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Good morning,

These are the top stories:

The RCMP made two arrests in Kingston as part of a national security investigation

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Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale said the RCMP and other police partners took action “based on credible information, to ensure public safety.”

The RCMP said it is “working closely” with Kingston police as part of an “ongoing and evolving situation.” One senior government official said the investigation is in its early stages and that the situation is “contained” with no threat to public safety. More information is set to be revealed at a press conference today.

This is the daily Morning Update newsletter. If you’re reading this on the web, or it was forwarded to you from someone else, you can sign up for Morning Update and more than 20 more Globe newsletters on our newsletter signup page.

The battle for power in Venezuela: What comes next

Nicolas Maduro remains defiant, refusing to back down from calls to leave his presidential post as he orders the closing of Venezuela’s embassy and consulates in the U.S. And while many Western countries support the leadership of self-appointed interim president Juan Guaido, the key to power lies with the country’s military, writes Latin America correspondent Stephanie Nolen.

On Thursday, the country’s Defence Minister delivered a speech, flanked by the heads of the armed forces, declaring the military’s support for Maduro. But that alliance could be tenuous: “The military is seeing virtually the entire country united [around Guaido],” said Ben Rowswell, who was Canada’s ambassador to Venezuela from 2014 to 2017. “They have a historical knack of picking a winner – and they will stick with the existing president up to moment that they change sides.”

Go here for the latest updates on the developing showdown.

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John McCallum apologized for his comments on Meng Wanzhou’s legal battle

Canada’s ambassador to China says he “misspoke” when he said the Huawei executive had a good chance of persuading a Canadian court to reject the U.S. request for her extradition. “These comments do not accurately represent my position on this issue,” he said in a statement.

McCallum’s initial comments drew calls for his resignation from opposition MPs and former Canadian diplomats, while commentators in China welcomed the remarks as support for Beijing’s assertion that the case is political.

There are no indications Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will seek McCallum’s resignation. The Prime Minister instead reiterated his government’s focus on freeing detained Canadians Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor.

Meanwhile, Bell and Telus confirmed that they have used Huawei gear as part of their efforts to build fibre-optic home internet (for subscribers). Discussion around the possible national-security implications of using Huawei equipment in Canada has so far centred on next-generation 5G technology, but the fibre links offer a glimpse at how entrenched the firm is in Canada. The fibre equipment is not part of the network core, where more sensitive data are stored.

Netflix is pushing back against calls to regulate streaming services in Canada

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The company is arguing it already contributes to Canadian content production and shouldn’t be subject to the same rules as traditional broadcasters like Bell and Rogers. “Market forces” are sufficient enough to motivate foreign-owned companies to invest in Canadian content, Netflix said in its submission to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission.

While Netflix says it’s on track to surpass a 2017 pledge to spend $500-million on productions north of the border, critics have said those investments are a way for it to avoid collecting sales tax. (Quebec and Saskatchewan have recently imposed a sales tax on Netflix.)

Got a news tip that you’d like us to look into? E-mail us at Need to share documents securely? Reach out via SecureDrop


The Conservatives are holding a $1,500-a-plate private fundraiser. The event at Senator Linda Frum’s Toronto home next week comes despite frequent Tory critiques of Liberal “cash-for-access” events that prompted changes to fundraising rules. (for subscribers)

First Nations and environmental groups launched legal action to force Ottawa to safeguard Alberta’s boreal caribou. They are calling for new protections for the iconic species scientists say is headed toward extinction.

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A figurehead in Scotland’s independence movement has been charged with attempted rape. Former Scottish first minister Alex Salmond, who helped drive the failed 2014 referendum, has also been charged with nine counts of sexual assault. He denied the charges and was released on bail.


Stocks rise

World stock markets inched higher on Friday as strong earnings helped to underpin investor sentiment in the face of growing signs that the global economy is slowing and a still unresolved trade dispute between the United States and China. Tokyo’s Nikkei gained 1 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng 1.7 per cent, and the Shanghai Composite 0.4 per cent. In Europe, London’s FTSE 100, Germany’s DAX and the Paris CAC 40 were up by between 0.2 and 1.5 per cent by about 7:05 a.m. ET. New York futures were up. The Canadian dollar is at 75.08 US cents.


Using the law’s hammer against Your Ward News was a mistake

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“Right-thinking people all over the country are applauding a judge’s decision to convict the editor and publisher of an awful little newspaper in Toronto’s east end of promoting hatred. They should not be. It’s always wrong to suppress speech, even the vilest kind. It is doubly wrong to use the criminal law to suppress it. Having an open society means guarding the right to think the unthinkable and say the unsayable, whomever it may offend.” – Marcus Gee

Social-media influencers are pretty; their meltdowns are anything but

“Alongside real-people, influencers are young celebrities casually sprinkling free goods through their designed-to-seem-intimate feeds. Some are said to be paid tens of thousands of dollars for even one Instagram post, which brings us to the meltdown of the moment, Fyre Festival. The failed music festival actually happened in 2017, but two documentaries on the saga were released last week.” – Denise Balkissoon

Canada’s money-laundering problem may be much worse than imagined

“A report on the matter commissioned by [B.C.’s] NDP government and released last June suggested as much as $100-million in dirty money was being tidied up at the cash windows of local casinos, among other places. It turns out that Peter German, a former deputy commissioner in the RCMP and the report’s author, was a little off in his estimation. Try a possible 10 times the amount of money being laundered in the province annually. Or even more.” – Gary Mason


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The flu shot is working better in Canada than it has in years

And it’s been especially effective for young children: The vaccine has protected 91 per cent of children between ages 1 and 8 from H1N1, the strain of influenza A that’s prevailed this season. The shot has also been 68-per-cent effective at preventing all types of influenza – a success rate not seen since the 2013-2014 season.


Taylor Henrich becomes first Canadian woman to win ski jumping medal

(Alexander Hassenstein/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Jan. 25, 2015: Taylor Henrich has a knack for making history in ski jumping – a sport that the International Olympic Committee only sanctioned for women in the past decade. So in 2012, when Henrich jumped first at the mixed event in the Winter Youth Olympics, she was the first woman to ever do so. In 2014, she made her Olympic debut, placing 13th in the individual normal hill event. And at just 19 years old, she put Canada on the ski-jumping map in 2015 – Henrich became the first Canadian woman to medal in the sport, earning bronze at the World Cup championships in Oberstdorf, Germany. This was just the beginning of her accomplishments, as Henrich went on to finish fifth at the World Championships later that year, a best-ever placement for a Canadian woman. She then won another bronze medal at the World Cup the next year. Three years later, Henrich was one of just two Canadians who competed in the ski jumping competition in Pyeongchang in 2018, along with 26-year-old Mackenzie Boyd-Clowes on the men’s side. – Shelby Blackley

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