want to get a car for a low price. Often, former teens decide to buy their first cars from second-hand owners. That is a good idea when your vehicle is reliable enough, and it can drive properly or at least it could be repaired.
- Marketplaces which were developed for used cars. Typically, even junk cars can be sold there as a source of spare parts or for some other goals. If you have an old automobile, for example, you can sell it for some decorative purposes. Yet, it is not a guarantee that you sell the car for cash quickly. Regularly, it takes months to find a buyer on these marketplaces.
- Apply for the services of scrap car removal companies. That is the way out for owners of cars which are totally damaged and are not suitable for further use.
The last option is what you can use in any case. And there are companies of that kind which offer fast payments for old cars.
Decide on What You Want to Get: Cash or Money Transfer
Which way you choose depends fully on your wish. But you should also take in mind that not all removal businesses offer cash for cars in Ontario. So, if the need for money is urgent, it is better to detail this option in advance. Because in other cases, you may face multiple troubles on the way like long waits for bank transaction approvals or additional fees for money withdrawals.
How to Get Top Cash for Used Cars in Ontario
So, if getting cash is your #1 goal, we advise you to look for a scrap car removal which offers to pay you in cash. In Ontario, Topcashforcars.ca offers that.
Besides the form of payment, the price also may matter to you. And that’s also OK in Topcashforcars.ca. You can get top dollar for old cars in it, even if the vehicle is not operating well. The price can vary, but it is usually clear and transparent in this company. Moreover, you can get a calculation for your vehicle even without moving a finger. It is available for online application on the company’s site. So, it can take just a couple of moments to receive a quote and decide if the deal is profitable for you. As usual, it is.
And it is one more great piece of news. The company offers to buy cars instantly. You apply for its services and sell your vehicle on the same day, getting cash in your pocket. That is what no one else offers in the market today. So, the secret is unveiled, and we hope that your selling experience will be great, bringing you the money you need.
Uganda’s president signs into law anti-gay legislation with death penalty in some cases
KAMPALA, Uganda (AP) — Uganda’s president has signed into law anti-gay legislation supported by many in this East African country but widely condemned by rights activists and others abroad.
The version of the bill signed by President Yoweri Museveni doesn’t criminalize those who identify as LGBTQ+, a key concern for some rights campaigners who condemned an earlier draft of the legislation as an egregious attack on human rights.
But the new law still prescribes the death penalty for “aggravated homosexuality,” which is defined as cases of sexual relations involving people infected with HIV, as well as with minors and other categories of vulnerable people.
A suspect convicted of “attempted aggravated homosexuality” can be imprisoned for up to 14 years, according to the legislation.
Parliamentary Speaker Anita Among said in a statement that the president had “answered the cries of our people” in signing the bill.
“With a lot of humility, I thank my colleagues the Members of Parliament for withstanding all the pressure from bullies and doomsday conspiracy theorists in the interest of our country,” the statement said.
Museveni had returned the bill to the national assembly in April, asking for changes that would differentiate between identifying as LGBTQ+ and actually engaging in homosexual acts. That angered some lawmakers, including some who feared the president would proceed to veto the bill amid international pressure. Lawmakers passed an amended version of the bill earlier in May.
LGBTQ+ rights campaigners say the new legislation is unnecessary in a country where homosexuality has long been illegal under a colonial-era law criminalizing sexual activity “against the order of nature.” The punishment for that offense is life imprisonment.
The United States had warned of economic consequences over legislation described by Amnesty International as “draconian and overly broad.” In a statement from the White House later Monday, U.S. President Joe Biden called the new law “a tragic violation of universal human rights — one that is not worthy of the Ugandan people, and one that jeopardizes the prospects of critical economic growth for the entire country.”
“I join with people around the world — including many in Uganda — in calling for its immediate repeal. No one should have to live in constant fear for their life or being subjected to violence and discrimination. It is wrong,” Biden said.
The United Nations Human Rights Office said it was “appalled that the draconian and discriminatory anti-gay bill is now law,” describing the legislation as ”a recipe for systematic violations of the rights” of LGBTQ+ people and others.
In a joint statement the leaders of the U.N. AIDS program, the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief and the Global Fund said they were “deeply concerned about the harmful impact” of the legislation on public health and the HIV response.
“Uganda’s progress on its HIV response is now in grave jeopardy,” the statement said. “The Anti-Homosexuality Act 2023 will obstruct health education and the outreach that can help end AIDS as a public health threat.”
