Trudeau news: Liberals win in Canada election, but…

Canada election: Trudeau's Liberals win but lose majority

Trudeau news: Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party has retained power in a narrow Canadian election win but he will now be prime minister of a minority government.

The Liberals are projected to win 157 seats, 13 short of a majority, and will find it harder to pass legislation in Mr Trudeau’s second term.

The opposition Conservatives are expected to win the popular vote but have not translated that into seats.

They are projected to take 121, up from the 95 they held before.
Although Monday night’s results saw a sharp decline in seats for the country’s left-leaning New Democratic Party (NDP), its leader, Jagmeet Singh, could become the kingmaker.

The NDP is projected to take 24 seats in the 338-seat parliament.

Quebec’s separatist party, the Bloc Québécois, which competes only in that province, fared much better. It is expected to take 32 seats, compared to the 10 it won in 2015.

Turnout is currently listed at 66%.

The federal election was seen as a referendum on Mr Trudeau, who had a bumpy first term, tainted by scandal.

Mr Trudeau told cheering supporters in Montreal that voters had “rejected division and negativity… and they rejected cuts and austerity and voted in favour of a progressive agenda and strong action on climate change”.

He said: “Thank you for having faith in us to move our country in the right direction.”

And to those who did not back him, he promised his party would govern for everyone. Full Story

 

The Kenyan ghost writers doing ‘lazy’ Western students’ work

University students in Europe and the US are paying Kenyans to do their academic work for them.

The global market for academic writing is estimated to be worth $1bn (£770m) annually.

For some, ghost-writing university essays for students who don’t have the time or desire to do them can be lucrative, especially in countries with high unemployment among young graduates. Full Story

 

The race to build a flying electric taxi

For any commuter the prospect of being whisked to and from work in a fraction of the time it usually takes is pretty irresistible.

No traffic jams, no train delays and no cold platforms – what’s not to love?

This is the promise of more than a hundred companies developing electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft. Full Story

 

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Originally posted 2019-10-22 14:19:15.

Boris Johnson: says he’ll pull Brexit bill if lawmakers force delay

Boris Johnson: says he’ll pull Brexit bill if lawmakers force delay

Boris Johnson: LONDON (AP) — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was headed for a showdown Tuesday with lawmakers who want to put the brakes on his drive to push his European Union divorce bill through the House of Commons in just three days and take Britain out of the European Union by Oct. 31.

Johnson said that if Parliament imposes a longer timetable and “decides to delay everything until January or possibly longer,” he will withdraw the bill and call a vote on holding a snap general election.

“I will in no way allow months more of this,” said Johnson, who took power in July vowing that the U.K. will leave the EU on Oct. 31, come what may. His only hope of doing that is to pass the Brexit-implementing bill through Britain’s fractious Parliament before then.

Johnson’s announcement piles pressure on lawmakers as they consider whether to approve the government’s legislation, which would finally take Britain out of the EU — more than three years after voters opted to leave the bloc.

The bill faces two votes Tuesday, with lawmakers first being asked to approve it in principle, followed by a vote on the government’s schedule for debate and possible amendments.

Johnson said backing the bill would allow lawmakers to “turn the page and allow this Parliament and this country to begin to heal and unite.” Full Story

 

Iraq: American troops leaving Syria cannot stay in Iraq

BAGHDAD (AP) — U.S. troops leaving Syria and heading to neighboring Iraq do not have permission to stay in the country, Iraq’s military said Tuesday as American forces continued to pull out of northern Syria after Turkey’s invasion of the border region. Full Story

 

Russia, Turkey leaders hold talks on fate of Syria border

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — The presidents of Turkey and Russia met in the Black Sea resort town of Sochi on Tuesday, hours before a five-day cease-fire between Turkish troops and Kurdish fighters in northeastern Syria was set to expire. Full Story

 

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Originally posted 2019-10-22 14:19:05.

Ric Ocasek, frontman of The Cars, dead at 75

Ric Ocasek, frontman of The Cars, dead at 75

NEW YORK (AP) — Ric Ocasek, The Cars frontman whose deadpan vocal delivery and lanky, sunglassed look defined a rock era with chart-topping hits like “Just What I Needed,” was discovered dead Sunday afternoon in his Manhattan apartment.

