In the News

Aug 13, 2019

Behind closed doors, David Vigneault, director of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, has not shied away from singling out China, as the “greatest threat to our prosperity and national interest.”

Aug 13, 2019

Apple Inc. is offering to pay “ethical” hackers as much as US$1.5 million to find flaws in the company’s devices and software. It’s seen as a major step toward improving the company's internal security.

Aug 13, 2019

The list of Chinese products on which the U.S. plans to impose new 10 per cent tariffs Sept. 1 is being pared in response to pressure from domestic retailers. The tariff on cellular telephones, laptop computers and other goods is delayed to Dec. 15 to accommodate an expected surge of imports of Christmas-sensitive goods.

Aug 13, 2019

Russia draws on a mix of mercenaries and public relations in a bid to reassert its influence in Africa. Walls in the Central African Republic are plastered with propaganda posters proclaiming “Russia: hand in hand with your army!” even as army recruits are trained in Russian with Russian weapons. and local radio plays Russian ballads.

Aug 13, 2019

A U.S. federal appeals court has ruled that federal regulators bent the rules by trying to exempt 5G cellular sites from assessments of their effects on the environment and historical sites. Among other things, the court says the Federal Communications Commission failed to justify its position that smaller installations posed little to no risk.

Aug 13, 2019

Winding up a two-day visit to London, U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton has confirmed President Donald Trump’s support for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s push to quit the European Union. Bolton says the U.S. supports the Brexit movement “enthusiastically.”

Aug 13, 2019

Well before his first mandate would have expired, Premier Brian Pallister is going for a second term by kick-starting a 29-day campaign toward a Sept. 10 general election. In the last vote, in April 2016, his Progressive Conservatives unseated the incumbent New Democratic Party government.

Aug 13, 2019

Two Canadians detained in China, Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig, are being praised by Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland for their “grace” and “tenacity” as a diplomatic feud enters its eighth month.

Aug 13, 2019

The leaders of Canada’s five main political parties have been invited to participate in two nationally-televised debates in the runup to the Oct. 21 general election. The Liberals, Conservatives, New Democrats, Bloc Quebecois and Greens qualified for the Oct. 7 and 10 debates because they met several criteria, including having held at least one seat in the current Parliament, which excluded the fledgling People’s Party of Canada.

Aug 12, 2019

Two consistent and related themes in enterprise technology have emerged in recent years, both involving rapid and dramatic change. One is the rise of the digital enterprise across sectors and internationally. The other is the information technology sector's need to react quickly and develop innovations aggressively to meet the enterprise’s digital aspirations.

Aug 12, 2019

Nine people have now been sentenced for their role in the single largest immigration scam in British Columbia, helping more than 1,600 immigrants become Canadian citizens or permanent residents through passport fraud and other misrepresentation offences.

Aug 12, 2019

RCMP believe someone deliberately cut the inch-thick cable of the two-kilometre Sea-to-Sky gondola line, a popular tourist attraction along Highway 99 north of Vancouver. Not operating at the time, it usually carries up to 240 passengers at a time on its 30 cars.

Aug 12, 2019

Alejandro Giammattei, a conservative and former director of Guatemala’s prison system, has been elected to a four-year term as president. He captured 59 per cent of the vote compared with 41 per cent which went to centre-left candidate Sandra Torres. Giammattei has said he wants to amend his country’s immigration arrangement with the U.S.

Aug 12, 2019

An estimated 40,000 people in Colombia's Catatumbo region bordering Venezuela are reported to have been forced from their homes as armed groups fight for control of drug trafficking routes, according to Human Rights Watch. It’s one element of a broader security challenge Colombia faces since signing a 2016 peace deal with FARC guerrillas.

Aug 12, 2019

China’s central bank transferred $1 billion to Turkey in June. Beijing’s biggest support package ever for President Erdogan, it was delivered at a critical time (in an election month) and shows that Turkey is making headway in its efforts to diversify sources of foreign investment amid unprecedented tensions with the West.

Aug 12, 2019

U.S. federal regulators are accepting public comments until Aug. 28 on a proposal by Amazon to start limited drone parcel deliveries. Several years after it first broached the idea, it now proposes to deliver packages weighing less than five pounds directly to customers within 30 minutes of its distribution centre, which would mean the vehicles would operate beyond line-of-sight, currently prohibited in U.S. airspace.

Aug 12, 2019

A Helsinki-based startup company, Iceye, is using suitcase-size radar satellites to return images of objects smaller than a metre in size. That level of detail has until now has required satellites weighing a tonne or more and costing more than €100 million or some 50 times Iceye’s cost.

Aug 12, 2019

The RCMP officer heading Canada’s police presence in Mali says it will be doubled to 20 officers by the end of the year. Ten are currently deployed as part of the UN mission trying to bring stability to Mali amid an ethnic and jihadist insurgency.