That statement noted that “stigma and discrimination associated with the passage of the Act has already led to reduced access to prevention as well as treatment services” for LGBTQ+ people.
Rights activists have the option of appealing the legislation before the courts. Later Monday, one group of activists and academics petitioned the constitutional court seeking an injunction against enforcement of the law.
An anti-gay bill enacted in 2014 was later nullified by a panel of judges who cited a lack of quorum in the plenary session that had passed that particular bill. Any legal challenge this time is likely to be heard on the merits, rather than on technical questions.
Anti-gay sentiment in Uganda has grown in recent weeks amid news coverage alleging sodomy in boarding schools, including a prestigious school for boys where a parent accused a teacher of abusing her son.
The February decision of the Church of England ’s national assembly to continue banning church weddings for same-sex couples while allowing priests to bless same-sex marriages and civil partnerships outraged many in Uganda and elsewhere in Africa.
Homosexuality is criminalized in more than 30 of Africa’s 54 countries. Some Africans see it as behavior imported from abroad and not a sexual orientation.
Alberta voters await election results as polls close across province
Polls have closed across most ridings in Alberta.
As votes are counted and results trickle in, Albertans must now wait to see who will lead the province through the next four years.
Many have already made their voices heard during last week’s advance polls: 758,550 votes were cast, smashing the previous record of 700,476 in 2019.
If all goes to plan, by the end of tonight Albertans will have elected 87 MLAs to represent them in the province’s 31st legislative assembly. Although Calgary has been cited as the deciding battleground, there are plenty of ridings to watch with every election offering its own surprises.
CBC News will be hosting live coverage throughout the evening. You can watch it here from 7:30 p.m. MT. A comprehensive list on how you can follow the election is listed below.
Although there are many parties from either end of the political spectrum — from communists to separatists — the race is very much a rematch of 2019’s contest between the United Conservative Party and the New Democratic Party.
A lot has changed since the UCP took the province four years ago. The world weathered the COVID-19 pandemic, the governing party chose a new leader, and oil prices have returned prosperity to the provincial coffers.
Danielle Smith leads the UCP, having won the leadership race this fall after Jason Kenney’s resignation. This will be her second attempt at taking the premiership in an election, having led the Wildrose Party into 2012.
Rachel Notley meanwhile leads the NDP for her third election as leader. She won a four-year term as premier in 2015 before losing to Kenney in 2019.
Both offer their own vision of Alberta’s future.
The long campaign
The election officially started on May 1, although campaigning began much earlier.
On that first day, Smith and Notley held Calgary kick-off events singing the refrain to songs that would play on repeat in the coming weeks.
Smith promised to keep taxes low. The UCP has pledged to make its first legislation an amendment so income taxes can only be raised through referendum.
Notley promised she would fix the health-care system. The NDP have committed to offering signing bonuses up to $10,000 to attract doctors, nurses and other health professionals.
Cost of living, health care, public safety and other issues have been as much the basis of attacks as of promises.
The UCP hammered Notley’s plan to return the corporate tax rate to 11 per cent. The NDP lambasted Smith after she was found to have breached the conflict of interest act. And on it went.
Albertans were finally able to see the two leaders go head-to-head in the sole election debate on May 18, although the exchange hardly produced headline-making gaffes or declarations.
For many in the province, politics has been the least of their concerns. Wildfires erupted throughout central and northern Alberta in early May, threatening communities and forcing thousands to evacuate from their homes.
There were unsuccessful calls to postpone the election but Elections Alberta has said it will ensure every eligible Albertan gets to vote.
Here are more ways you can follow the election results.
Here is where to watch the CBC News election special starting at 7:30 p.m. MT:
The Alberta Votes 2023: Election Night special starts at 7:30 p.m. MT, led by CBC Edmonton host Nancy Carlson and CBC Calgary host Rob Brown.
They will be joined by Radio Active host Jessica Ng to break down results riding by riding.
Find your local channel.
CBC Radio’s special election coverage will start at 7:30 p.m. MT. Alberta at Noon host Judy Aldous and CBC Edmonton’s Tahirih Foroozan will deliver immediate results as Albertans select the province’s next government.
Judy will be joined by panellists Tina Faiz, Jeromy Farkas, Monte Solberg and Corey Hogan for instant analysis, CBC’s Scott Dippel for context on swing ridings, as well as guest voices from across the province.
The Ultimate Solution to Selling Your Used Car in Ontario
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