Sunday, July 17, 2011

RCI Cyberjournal

Edition 16 July 2011
Canadian International Sports Weather


A Canadian subsidiary of the Shell Oil company is selling its stake in the 16-billion-dollar Mackenzie pipeline project in Canada's Northwest Territories. Shell Oil has an 11-per-cent stake in the megaproject which would see a pipeline move natural gas from the Beaufort Sea to the northern province of Alberta. Backers of the long-delayed project say the earliest gas could start flowing through the proposed 12-hundred-kilometre pipeline would be 2018.


Questions are being raised about the management of Canada's 50-million-dollar national shipbuilding program following a bookkeeping review. It says the so-called Structured Financing Facility lacked any rigorous reporting on how well the money was spent. The program was implemented in 2007 to keep shipyards operational so they could bid on 35-billion dollars worth of federal shipbuilding expected over the next 30 years. The review says bureaucrats did not properly monitor eight projects that received millions in federal subsidies, leaving no record of information such as the number of jobs created.


The death of a horse in a chuckwagen race has led to the biggest fine ever levied at the Calgary Stampede. The horse belonging to Jim Knight was found to have a broken leg at the end of a race and had to be put to death. Videos show that the horse was injured as a result of an error by another driver, Cliff Cunningham. Mr. Cunningham admitted his error. He was fined CDN$12,500. It was the second horse to die during a Stampede chuckwagen race this year. In 2010, six horses had to be destroyed during the Calgary Stampede as a result of injuries.


Canada's national parks celebrated their one hundredth anniversary on Saturday. Canada opened the world's first national parks service in 1911. Today, Parks Canada oversees 42 national parks with five thousand employees. Many events to mark the centenary are planned. On Saturday, entry to all Canada's national parks is free.


Victims of one of Canada's worst financial scams demonstrated outside a Royal Bank office in Montreal on Saturday to draw attention to their lawsuit. The demonstrators were once clients of Earl Jones, a financial adviser who was found guilty of defrauding people of 40 million dollars. He's serving an 11-year prison sentence. His victims say that the Royal Bank should have been more aware of Jones' scheme. Royal Bank has offered the victims compensation of CDN$12.5 million to settle their class action lawsuit. The victims are asking for CDN$40 million.


A small Canadian regional airline was ordered to stop flying on Saturday out of concern for passenger safety. Transport Canada withdrew the operating certificate for Missinippi Airways of Manitoba after inspecting a crash that killed a man earlier this month. Further regulatory action is possible. The man was killed when a small commercial plane slid off a runway in the northern community of Pukatawagan, about 800 kilometres north of Winnipeg. The plane's other passengers were taken to a local nursing station for treatment. Missinippi Airways must show that it meets safety standards before it may fly again.


A Canadian economic research group has a positive economic outlook for Canada. But despite Canada;s success, the Conference Board of Canada says the United States still faces huge economic problems with its more than 1.3 trillion dollar a year deficit. The Board says Canadian businesses need to intensify their efforts to innovate and diversify their sales to handle the economic troubles south of the border.


Some critics are upset over next week's meeting of Canada's energy ministers in the western Canadian province of Alberta. It's because the gathering in Kananaskis is sponsored by some of the major players in the energy industry. Ministers from the federal government, the ten provinces and the three territories hope to lay the groundwork for a national energy strategy. Federal natural resources minister Joe Oliver says the government has no intention of stepping on provincial toes when it comes to jurisdiction over energy matters.


The international airport in St. John's Newfoundland, returned to operation on Saturday after a cargo plane overshot the runway during landing that morning. None of the three crew members on board was hurt, but some runway lights were damaged. Regular airport traffic was diverted to another of the airport's two main runways. The cargo plane's tires suffered damage.