Aug 12, 2019

All flights were cancelled at Hong Kong International Airport, one of the busiest hubs in the world, as thousands of demonstrators descended on the facility. However, the crowd evidently has begun to dwindle amid complaints about an aggressive police response.

Aug 12, 2019

The heat wave that smashed temperature records in western Europe last month was made more intense by human-caused climate change, according to a study by a respected team of European scientists. The study includes an array of evidence that man-made global warming is behind the continent's most recent heat wave.

Aug 12, 2019

The U.S. National Security Agency, headquartered at Fort Meade, Md., has been hiring highschool students to work “somewhere in cyber,” as one puts it. Others are equally vague, saying only that they work in language translation as well as cybersecurity.

Aug 12, 2019

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says his country must intervene against any foreign military presence in the Persian Gulf. Calling their presence a “source of insecurity.” In his media, posted on social media, he calls the Gulf a “vital lifeline.”

Aug 12, 2019

Months of dialogue between U.S. diplomats and Taliban representatives apparently have yielded a framework peace accord expected to be announced shortly. That deal could pave the way for direct talks between elected Afghan leaders and the insurgency.

Aug 12, 2019

Afghanistan’s president, Ashraf Ghani, says that even as the U.S. and the Taliban seem to be making progress on a peace agreement without the Afghan government at the negotiating table, his country’s fate should be “decided here in this homeland. He is counting instead on his country’s presidential election next month to give the leadership a mandate to shape Afghanistan’s future.

Aug 09, 2019

Even as China’s economic engine cools down, it continues to undergo one of the fastest growth rates in the world. A new report from the McKinsey Global Institute takes an in-depth look at the situation, noting China’s engagement in fields such as digital and technology, trade and the environment.

Aug 09, 2019

The third annual Rolling Barrage, a fund-raising cross-Canada motorcycle charity ride, will be stopping in Ottawa Aug. 11. The visit, beginning with the morning Changing of the Ceremonial Guard on Parliament Hill, will include the first annual Operation Resilient Maple, recognizing a member of the military hitherto overlooked for an achievement. Organizers hope to recognize first responders in later events.

Aug 09, 2019

Commercial vessels transiting the Strait of Hormuz and the Persian Gulf have reported interference with their Global Positioning System receivers and the U.S. Department of Transportation believes Iran is at fault. Its maritime administration is warning about a range of issues, including communications from unknown entities purporting to be naval escorts.

Aug 09, 2019

Bill Blair, the federal Minister of Border Security & Organized Crime Reduction, is rebuffing calls for a ban on handguns even as he acknowledges that more must be done to choke off the flow of illegal imports. The comments by the former Toronto Police Service Chief follow a spate of shootings in Toronto which prompted the city’s mayor, John Tory, to call for tighter controls.

Aug 09, 2019

The federal government is marking Aug. 9 as National Peacekeepers’ Day in honour of the more than 125,000 Canadian Armed Forces, police and civilians who have served on multinational missions around the world since 1956.

Aug 09, 2019

National Counterterrorism Center Director Joseph Maguire, a retired U.S. Navy SEAL vice-admiral, has been named by President Donald Trump as acting Director of National Intelligence. The current DNI, Dan Coats, is stepping down Aug. 15, as is Principal Deputy Director Sue Gordon.

Aug 09, 2019

Ongoing and frequently violent protests in Hong Kong have prompted the Canadian government to enhance its travel advisory for the former British colony. Travellers now are being advised to exercise “a high degree of caution” as crowds protest proposed legislation, now suspended, which would permit offenders to be extradited to China for trial.

Aug 09, 2019

David MacNaughton, Canada’s ambassador to the United States “at a pivotal time in our country’s history,” is retiring at the end of August. Deputy Ambassador Kirsten Hillman will be the acting ambassador until a formal successor to MacNaughton is appointed after the Oct. 21 federal election.

Aug 09, 2019

The number of mid-air conflicts between remotely-piloted and conventional aircraft in the first half of 2019 was higher than the same period last year. Transport Canada reports that despite new regulations and stiffer penalties, there had been 33 incidents reported mainly by commercial aircrews to June 30 compared with 24 in the first half of 2018 and 25 a year earlier.

Aug 09, 2019

Senior Canadian and U.S. military staff are reported to have agreed to an overhaul of the North America Aerospace Defence Command. Emerging threats, including North Korean ballistic missiles and rapidly advancing cruise missile technology evidently are among the reasons for the development.

Aug 08, 2019

U.S.-based Chase Bank is forgiving all outstanding debt owed by users of its two Canadian credit cards: the Amazon.ca Rewards Visa and the Marriott Rewards Premier Visa. The bank retired both cards last year but recently sent letters to all customers informing them about wiping all cardholders' debt so the company can complete its exit from the Canadian credit card market.