The New York Police Department said that officers found the 75-year-old Ocasek at about 4 p.m. after responding to a 911 call. They said there were no signs of foul play and that the medical examiner was to determine a cause of death.

The death comes a year after The Cars were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, followed by an announcement by model Paulina Porizkova on social media that she and Ocasek had separated after 28 years of marriage. The pair first met while filming the music video for “Drive,” another Cars hit.

Ocasek, who sang, played guitar and wrote most of the band’s songs, and Benjamin Orr, who played bass and also sang, were ex-hippie buddies who formed The Cars in Boston in 1976. They were a decade older than many of their modern-rock compatriots but became one of the most essential American bands of the late 1970s and 1980s with their fusion of new wave, 1960s pop and 1970s glam.

Ocasek’s minimalist, half-spoken deadpan vocals set made the band’s sound, and his long, lanky appearance formed their lasting image.

The first three songs on their 1978 self-titled first album were all hit singles and remain widely known classics and oldies radio airplay: “Good Times Roll,” ″My Best Friend’s Girl” and “Just What I Needed.” Full Story

 

Trump says US locked and loaded in response to drone attack

WASHINGTON (AP) — Tensions are flaring in the Persian Gulf after President Donald Trump said the U.S. is “locked and loaded” to respond to a weekend drone assault on Saudi Arabia’s energy infrastructure that his aides blamed on Iran.

The attack, which halved the kingdom’s oil production and sent crude prices spiking , led Trump to authorize the release of U.S. strategic reserves should they be necessary to stabilize markets. Full Story

 

As shock wears off, mental health concerns grow in Bahamas

HIGH ROCK, Bahamas (AP) — One woman and her husband huddled on top of a bedroom dresser for two days, surrounded by floodwaters.

Another man sat in his wheelchair for nearly 48 hours in water up to his chest, alone in his home.

A third rescued a friend who sat in shock when part of a building where they sought shelter blew away.

Stories of survival are trickling out across northern Bahamas as the initial shock wears off from Hurricane Dorian, one of the strongest Atlantic hurricanes in history. Full Story

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Originally posted 2019-09-16 19:12:25.

Big hit for oil prices – US blames Iran for Saudi strike

Big hit for oil prices - US blames Iran for Saudi strike

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. tried to build its case Monday that Iran was behind the fiery weekend attack on key Saudi Arabian oil facilities that raised new war worries and sent energy prices spiraling worldwide. Iran denied responsibility, while President Donald Trump said the United States was “locked and loaded” to respond if necessary.

American officials released satellite images of the damage at the heart of the kingdom’s crucial Abqaiq oil processing plant and a key oil field, and two U.S. officials said the attacker used multiple cruise missiles and drone aircraft.

The Americans alleged the pattern of destruction suggested Saturday’s attack did not come from neighboring Yemen, as claimed by Iranian-backed Houthi rebels there. A Saudi military spokesman later made a similar accusation, alleging “Iranian weapons” had been used in the assault.

Iran rejected the allegations, and a government spokesman said there now was “absolutely no chance” of a hoped-for meeting between Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Trump at the U.N. General Assembly next week.
For his part, Trump sent mixed signals, saying his “locked and loaded” government waited for Saudi confirmation of Iran being behind the attack while later tweeting that the U.S. didn’t need Mideast oil “but will help our Allies!”

One U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations, said the U.S. was considering dispatching additional military resources to the Gulf but that no decisions had been made. Full Story

 

Warren offers anti-corruption plan central to her campaign

NEW YORK (AP) — Elizabeth Warren has released a proposal aimed at government corruption, providing a detailed policy roadmap for a fight she says is at the core of her presidential campaign.

The Democratic senator from Massachusetts is announcing the plan Monday in Manhattan’s Washington Square Park, near the site of the Triangle Shirtwaist Co., which caught fire in 1911, killing 140-plus workers. Many of those deaths later were attributed to neglected safety features, such as doors that were locked inside the factory. Full Story

 

Auto strike idles more than 50 GM factories and warehouses

DETROIT (AP) — More than 49,000 members of the United Auto Workers went on strike Monday against General Motors, bringing more than 50 factories and parts warehouses to a standstill in the union’s first walkout against the No. 1 U.S. automaker in over a decade.