At least 12 Libyan rebels were killed on Saturday as rebel forces saw their worst one-day losses since they began their offensive against Colonel Moammar Gaddafi's forces earlier this year. Seventy-nine others were injured. The rebels' latest offensive against the government-controlled town of Brega began on Thursday. Since then, 178 people have suffered injuries. Many of the latest injuries were caused by landmines. Along with landmines, rebels say that Gaddafi forces dug defensive trenches filled with flammable chemicals around Brega. Canada and the United States were among 30 countries that voted on Friday to release Libya's frozen foreign assets to Libyan rebels. The so-called CONTACT group of nations met in Istanbul. Their decision could free billions of dollars in assets, some of which could eventually go to the main Libyan rebel group.


Militants attacked two NATO oil tanker trucksat separate locations on Saturday, killing three people and wounding 16 others. The first attack took place near a market in a suburb of Peshawar. A remote-controlled bomb under the oil tanker triggered a huge fire that destroyed up to 100 shops. Two people were killed and 15 others were wounded. The second attack occurred around 10 kilometres from the site of the first. Militants opened fire on another oil tanker in the town of Jamrud, killing the driver and wounding his helper. Both trucks were carrying fuel for NATO troops in Afghanistan. In another violent incident, gunmen fired on a bus, killing seven people in Pakistan's northwestern tribal district.


Some 350 Syrian dissidents met in Turkeyon Saturdayto discuss strategies to oust President Bashar Al-Assad and his government. The gathering in Istanbul, titled the National Salvation Congress, is expected to endorse a roadmap aiming to take the country from the state of totalitarianism and tyranny towards democracy. Organizers say participants came from various countries and belonged to many different opposition groups. Meanwhile, reports indicate that Syrian security force killed at least 28 protesters Friday including 16 in the capital Damascus. Syrian activists say it was a clampdown on the largest anti-regime rallies in four months. More than one million people marched in the streets in the cities of Hama and Deir Ezzor.


Three NATO soldiers were among nine people who were killed in the latest attacks in Afghanistan. One attack involved an assailant in an Afghan army uniform who shot a NATO soldier at a military compound in Helmand Province. The Taliban called the attacker a sleeper agent who had infiltrated the Afghan military. The number of similar cases has risen as Afghan troops move closer to take over the country's security by 2014. The nationality of the three slain NATO soldiers was not initially reported. Canadian forces in Afghanistan ended their combat mission this month. About one thousand Canadian soldiers are being deployed to act as trainers for Afghan troops.


Venezuela's president will return to Cuba for further chemotherapy for cancer. But Hugo Chavez generated controversy among the opposition when he asked to retain his responsibilities as president. The opposition wanted him to delegate his duties to the vice-president. But Venezuela's legislators approved Mr. Chavez's request. Mr. Chavez was in a Cuban hospital in June to undergo surgeries to remove an abscess and a cancerous tumour in his pelvic region. He made a surprise return home on July 4.


U.S. President Barack Obama met on Saturday with the Dalai Lama at the White House. The two Nobel Peace laureates last met in February, 2010. The White House says that Mr. Obama wants to show his support of Tibetan culture as well as Tibetan human rights. Predictably, their meeting has drawn criticism from China's government, which accuses the Dalai Lama of promoting a separatist Tibet independent of China's rule. The Tibetan spiritual leader is in Washington for an eleven-day Buddhist celebration. On Wednesday, thousands of expatriate Tibetans joined him to celebrate his seventy-sixth birthday.


In Mexico, at least 10 police officers and one civilian have been killed in the state of Sinaloa after they were ambushed by a group of heavily armed men. The officers belonged to a security detail of Francisco Cordova, Sinaloa's public security secretary. He was was not traveling with his bodyguards at the time of the attack. Some 37,000 people have been killed since Mexico launched a massive military crackdown in December 2006 on drug cartels, which have waged territorial wars with each other and repeatedly clashed with security forces. Sinaloa has been the site of a bloody confrontation among leading Mexican drug cartels fighting over lucrative narcotics supply routes leading to the United States.


