Until recently, China has denied any connection between its detention of Canadians Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig and Canada’s arrest of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou. But Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian made the link yesterday when commenting on legal opinions that say Canada can intervene in Meng’s case.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has long maintained that Canada will let the judicial process decide Meng’s case, instead of intervening.
While Spavor and Kovrig were formally charged by Chinese authorities last week with espionage, they have been jailed since December 2018 – days after Meng’s arrest at Vancouver International Airport. In response, 12 senators have recently called for sanctions against Chinese officials partly over their arrests. The senators’ argument also cited China’s treatment of its Muslim minority and increasing restriction of freedoms in Hong Kong.
- ‘Something has to change’: Michael Kovrig’s letters detail life in a Beijing jail cell. His wife wants Canada to do more to free him
- Andrew Coyne: The justice minister has the power to free Meng. That doesn’t mean he should
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Ontario to allow workers who are asymptomatic to continue working to encourage testing
Premier Doug Ford announced yesterday that Ontario will allow asymptomatic workers who test positive for COVID-19 to continue working if they maintain distance from those who are negative. With heightened concerns around how migrant farm workers are more vulnerable to the pandemic because of unsafe labour and living conditions, the announcement prompted new criticisms about the prioritization of labour demands over workers’ health.
In the province, three Mexican migrant workers – Bonifacio Eugenio Romero, 31, Rogelio Munoz Santos, 24, and Juan Lopez Chaparro, 55 – have died of COVID-19, while more than 600 migrant workers have tested positive.
Kosovo’s President Hashim Thaci indicted on war crimes ahead of Trump peace summit
President Hashim Thaci, a commander in the Kosovo Liberation Army in the 1998-99 war that led to his country’s independence from Serbia, has been indicted on numerous war crimes by the Kosovo Specialist Chambers. The Hague-based court said that he and nine co-defendants – including Kadri Veseli, the leader of Mr. Thaci’s Democratic Party of Kosovo – were “criminally responsible for nearly 100 murders.”
The Kosovo Specialist Chambers made public the indictments ahead of a peacemaking summit between Serbia and Kosovo hosted in Washington by President Donald Trump. Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti – Mr. Thaci’s political rival – would replace Mr. Thaci at the summit.
Meanwhile, many in Europe - including the German government - worry that the U.S’s effort to broker a peace deal could lead to more instability in the region.
ALSO ON OUR RADAR
RCMP Commissioner faces scrutiny over systemic racism comments: MPs from all three major federal parties and some Indigenous leaders criticized Commissioner Brenda Lucki’s answers on systemic racism during her Tuesday testimony as “nonsense” and unconvincing. Some pointed to the violent arrest of Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation Chief Allan Adam – whose charges have now been dropped – as a major example of this issue.
Canada ranks among worst in OECD for long-term care deaths: A new report says over 80 per cent of Canada’s known COVID-19 deaths were in residents of nursing or retirement homes as of May 25. The Canadian Institute for Health Information attributed this largely to Ontario’s and Quebec’s failures to implement broad testing, mandatory use of personal protective equipment and isolation of infected residents.
B.C. abandons balanced budget law for three years: As the pandemic affects every sector of the province’s economy, Finance Minister Carole James says it may take three years to fully address this challenge. Meanwhile, B.C. has moved to its third phase of reopening, which restarts much of its tourism as well as film and production industries.
Global stocks sapped by coronavirus surge, recession gloom: World stocks spluttered to their lowest level in over a week on Thursday, as a surge in U.S. coronavirus cases and an IMF warning of a nearly 5-per-cent plunge in the global economy this year hit the bulls again. Just after 6 a.m. ET, Britain’s FTSE 100 was down 0.11 per cent. Germany’s DAX and France’s CAC 40 rose 0.48 per cent and 0.19 per cent, respectively. In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei ended down 1.22 per cent. New York futures were mostly weaker. The Canadian dollar was trading at 73.43 US cents.
WHAT EVERYONE’S TALKING ABOUT
B.C.‘s COVID-19 reopening plans put Indigenous people at risk
Joe Alphonse, Judith Sayers and Marilyn Slett: “Since the pandemic began, Indigenous leaders have exhorted government officials in vain to give us more information and resources to protect our communities. To date, our requests have been ignored.”
Hardballer Jean Chrétien could have ended the China conflict
Lawrence Martin: “Mr. Trump has said he could use the Meng case as a bargaining chip if necessary in trade negotiations with China. I got the impression from Mr. Chrétien, who is busy writing another book on his experiences, that he would rather have Canada be the one to use the Meng case as a bargaining chip than Washington or Beijing.”
We’re adapting to a new normal, but our COVID-19 alarm bells should still be ringing
Dan Gardner: “Slowly, the bizarre became routine. The feeling of menace ebbed. When you looked around, you saw that others were finally relaxing, and you relaxed some more.”
TODAY’S EDITORIAL CARTOON
Canned cocktails and wines are the perfect summer drink to go
The appeal of canned drinks used to revolve around convenience. But now, ready-to-drink products have become much more sophisticated and varied in selections, including 10 options here.
MOMENT IN TIME: June 25, 1950
The Korean War began
The Americans were caught by surprise. On June 25, 1950, about 75,000 soldiers of North Korea’s People’s Army, supported by the Soviets and the Chinese, poured across the 38th parallel, the arbitrary border between communist North Korea and United Nations – and United States-backed South Korea, and kept going. Within three days, Seoul was captured and the North Koreans kept going, boxing the Americans, who entered the war in July, and their allies into the peninsula’s southeast corner, after which they fought vicious back-and-forth battles that marked the Cold War’s first military campaign. It could have expanded into a Third World War if general Douglas MacArthur, U.S. commander in Asia, had got his way – he wanted to attack China. U.S. president Harry Truman ended that idea in 1951 by firing him. On July 27, 1953, an armistice was signed that drew a modified boundary along the 38th parallel. The casualties on both sides were massive for a war fought on a relatively small bit of real estate. About three million died, most of them civilians, a higher toll than the Vietnam War in the next decade, another land war that denied the Americans outright victory. Canada played its part in Korea, losing more than 500 soldiers. Eric Reguly