Workers left factories and formed picket lines shortly after midnight in the dispute over a new four-year contract. The union’s top negotiator said in a letter to the company that the strike could have been averted had the company made its latest offer sooner. Full Story

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Originally posted 2019-09-16 19:02:47.

Boeing 737

Boeing 737 800

Boeing (BA) CEO Dennis Muilenburg has once again reiterated his expectations about the 737 MAX resuming services in the fourth quarter. Muilenburg made the comments during an investor conference in California on September 11, according to CNBC.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KVQz3RKrUfwHowever, he warned that the timetable of the jet’s return could be different in every country, given the disparity among regulators, reports CNBC. Muilenburg said, “I think the phased ungrounding of the airplane amongst regulators around the world is a possibility.”

Boeing is awaiting safety approval for the 737 MAX, which has been under a global flying ban since mid-March after a software problem caused two deadly accidents within five months. Once Boeing updates the software, world regulators will scrutinize it before approving the model to fly again.

The quick return of the MAX is critical for Southwest Airlines (LUV), American Airlines (AAL), and United Airlines (UAL). Together, the three airlines own 72 Boeing 737 MAX planes. They have suffered over 35,000 flight cancellations since the MAX’s grounding, costing them millions of dollars in foregone revenue and operating profit.

Why could the 737 MAX’s return be in phases?
Muilenburg’s concerns look realistic given the changing circumstances. On September 3, The Wall Street Journal reported that Boeing “failed to provide technical details and answer specific questions about modifications in the operation of MAX flight-control computers.” It added that regulators from the US, Europe, Brazil, and many other countries cut short Boeing’s August briefing. Full Story

Indonesia blames Malaysian companies for some forest fires

JAKARTA (Reuters) – Indonesia on Friday blamed four Malaysian companies, including the world’s biggest producer of sustainable palm oil, for causing some of the forest fires within its borders, in an escalating row between neighbours over regional haze.

Malaysia has said Indonesian forest fires are responsible for the smoky haze that has caused air quality to drop to unhealthy levels in certain parts of the country. Indonesia has dismissed those claims, saying fires within Malaysia are causing the pollution. Full Story

 

2020 Dem Debates: Round Three

Round three of the Democratic debates is scheduled for 8 p.m. EDT Thursday at Texas Southern University in Houston. It’s the first debate to be contained to one night, and is expected to take three hours. 10 candidates will be on stage; former Vice President Joe Biden (DE), Senator Elizabeth Warren (MA), Sen. Bernie Sanders (VT), Sen. Kamala Harris (CA), South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg (IN), former Congressman Beto O’Rourke (TX), businessman Andrew Yang (NY), Sen. Cory Booker (NJ), former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro (TX), and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (MN). Full Story

 

Asian markets move higher on hopes for a cooling trade war

Hong Kong (CNN Business)Asian stocks rallied Friday on continued hopes for a break in the US-China trade war.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng (HSI) was up 0.3% at market open, gaining ground after posting losses Thursday. Japan’s Nikkei (N225) jumped nearly 1%.
Markets in mainland China and South Korea were closed for holidays. Full Story

Originally posted 2019-09-13 13:48:10.

Syria Turkey: offensive: Syrian army heads north after Kurdish deal

Syria Turkey

Syria Turkey: Syrian government forces have started to reach the north of the country, hours after the government agreed to help Kurdish forces facing Turkey.

Syrian state media say government forces entered Ain Issa on Monday, 30km (19 miles) south of the Turkish border.

The deal came after the US, the Kurds’ main ally, said it would withdraw its remaining troops from northern Syria.

Turkey began an offensive in the region last week, aiming to push Kurdish forces from the border region.

Areas under the control of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) came under heavy bombardment over the weekend, with Turkey making gains in two key border towns.

Dozens of civilians and fighters have been killed on both sides.

The US announced on Sunday it was preparing to evacuate its 1,000 remaining soldiers from northern Syria.The Turkish offensive and US withdrawal have drawn an international outcry, as the SDF were the main allies of the West in the battle against the Islamic State (IS) group in Syria.

