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The House of Commons passed a non-binding motion late yesterday that came closer to mirroring existing government policy on the Israel-Palestinian conflict. The vote came after a day of tense negotiations between the Liberals and NDP that saw the New Democrats remove the most contentious part of their motion, which called on Canada to recognize the state of Palestine.

Just 20 minutes before the House was set to vote on the motion that would have split the government caucus, the Liberals announced a deal with the NDP to significantly amend the fourth-place party’s opposition day motion.

The changes to the non-binding policy statement removed the most controversial portion, which called for statehood recognition, and replaced it with the existing Liberal government policy on a negotiated two-state solution for Israelis and Palestinians and incorporated stronger language against Hamas.

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NDP leader Jagmeet Singh pays tribute to the late prime minister Brian Mulroney in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Monday, March 18, 2024.Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press

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Infectious-disease scientist fired from Winnipeg laboratory surfaces in China

One of two fired scientists at the centre of an RCMP investigation into a massive security breach at Canada’s top infectious-disease laboratory in Winnipeg is back in China and working with researchers from the Chinese military.

The Globe and Mail has learned that Xiangguo Qiu has been conducting research with Chinese military scientists and other virology researchers, including at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, on antibodies for coronavirus and the deadly Ebola and Nipah viruses.

Declassified documents tabled in the House of Commons on Feb. 28 show the couple had provided confidential scientific information to China and posed a credible security threat to Canada, according to the Canadian Security Intelligence Service.

Niagara Falls braces for record crowds hoping to take in eclipse’s path of totality

It’s called a totality: the period when the sun’s light is completely blocked by the moon in a solar eclipse. And Niagara Falls, Ont., will be smack-dab in the middle of the phenomenon’s shadowy path as it streaks across a strip of North America on April 8.

The city is bracing itself for an unprecedented weekend-long stargazing party that the city’s mayor says could attract up to a million onlookers, smashing all previous attendance records in a place that is already one of the top tourist destinations in the world.

The path of totality crosses directly over Niagara Falls, where astronomers predict the sky will darken for more than 3½ minutes, starting at 3:20 p.m., with a partial eclipse starting at 2:04 p.m.

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Also on our radar

Unplanned shutdown will affect fuel delivery to Winnipeg: Imperial Oil has shut down a key pipeline that supplies the Winnipeg area with gasoline, diesel and jet fuel, as the Calgary-based company scrambles to make repairs and find ways to continue transporting fuel to the city by truck and train.

B.C. prepares for dangerous wildfire season: Climate experts are warning that B.C.’s spring wildfire season could be worse than normal, and the provincial government is urging people to preregister for emergency support now to avoid long wait times in case they are forced from their homes.

Montana offers a glimpse into the fate of TikTok in the U.S.: Montana Attorney-General Austin Knudsen has been a strong defender of Donald Trump. But his attempts to ban Tik Tok has him at odds with the former president. Knudsen’s stance is a sign of the deep political fissures that are forming despite a bipartisan effort against the Chinese-owned app.

Argentina’s Javier Milei’s first 100 days in power: Argentinian President Javier Milei is already acting as advertised in Argentina. The self-described “anarcho-capitalist” who has become the newest darling of the global far right has brought his brand of shock and awe to the country of 45 million that he now leads. What’s next for Argentina under Milei?

Morning markets

U.S. stock index futures were little changed today as investors remained cautious ahead of the start of the Federal Reserve’s meeting. Wall Street closed higher yesterday, with the Nasdaq bouncing back from two small weekly losses, as growth stocks such as Alphabet and Tesla boosted the tech-heavy index.

All eyes are on U.S. central bankers who are expected to hold rates steady at the end of their two-day meeting tomorrow.

The Canadian dollar opened at 73.67 U.S. cents.

What everyone’s talking about

Editorial: “Canada’s federal carbon tax has reached a critical turning point. Its continued existence beyond the next election seems unlikely, and a scheduled increase of $15 per tonne of CO2 on April 1 is under withering political fire. Given the cost-of-living crisis in Canada, does it make sense to raise a tax that may be in its final months?”

Scott Stinson: “For a time, the arguments in favour of supporting women’s professional sports often came down to equality and visibility. But the growth stories of recent months show there is more to these leagues than just a diversity initiative. There’s a real business case to be made that women’s sports has room to grow, tapping into an underserved market numbering in the millions of fans, where men’s leagues have flattened. It appears Larry Tanenbaum has figured it out. Too bad his MLSE partners didn’t.”

Today’s editorial cartoon

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Illustration by David Parkins

Living better

Got knee issues? Here’s how to exercise without the pain

Time catches up to all of us, and when it does it’s often our knees that first sound the alarm. For those of us who exercise, knee pain can cause a lot of frustration. Here are some ways to modify your exercises to maintain a fitness routine, wonky knees and all.

Moment in time: March 19, 1945

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Mirrorpix/Getty Images

Hitler’s Nero Decree

Hitler ordered the destruction of the country’s bridges, power plants, communications systems and all other infrastructure. History cites two reasons for his order: to prevent the enemy from benefiting from Germany’s resources, and to punish the German people for losing. The Nero Decree, as it became known, was issued on this day in 1945, shortly after U.S. soldiers crossed the Rhine River and the Red Army advanced from the east. Hitler’s racist dream of a thousand-year Nazi rule was crumbling as Germany suffered defeat after defeat. The order was named for the Roman emperor who was said to have benefited from or even caused the Great Fire of Rome in 64 AD. Hitler’s subordinates, including Albert Speer, the minister responsible for carrying out the order, largely disobeyed it, perhaps signalling the dictator’s weakened authority. A month later, Hitler put a gun to his head and pulled the trigger. One week after his suicide in Berlin, Germany surrendered. Eric Atkins

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