Aug 08, 2019

Teija Tiilikainen, Director of the Finnish Institute of International Affairs since 2010, has been appointed Director of the European Centre of Excellence for Countering Hybrid Threats for a five-year term.The agency brings together members of NATO and the EU to provide training on hybrid threats. Tiilikainen’s predecessor,Matti Saarelainen, moves Oct. 1 to the Finnish Security Intelligence.

Aug 07, 2019

The federal ethics commissioner has opened an inquiry into the conduct of B.C. Liberal MP Joe Peschisolido, whose former law firm is linked to a secretive 'bare trust'  real estate deal that helped an alleged Chinese “drug boss” hide his ownership stake in a $7.8 million condo development.

Aug 07, 2019

Pakistan is suspending trade with India in response to the latter’s decision to strip its portion of the mostly Muslim Kashmir region of its long-standing autonomous status. Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said Pakistan also plans to expel India's ambassador while its own newly-appointed ambassador to India had yet to take up his post.

Aug 07, 2019

Two persons have been arrested after a data breach at Revenu Quebec resulted in the release of the personnel files of 23,000 of the agency’s current and former employees. The agency says an internal investigation showed the data was not used for malicious purposes or sold to third parties.

Aug 07, 2019

U.S. President Donald Trump says there is a "very strong" political appetite in Congress for bipartisan legislation to require background checks or other restrictions on firearms ownership. for gun users. Leaving Washington to visit Texas and Ohio, where weekend shootings left 31 victims dead and dozens injured, he says he has had “plenty of talks” which suggest growing support among legislators.

Aug 07, 2019

Visits or calls from the Canadian Security and Intelligence Service or law enforement agencies, often to Muslim students, are said to be increasingly common at universities across the country. A University of Toronto law professor and a criminal lawyer said it's an issue few students apparently are willing to discuss because of the stigma.

Aug 07, 2019

Subject to confirmation by autopsy, the bodies of two British Columbia teenage fugitives suspected of three murders have been found in northern Manitoba. RCMP teams, backed by Canadian Armed Forces personnel at one stage, had been searching for Kam McLeod and Bryer Schmegelsky since late July.

Aug 07, 2019

The United States’ main Asia-Pacific allies are being warned by China that they risk countermeasures if they accept deployment of intermediate-range U.S. missiles,. Singling out Australia, Japan and South Korea, the foreign ministry says any deployments would “not serve the national seurity interests of these countries.”

Aug 06, 2019

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland has thanked Britain for its “strong and public stand” on the two Canadians detained by China. During a joint news conference with her British counterpart, Dominic Raab, she said freeing Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor is a priority as Canada navigates “challenging” circumstances.

Aug 06, 2019

Dwayne Charette has been appointed President of Airbus Helicopters Canada, replacing Romain Trapp, who has been promoted to President of Airbus Helicopters Inc.

Aug 06, 2019

Unusually aggressive wildfires in the Arctic are releasing waves of greenhouse gases, lasting longer, reaching deeper and burning at higher latitudes than in previous years, and experts say this is fuelled by climate change.

Aug 06, 2019

The United States administration has designated China as a currency manipulator after its central bank devalued the Yuan as the two countries' rrade dispute escalates. The announcement followed on the heels of President Donald Trump’s accusation on social media that China use currency exchange to steal U.S. business and undermine commodity prices.

Aug 06, 2019

China’s central bank is rebuffing U.S. claims that it devalued the Yuan in a bid to gain a competitive trade advantage, saying China is “resolutely oppose” to such practices.

Aug 06, 2019

As Hong Kong's pro-democracy protests continue to escalate in the former British colony,the commander of its People’s Liberation Army garrison says violence should not be tolerated. Meanwhile, a spokesman for China's Hong Kong and Macau Office said the local government and police were capable"of handling the protests.

Aug 06, 2019

A state of emergency has been declared around the Siberian city of Achinsk after a fire at a military depot set off huge explosions. Thousands of residents have been evacuated within a 20-kilomere radius around the depot.

Aug 06, 2019

Large-scale cyber attacks by North Korea evidently generated as much as $2 billion dollars which may be used to underwrite its weapons programs, according to a report presented to the United Nations North Korean sanctions committee. Among other things, the report cites forced transfers of funds from financial institutions and cryptocurrency exchanges.

Aug 06, 2019

As it launched its fourth in a series of missile launches in less than two weeks, North Korea has lashed out again at the United States and South Korea for continuing military exercises. There are suggestions that North Korea is trying to build leverage ahead of negotiations about its nucler capabilities.

Aug 05, 2019

Mass shootings in Texas and Ohio over the weekend prompted President Donald Trump to state that “hate has no place” in the U.S., but there are accusations that his own remarks over the years have been a factor. “Perhaps more has to be done,” he said after an attack in El Paso left 20 dead and another in Dayton claimed 11 lives.