There have been fears about a possible resurgence of the group amid the instability. On Sunday Kurdish officials said nearly 800 relatives of foreign IS members had escaped from a camp in Ain Issa, where the Syrian army reportedly has now reached.

Turkey views elements of the Kurdish groups as terrorists and says it wants to drive them away from a “safe zone” reaching 32km into Syria. Full Story

 

The K-pop star Sulli has died aged 25

Police told the BBC the singer’s manager found her dead at her home near Seoul, South Korea.

They say they are investigating the cause of her death and are working on the ‎assumption that she may have taken her own life.‎

The star, who had more than five million followers on Instagram, was a former member of the band f(x) until she left in 2015 to focus on her acting career. Full Story

 

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Originally posted 2019-10-14 16:12:55.

France pension reform: huge jams

France pension reform

Macron pension reform: Paris paralysed by massive strike

The French capital is seeing huge jams and massive crowds on the few metro lines running as transport workers strike against planned France pension reform.

Ten of Paris’s 16 lines were shut and service on the others was disrupted.

Many workers cycled, walked or stayed at home, while free rides were on offer on transport operator RATP’s e-moped and Uber’s e-bike and scooter networks.

The strike, the biggest since 2007, is the first big act against President Macron’s plan for a universal pension.

It would replace dozens of different pension schemes for different professions.

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Members of other professions including lawyers, airline staff and medical workers have called for more strikes starting on Monday.

What is the situation in Paris?
There were 235km (145 miles) of traffic jams in the Paris region, officials said, more than double normal levels.

Local media showed photos of crammed platforms on four metro lines, where some trains were running.

Le Parisien newspaper said a legal requirement to maintain a minimum level of service – in place following a big strike in 2007, which was also against a pension overhaul – was not being fulfilled.

Three of the city’s five regional rail lines, run by national rail operator SNCF, were running as normal but the two other lines were offering a reduced rush hour service and no trains at all during the rest of the day. Full Story

Myanmar’s deadly ‘jade rush’

The world’s biggest jade mines are found in the restive Kachin state in Myanmar.

BBC Burmese gained rare access to area where mountains have been turned into moonscapes. Full Story

South Africa sexual violence protesters target stock exchange

People campaigning over the high levels of violence against women in South Africa have taken their protest to the financial heart of the country.

Hundreds have gathered outside the Johannesburg Stock Exchange to call on the country’s big firms to do more to tackle gender inequality. Full Story

 

Malaria vaccine in Kenya – a potential game-changer

The world’s first malaria vaccine is being rolled out in parts of Kenya from Friday, after previously being released in Ghana and Malawi.

It will be added to the routine vaccination schedule, and more than 300,000 children are expected to receive the vaccine over the next three years. Full Story

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Originally posted 2019-09-13 13:34:00.

Hotels in new Orleans near Bourbon street

Hard Rock Hotel under construction in New Orleans

Hotels in new Orleans near Bourbon street: A large portion of a Hard Rock Hotel under construction in New Orleans collapsed Saturday morning, killing at least two people and injuring 20 others, authorities said. The building bordering the city’s historic French Quarter is considered unstable and officials said further collapse is possible.

Three people were initially reported missing, though one has since been found, according to the New Orleans Fire Department. Authorities said no one on the ground was injured in the collapse.

According to Mayor LaToya Cantrell, 112 people were in the building at the time of collapse. Though the search for those missing was suspended for the evening, Cantrell confirmed that rescuers found two bodies but were unable to retrieve them.

Streets surrounding the site were closed and some buildings were evacuated, including the nearby 145-year-old New Orleans Athletic Club.

CBS affiliate WWL shared video of the collapse which showed construction workers running for their lives as the parts of the hotel came crashing down.

Governor John Bel Edwards was at the scene urging residents to stay away from the area. “I’m just asking for everybody to pray for those who are at the hospital,” Edwards told reporters.

Mayor Cantrell issued a statement saying “our hearts break for the loss of life.”