The European rights court will accept a complaint lodged against Russia by families of the victims of the Soviet-era Katyn massacre of Polish officers during World War Two. Relatives of a dozen of the estimated 22,000 Polish officers shot dead in the forest of Katyn in western Russia in 1940 brought the case to the Strasbourg-based European Court of Human Rights two years ago. The plaintiffs accuse Russia of failing to carry out an adequate investigation into the deaths. In 2004, Russian military prosecutors angered Poland by closing an investigation into the killings, refusing to acknowledge the massacre as either a war crime or a crime against humanity. In April Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev called the killing of thousands of Polish officers in 1940 a crime for which the Soviet leadership bore sole responsibility. The Soviet leadership had tried to hide the 1940 mass execution and Russia's parliament only placed formal blame on the dictator Joseph Stalin last November.


The head of the Roman Catholic Church, Pope Benedict, has denounced the latest ordination of a Bishop in China without his approval. The Pope say the Bishop acted in defiance of the Vatican's request not to accept the ordination and has incurred automatic excommunication. The Pope also said he deplores the manner in which the Roman Catholic Church in China is being treated. The Reverend Joseph Huang Bingzhang was consecrated as Bishop of Shantou a few days ago. The Vatican insists the Pope has sole right to appoint bishops. China's Communist Party leaders see that position as foreign interference. China's 5.7 million Catholics are in a sensitve position between showing allegiance to the Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association or to the Pope. The Vatican has not had formal diplomatic relations with Beijing since 1951.


The head of a global media empire, that includes newspapers in Britain, is publicly apologizing for the phone hacking scandal that has shaken his organization. Rupert Murdoch issued the apology today in full-page ads in all London newspapers. The ad carries the headline "We Are Sorry". There's also a letter from Mr. Murdoch saying he regrets not acting faster to sort things out. He says his company should have done better and will do better.


Two more people have died following Wednesday's triple bombing in Mumbai, India. That raises the death toll to 19. More than 100 bomb victims are still in hospitals in Mumbai, the financial capital of India. No one has claimed responsibility for the attacks, and police are not speculating publicly about suspects. Security officials are trying to find evidence at the three blast sites.




Canadians Emilie Heymans and Jennifer Abel won the silver medal in the women's three-metre synchronized springboard Saturday at the world aquatic championships in Shanghai, China. China's Wu Minxia and He Zi took gold. Australia's Anabelle Smith and Sharleen Stratton earned the bronze.


Montreal will be the host city for the 2014 FINA World Masters Championships. The two-week international swimming event is expected to attract between 8,000 and 10,000 athletes from 60 countries.



The New York Yankees beat the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday, 4-1.




In Canadian Football League action on Friday, Montreal defeated Toronto 40-17. Montrel quarterback Anthony Calvillo set the C-F-L record for touchdown passes. The 18-year veteran broke Damon Allen's mark of 394 touchdown passes with an eight-yard pass to Eric Deslauriers in the first quarter. Montreal linebacker Chip Cox tied a league record when he recovered a fumble and ran it 108 yards for a touchdown.



Here is Canada's weather on Sunday, July 17. British Columbia will have sunny periods. The high temperature in Vancouver will be 20 degrees Celsius. The Yukon: variable cloudiness. Whitehorse, 19. Northwest Territories: mainly sunny. Yellowknife, 22. Nunavut: showers. Iqaluit, seven. Alberta: variable cloudiness. Edmonton, 29. Saskatchewan: sunny. Regina, 33. Manitoba: sunny. Winnipeg, 34. Ontario: sunny. Toronto: 35. Ottawa, 34. Quebec: mainly sunny. Montreal, 32. New Brunswick: mainly sunny. Fredericton, 32. Nova Scotia: mainly sunny. Halifax, 28. Prince Edward Island: variable cloudiness. Charlottetown, 28. Newfoundland: sunny periods. St. John's, 17.

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