Aug 05, 2019

India has revoked a section of its constitution which guarantees significant autonomy in Kashmir, a Muslim-majority border state which has been a flashpoint in relations with Pakistan ever since India’s independence and partition 62 years ago. Both nuclear power claim full control but, in fact, each controls only parts of it.

Aug 05, 2019

China’s central bank has permitted its Yuan to fall below the politically-sensitive level of seven to the U.S. dollar for the first time in 11 years, a possible precursor to a further escalation in the countries’ trade war. It came only a few days after President Donald Trump slapped more tariffs on imports from China.

Aug 03, 2019

No active shooter now, but numbers of casualties yet to be confirmed. One suspect is in custody, possible accomplice not being ruled out yet.

Aug 03, 2019

A Jordanian man who has been declared a danger to Canada’s security for spreading ISIS propaganda on the internet is being released from custody to live in rural B.C. while the government tries to deport him. Immigration and Refugee Board Member Geoff Rempel ordered the release of Othman Hamdan on Friday afternoon, rejecting Canada Border Service Agency’s concerns that he is a risk to national security.

Aug 03, 2019

At least 11 people died and 63 others rescued when three ferry boats separately capsized in bad weather Saturday between two central Philippine island provinces, the Philippine Coast Guard said.

Aug 02, 2019

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland finally managed to meet with her Chinese counterpart, Wang Yi, to discuss tensions following Canada’s arrest of a Huawei executive on a U.S. warrant last December and China’s subsequent detention of two Canadians. They met Aug. 2 on the sidelines of the Association of South East Asian Nations summit in Bangkok.

Aug 02, 2019

Five days after U.S. President Donald Trump announced that he would nominate John Ratcliffe to succeed Dan Coats as Director of National Intelligence, the Texas Republican congressman has withdrawn. Democrats excoriated him as a Trump loyalist who would undercut the traditional independence of the intelligence agencies and other Republicans had been unusually silent.

Aug 02, 2019

Green Party leader Elizabeth May suggested that “if” engineering firm SNC is found guilty on corruption and fraud charges, they should be forced to perform “community service” by repairing water infrastructure on native reserves. This solution “would keep the workers working. The shareholders of SNC-Lavalin wouldn’t like it, but maybe they should have paid more attention.”

Aug 02, 2019

Elliott Abrams, the U.S. administration’s special representative for Venezuela says Canada and the U.S. want the European Union to impose sanctions on the Nicolás Maduro regime in Venezuela.

Aug 02, 2019

Three of Canada's largest producers of bitumen from Alberta’s oilsands have kicked off a national bid for public support in the run-up to the Oct. 21 federal general election. In full-page ads in some 30 daily newspapers, they urge voters to press “leaders of all political stripes” to support the energy sector.

Aug 02, 2019

No sooner had U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo expressed official optimism about the prospect of satisfactory trade talks with China, set to resume next month, President Donald Trump ramped up the pressure with a statement that he will impose 10 per cent tariffs on the remaining $300 billion in Chinese imports he hasn't already taxed.

Aug 02, 2019

A $45-billion increase in the U.S. military budget, to $2.7 trillion over the next two years, has been approved by the Republican-controlled Senate. However, the vote of 67-28 divided the Republican majority with 30 voting “yes” and 23 voting “no”. The budget breakdown is $738 billion in 2020 and $740 billion in 2021 compared with $716 billion this year.

Aug 02, 2019

Advances in quantum computing evidently pose a threat to levels of encryption currently seen as secure. While a major breakthrough is not considered likely for several years, it is estimated that weaker cybersecurity algorithms will be vulnerable earlier.

Aug 01, 2019

After a meeting Aug. 1 in Thailand with China’s top diplomat, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo spoke out against Chinese "coercion" of Southeast Asian neighbors in disputes over the South China Sea and its dam-building on the Mekong River. However, Pompeo said both countries want to improve ties.

Jul 31, 2019

Osama bin Laden’s son, Hamza bin Laden, seen as an eventual heir to the Al Qaeda terrorist leadership, has been killed but other than that he died within the first two years of the current U.S. administration, when and where is unclear. His death was disclosed by anonymous U.S. officials.

Jul 31, 2019

The German government, which has resisted the use of military assets to protect commercial shipping in the Persian Gulf, evidently is worried that Britain may be drifting closer to an American-led response to Iranian activities, an approach previously rebuffed by France as well as Britain.

Jul 31, 2019

Canadian Armed Forces personnel helping police to track down two murder suspects in northern Manitoba have been withdrawn at the request of the police as the hunt stretched into its ninth day. “We want to be . . . focused with our own resources and determine where we should go from here," a police spokesperson explained.

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