Construction plans for the 350-room hotel include a 12,000 square foot event space, two ballrooms and a residential space, according to a news release. Full Story

Kurds fighting Turks after U.S. withdrawal

The U.S. plans to withdraw 1,000 troops from northern Syria. Donald Trump tweeted on Sunday that it’s “very smart not to be involved in the intense fighting.” Turkish soldiers are attacking Kurdish fighters, who helped the U.S. combat ISIS. It’s estimated 130,000 people have been displaced due to violence. Roxana Saberi reports. Full Story

 

Nobel Prize in economics 2019 goes to Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo and Michael Kremer

Stockholm — The 2019 Nobel Prize in economics was awarded Monday to Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo and Michael Kremer for pioneering new ways to alleviate global poverty. Banerjee and Duflo are at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, while Kremer, an American is at Harvard University. The three have often worked together. Full Story

 

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Originally posted 2019-10-14 12:43:17.

Religious right sticks by Trump as political heat rises

Religious right sticks by Trump as political heat rises

Religious right sticks by Trump as political heat rises: As the threat of impeachment looms, President Donald Trump is digging in and taking solace in the base that helped him get elected: conservative evangelical Christians who laud his commitment to enacting their agenda.

Prominent evangelicals who have proven Trump’s most stalwart allies are staying in his corner for the impeachment fight, even as some push back against his withdrawal of U.S. troops from northern Syria — a move that imperils scores of Kurdish Muslims and Christians in the region.

Although Trump’s Syria pullback is alarming conservative Christians whose support he needs to win reelection, their rallying against his impeachment indicates a bond that appears strong enough to withstand the current foreign policy rift as 2020 balloting nears. Full Story

NTSB: Firm tied to collapsed Miami bridge wasn’t qualified

MIAMI (AP) — The firm that reviewed the design of a Miami university bridge that collapsed and killed six people last year was mistakenly listed in a Florida state report as qualified for that type of project even when it wasn’t, federal documents show.

The National Transportation Safety Board released nearly 6,300 pages of reports Tuesday examining the role of each contractor in the construction of the pedestrian bridge at Florida International University that collapsed March 15, 2018 onto eight cars.

NTSB says the Florida Department of Transportation listed the company Louis Berger Group, Inc. on a website-generated report as prequalified to evaluate the construction of a complex concrete bridge. FDOT told investigators it was a “technical error” on its website, as the company was not actually allowed to review that project.

In emails between FDOT representatives and an NTSB investigator, the state’s transportation department said firms involved in the project should not have simply relied on the website as proof of Louis Berger’s credentials, and should have done their own due diligence, such as seeing an actual letter of qualification from the state. Full Story

Originally posted 2019-10-11 16:47:23.

Brexit Boris Johnson Prime Minister

Brexit Boris Johnson Prime Minister

Brexit Boris Johnson Prime Minister: EU countries have agreed to “intensify” Brexit talks with the UK over the next few days.

The development comes after a meeting in Brussels between Brexit Secretary Steve Barclay and EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier, described by both sides as “constructive”.

But UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said there was “a way to go” before a deal could be reached.

The UK is due to leave the EU at 23:00 GMT on 31 October.

A European leaders’ summit next week is seen as the last chance to agree a deal before that deadline.

Mr Johnson put forward revised proposals for a deal last week, designed to avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland after Brexit.

Speaking on Friday, he said there was not “a done deal”, adding: “The best thing we can do now is let our negotiators get on with it.”
In a statement, the European Commission said: “The EU and the UK have agreed to intensify discussions over the coming days.”

BBC Brussels correspondent Adam Fleming said that, although there would be a “measure of confidentiality”, EU states would still be briefed on any developments.

In Paris, French President Emmanuel Macron was asked if there was hope of a deal, replying: “Let’s wait for the next few hours.”

Meanwhile, the pound rose to a three-month high against other major currencies, amid increased investor optimism over an agreement. Full Story

Nobel Peace Prize: Ethiopia PM Abiy Ahmed wins

The 2019 Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed who made peace last year with bitter foe Eritrea.

He was awarded the prize for his efforts to “achieve peace and international cooperation”.

Mr Abiy’s peace deal with Eritrea ended a 20-year military stalemate following their 1998-2000 border war.

He was named as the winner of the 100th Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, where he will receive the award in December. Full Story

 

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Originally posted 2019-10-11 16:29:41.