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Good evening, let’s start with today’s top stories:

Donald Trump faces new charges

Former U.S. president Donald Trump faces 37 criminal counts including charges of unauthorized retention of classified documents and conspiracy to obstruct justice after he left the White House in 2021, according to federal court documents made public today.

The Justice Department unsealed the documents on a day in which two of Trump’s lawyers quit the case and a former aide faces charges as well. This is the second criminal indictment in as many months for the former U.S. president. The new charges relate to accusations that Trump took classified documents from the White House after he left office, stashed them at his Florida estate and then refused to give some of them back for more than a year. Trump remains the leading contender for the Republican nomination.

The criminal case will be initially overseen by U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon, who issued rulings favourable to Trump last year and expressed repeated skepticism of Justice Department positions. Cannon was broadly criticized last year for granting the Trump legal team’s request for a special master to conduct an independent review of the hundreds of classified documents seized from his Florida property.

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Leopard tanks from Canada deploy in Ukraine, as evidence of counteroffensive mounts

Leopard battle tanks, donated to Ukraine by Canada and other Western countries, are reported to be in action in southern Ukraine, evidence that the long-anticipated counteroffensive to liberate Russian-occupied territories has begun, Mark MacKinnon reports.

Earlier today, Russian bloggers were describing the first sightings of German and U.S. armour along the front in southern Ukraine. It was impossible to assess whether Ukraine was succeeding in penetrating Russian defences to drive out occupying forces. The counteroffensive is ultimately expected to involve thousands of Ukrainian troops.

Secret Canada

Canada was among the first countries to enact freedom of information legislation. That was 40 years ago. But today, after decades of neglect, our system is broken.

For the past 20 months, The Globe has been investigating how and why the system has come apart. The investigation involved hundreds of interviews, an analysis of thousands of government records and appeals decisions, as well as a national audit of FOI statistics and practices. Our reporting has shown that – at a time of plummeting trust in government and institutions – every day, public bodies and governments at every level are breaking the law.

FOI units are starved of resources and staff. Institutions can no longer meet their statutory deadlines. The laws themselves are impractical in a digital world. And it is normal for institutions to refuse to release records that judges and adjudicators have repeatedly said are public.


Air quality improves for Toronto, smoke lingers in northern Ontario, western Quebec

Toronto residents breathed a bit easier today as wildfire smoke that had hung over the city for several days finally cleared, resulting in a notable improvement in air quality. Meanwhile, communities in northern Ontario and western Quebec saw pollution warnings and hazy skies.

In Alberta, Fort Chipewyan was on an evacuation order as a nearby fire burned out of control. Meanwhile, Edmonton and Calgary saw moderately bad air quality.

Canada sheds jobs for the first time in nine months, unemployment ticks up to 5.2%

Canada’s strong labour market hit a road bump in May, shedding jobs for the first time in nine months, with losses concentrated among younger workers. Total employment fell by 17,300, while the unemployment rate ticked up to 5.2 per cent.

The jobs report comes two days after the Bank of Canada raised interest rates for the first time since January, partly in response to concerns about labour market tightness.

Duelling protests over LGBTQ rights outside Ottawa schools draw hundreds

Hundreds of people rallied against what an organizer calls “gender ideology” near three west-end Ottawa schools today, as hundreds more joined a counter-protest in support of transgender rights. Police made five arrests.


Canada’s main stock index moved lower today after a week that saw the central bank raise interest rates, with the market’s move led by weakness in industrials, while U.S. markets ticked higher ahead of the country’s own rate announcement next week.

The S&P/TSX composite index was down 50.64 points at 19,892.06. In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 43.17 points at 33,876.78. The S&P 500 index was up 4.93 points at 4,298.86,while the Nasdaq composite was up 20.62 points at 13,259.14.

The loonie was trading at 74.96 cents (U.S.), up 0.09 cents.

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How the invasion of Ukraine is repainting the map of the Balkans

Doug Saunders: “Ukraine itself was once a country whose leader backed Mr. Putin while its people favoured the EU. Resolving that dilemma required a revolution in 2014 and a change of leaders, and showed the world how important a path to EU membership can be in keeping countries democratic.”

When cities applaud dismantling bike lanes, we are going backward

Marsha Lederman: “Let me state the obvious: Riding a bike is good for your health. It’s also good for our collective urban health. Rather than increase congestion, bike lanes move traffic along. This isn’t just about convenience and the environment, but safety.”


Camping out in the great outdoors

Since the pandemic, the popularity of camping has soared across the country. In Ontario, more than 6.6 million people visited provincial parks in 2021, up from 4.3 million in 2014.

If you’re a camping newbie, or if you just want some tips, Scouts Canada has launched a hotline offering a series of prerecorded “tips and tricks” curated by Scouts to help demystify the activity.

Meanwhile, Ian Brown takes a look at Chris Nuttall-Smith’s new cookbook, Cook It Wild: Sensational Prep-Ahead Meals for Camping, Cabins and the Great Outdoors. It all boils down to this: Anyone can eat fabulously in the wildest of places, as long as you prepare ahead of time. And in case you have images of hot dogs and baked beans – fear not. As long as you adhere to a few central principles: Chop Ahead, Mix Ahead, Cook Ahead, Seal Ahead and Freeze Ahead, then your camping menu can be as delicious as your imagination allows.


The story behind Secret Canada

Late in 2021, two Globe and Mail investigative reporters – Robyn Doolittle and Tom Cardoso – sat down to talk about freedom of information. They had decided that enough was enough. If Canada’s broken access system wasn’t going to improve on its own, they would give it a push.

Read how those early conversations drew in others across the newsroom and grew into a website that would act as a clearinghouse of information on FOI.

Evening Update is written by Andrew Saikali. If you’d like to receive this newsletter by e-mail every weekday evening, go here to sign up. If you have any feedback, send us a note.

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