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The Thursday news briefing An ataglance survey of some top stories

first_imgHighlights from the news file for Thursday, Aug. 3———ASYLUM SEEKERS FLOOD OVER BORDER INTO QUEBEC: Quebec Immigration Minister Kathleen Weil says there has been a surge in the number of people illegally crossing from the U.S. seeking asylum. Weil told a news conference Thursday that in the past couple of weeks roughly 150 people are coming over the border each day. She says Quebec has already received 6,500 asylum seekers as of the end of June.———DEGRASSE INJURY BLOW TO CANADIAN TRACK TEAM: Andre De Grasse’s withdrawal from the world championships with a hamstring injury is a huge blow for the Canadian team. De Grasse’s coach Stuart McMillan says it’s a disappointment that he won’t have a final chance to race Usain Bolt. All signs pointed to a solid world championships for De Grasse. He was undefeated in the 100 and 200 in his last four Diamond League meets.———LEAK OF TRUMP PHONE CALL TOUCHES ON CANADA: A leaked transcript of a phone call between Donald Trump and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto shows the American president had a positive attitude about Canada when he took office. The transcript was published Thursday by the Washington Post. The conversation turned to the North American Free Trade Agreement and Trump is quoted as saying that he wasn’t worrying about Canada and that his administration has a fair relationship with Canada. Trump has since complained about Canadian dairy and lumber policies.———TORONTO TAKES MEASURES TO DEAL WITH OVERDOSE DEATHS: Toronto is moving to more quickly open three supervised injection sites in the wake of a rash of drug overdoses in the city last week that included four deaths. Mayor John Tory is also asking police to consider having some officers carry the opioid overdose antidote naloxone. Tory said Thursday that every overdose death is a preventable death.———FEDS PROMISE TO DO EVERYTHING POSSIBLE TO PROTECT RIGHT WHALES: Federal Fisheries Minister Dominic LeBlanc says the government will do everything possible to protect right whales in the face of 10 deaths in the Gulf of St. Lawrence in the past two months. LeBlanc said Thursday that the government will bring in the necessary resources to protect the population. LeBlanc said he’s concerned the whale deaths could hurt the reputation of the Canadian fishing industry, so the department and fishermen are eager to protect the whales.———RESEARCHERS FIND WORM FOSSIL: Canadian and American researchers have discovered the fossil of a spiky-headed worm that they think would have terrified other creatures swimming in ancient seas. Jean-Bernard Caron of the Royal Ontario Museum says the creature would have been an efficient predator and a frightening sight to many of the smallest marine creatures that lived during that time. Some 50 specimens of the creature were found in the Burgess Shale fossil beds, a UNESCO World Heritage site in British Columbia.———WHAT’S IN THOSE SAUSAGES: A study funded by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency says that 20 per cent of sausages sampled from Canadian grocery stores contained meats that weren’t on the label. The study published this week in the journal Food Control was conducted by researchers at the University of Guelph. Researchers say about one in five of the sausages tested had some off-label ingredients in them, which they call alarming. The agency set the wheels in motion for the study after the European horse meat scandal in 2013, where food labelled as beef was found to have horse meat.———ENVIRONMENT MINISTER TARGETED IN LAWSUIT: Several environmental groups are taking legal action against Environment Minister Catherine McKenna, accusing the federal government of dragging its heels on investigating Volkswagen for duping Canadians with diesel engines. Volkswagen pleaded guilty in the U.S. in March after software was found in certain diesel vehicles that made it appear as though the cars were producing fewer emissions than they really were. A statement from McKenna says her department is investigating but Environmental Defence and the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment say they’re tired of waiting.———ENERGY EXEC PREDICTS KEYSTONE PIPELINE WILL BE BUILT: The head of Canadian Natural Resources says he is sure the Keystone XL pipeline will be built despite doubts in the face of lower oil prices and regulatory obstacles. Steve Laut said Thursday his company is committed to use almost a fifth of the capacity on the 830,000-barrel-per-day conduit from Alberta to markets in Oklahoma and the U.S. Gulf Coast. U.S. President Donald Trump approved the controversial project in March, but questions have been raised about its economic viability.———TORONTO HOME SALES COOL LAST MONTH: New figures show home sales in the Greater Toronto Area fell last month by 40.4 per cent compared to July 2016 after a bout of frantic buying at the start of the year. The Toronto Real Estate Board attributes the decline in property transactions to fewer sales of detached homes in Toronto and its surrounding areas. In April the provincial government introduced more than a dozen measures — including a 15 per cent tax on foreign buyers — aimed at improving home affordability.last_img

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