These are the top stories:
A former SNC-Lavalin executive has been found guilty on corruption charges
Sami Bebawi was convicted on all five charges, including bribing a foreign public official, fraud and laundering the proceeds of crime. The 73-year-old is so far the only person convicted in Canada in the sprawling investigation into SNC’s work with the regime of the late Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi.
The impact: The verdict is expected to shore up Canada’s international reputation for fighting corruption. “Executives of Canadian companies will think twice before engaging in this activity because they know now that they can’t hide behind a company,” said lawyer John Boscariol, who was not involved in the trial.
Another case: SNC has also been charged with bribery and fraud over its dealings in Libya. A trial will likely take place next year, barring an intervention by the federal Attorney-General. (That case was thrown into the spotlight earlier this year amid allegations that the Prime Minister’s Office put pressure on then-AG Jody Wilson-Raybould to drop the charges in favour of a deferred prosecution agreement.)
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Montreal-based Power Corp. is deepening its ties to a Chinese political dynasty
Bo Guagua is the son of a former Communist Party star who’s now in jail. And he’s working for Power Corp., which has long had business interests in China.
To some China experts, Power Corp.’s decision is “a bit mind-boggling.” That’s because Bo’s father, Bo Xilai, had challenged Xi Jinping’s leadership ambitions. “I don’t suppose Power Corp. would want to cultivate the image of employing the son of one of Xi Jinping’s major enemies,” said Willy Lam, who’s based at The Chinese University of Hong Kong.
But Power Corp. has had a relationship with the Bo family for decades. The decision to maintain those links sheds light on the intricacies of Chinese political power, Nathan VanderKlippe reports.
Madrid climate talks ended in failure, with key decisions delayed until 2020
COP25, the world’s longest-ever climate summit, failed to produce an agreement on Article 6 – a rule book that would put a price on carbon and create a global trading market for credits. Talks to produce the measure that’s seen as key to reducing global emissions will be discussed next November.
Chile’s Environment Minister said action taken at COP25 was “insufficient to tackle the crisis of climate change with urgency.” Canada’s Environment Minister Jonathan Wilkinson also said he was “disappointed” in the lack of results.
As we grapple with a climate crisis, Vancouver-based writer Eleanor Boyle says it’s time to talk about rationing: “We need to immediately put the brakes on consumption, with everyone sharing the burden.”
Cases on Trans Mountain and the carbon tax head to appeals courts
A second round of consultations on the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project failed to address First Nations’ concerns, the Federal Court of Appeal will hear this week. Several First Nations are seeking to reverse Ottawa’s decision from earlier this year to reapprove the project. Pipeline construction began in Alberta this month.
Premier Jason Kenney’s government is taking its fight against the federal carbon tax to Alberta’s top court this week. Alberta will argue that the tax gives Ottawa too much power, upending the balance between provinces and the federal government. The hearing follows rulings in Ontario and Saskatchewan courts, which concluded that the tax is constitutional.
ALSO ON OUR RADAR
Cineplex agrees to be acquired by U.K.'s Cineworld: The proposed deal announced early Monday morning is worth $2.8-billion in cash and assumption of net debt. Cineworld has offered $34 per share for the Toronto-based company’s outstanding common shares.
Trump impeachment vote looms: The U.S. House of Representatives is expected to vote this week on whether to approve two articles of impeachment against the President. Should the vote fall largely along party lines in the Democratic-controlled House, Trump will become just the third U.S. President to be impeached.
Harper played role in Tory executive’s firing: A source tells The Globe that the former prime minister and other Conservative Fund directors decided to fire the party’s executive director amid concerns about a backlash from donors over the payment of tuition fees for Andrew Scheer’s children.
Cryptocurrency used in trafficking: Canada’s anti-money-laundering watchdog has seen an increase in reports flagging the use of virtual currencies such as bitcoin in sex-trade trafficking.
Protests around the world: In Lebanon, police fired tear gas and rubber bullets at protesters demonstrating against government corruption amid an economic crisis. In Delhi, more than 100 were injured by police as protesters rallied in opposition to a new Indian citizenship law that critics say discriminates against Muslims. And in Hong Kong, protesters marched through shopping malls.
World stock markets rose today, trading a notch below a record high hit last week on the back of a preliminary trade deal agreed between the United States and China. European shares built on the previous week’s gains at the open. In early deals, the pan-European STOXX 600 index was up by 1 per cent and hit a record high. Germany’s DAX rose 0.5 per cent. Britain’s FTSE 100 index was up 1.14 per cent, moving in tandem with the pound which rose 0.4 per cent..
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WHAT EVERYONE’S TALKING ABOUT
China’s ‘magical reality’ is a growing threat
Maya Wang: “The Chinese government ... seems to be practising a kind of reality engineering in which it is using its coercive and information machinery to generate enemies, be they Islam, an independence movement or imperialistic plots.” Maya Wang is a senior China researcher at Human Rights Watch.
Sometimes the best way to stay together is to remain apart
Sharon Hyman: “David and I met when I was in my 30s, and having separate households worked best at the time owing to our dramatically different work schedules. But as our relationship deepened, so did the realization that this was the perfect arrangement for us.” Sharon Hyman is currently directing the documentary Apartners: Living Happily Ever Apart.
TODAY’S EDITORIAL CARTOON
How deep-brain stimulation treats disorders
Frank Plummer’s research has helped save the lives of countless others. Now, Wency Leung reports, the microbiologist and infectious-disease expert is helping scientists test an experimental treatment that may save his own.
Plummer, an Officer of the Order of Canada whose work, particularly in HIV/AIDS, has shaped prevention strategies internationally, is the first participant in a Toronto trial that is using deep-brain stimulation to treat alcohol-use disorder.
“It’s given me my life back," he said. “I have a lot more joy for life.”
MOMENT IN TIME
For more than 100 years, photographers have preserved an extraordinary collection of 20th-century news photography for The Globe and Mail. Every Monday, The Globe features one of these images. This month, we’re looking at the thrill of comedy.
Second City cast in Toronto, 1974
On a cold Chicago night, Dec. 16, 1959, the new comedy company Second City opened its doors. The carpet was still being nailed down as the audience entered the premises. The first show began with Barbara Harris in a spotlight singing Everybody’s in the Know. An iconic franchise was born, and maybe the term “cold open” was, too. Nearly 15 years later, after a failed attempt in 1973, a Toronto branch of Second City found a home in a 19th-century firehouse called the Old Fire Hall. An early cast, seen here in 1974, included, from left: Eugene Levy, Dan Aykroyd, Gilda Radner, Rosemary Radcliffe and John Candy. Drawing on Second City talent, television shows Saturday Night Live and SCTV would come after in 1975 and ’76, respectively. – Brad Wheeler