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In The News for May 10 : Wildfires continue to rage throughout Alberta

In The News is a roundup of stories from The Canadian Press designed to kickstart your day. Here is what's on the radar of our editors for the morning of May 10 ... What we are watching in Canada ...

In The News is a roundup of stories from The Canadian Press designed to kickstart your day. Here is what's on the radar of our editors for the morning of May 10 ...

What we are watching in Canada ...

The Alberta government says fire danger continues to be extreme in most of the province except the Rockies, where lower danger levels were expected.

Some areas have experienced cooler temperatures and some rain, but the government says a return to hot and windy conditions is expected in the coming days.

Indigenous Services Canada said Tuesday that nine First Nations were under threat by active wildfires.

One of them was Sturgeon Lake Cree Nation, about 360 kilometres northwest of Edmonton, where 1,600 people were forced to leave after fire destroyed 45 structures and power infrastructure.

As of early Wednesday morning, Alberta's wildfire status dashboard was reporting 81 active wildfires in the province, including 27 listed as out of control.

Firefighters from Yukon, British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec have arrived in Alberta to help, and the government said late Tuesday that crews were also expected from New Brunswick, Oregon and Alaska.


Also this ...

A Nova Scotia man has filed a federal human rights complaint alleging discrimination after his husband's dying wish to donate bodily tissues was denied due to his sexual orientation.

Jacob MacDonald's complaint to the Canadian Human Rights Commission names multiple agencies including the Nova Scotia Health Authority, Health Canada, Canadian Blood Services and a tissue specialist.

Twenty-six-year-old Liam Dee died from a rare and aggressive cancer last November, when a donation screening form listed "homosexual status" as the reason for declining his tissues.

MacDonald says Dee was considered a high-risk tissue donor because he'd had sex with another man in the previous five years, cited as a factor in increased risk of transmitting H-I-V, hepatitis B and hepatitis C, even though the couple was in a monogamous relationship for four years.

He notes an advanced H-I-V test can detect the virus seven days after someone has been exposed so the five-year abstinence time frame doesn't make sense.

The abstinence period is 12 months in Canada, except in Nova Scotia and five other provinces where tissue banks are voluntarily accredited by an American organization, which requires five years of abstinence for men who have sex with men if they want to donate their tissues.

All the agencies named in the complaint have declined to comment before the commission reviews the case to determine if it will be forwarded to the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal.


What we are watching in the U.S. ...

Former U.S. President Donald Trump will return to CNN's airwaves on Wednesday, joining the network for a two-hour town hall event in early-voting New Hampshire a day after a civil jury found him liable for sexually assaulting an advice columnist nearly three decades ago.

The forum, which was publicly announced last week, was expected to be notable because it would be bringing together a network and a candidate who have long sparred with each other. But the stakes raised considerably Tuesday after jurors in New York found Trump had sexually abused and defamed E. Jean Carroll, though it rejected her claim that he raped her. The jury awarded her $5 million in damages.

While the civil trial verdict carries no criminal penalties, it nonetheless revives attention on the myriad investigations facing Trump, who was indicted in New York in March for hush money payments made to women who had accused him of sexual encounters. Trump is also facing investigations in Georgia and Washington over his alleged interference in the 2020 election and his handling of classified documents and potential obstruction of justice.

It also returns focus to questions over Trump's treatment of women over the years, raising the stakes for an event at which he will be forced to respond to tough questioning from host Kaitlan Collins and the audience. Carroll is one of more than a dozen women who have accused Trump of sexual assault or harassment over the years, allegations Trump has denied.

Trump historically has not reacted well when pressed on stage about his behaviour toward women, most notably during the first Republican presidential debate of 2015, when he sparred with then-Fox News host Megyn Kelly. He later said she had "blood coming out of her wherever'' when she was questioning him.

Trump has a much more contentious relationship with CNN than he had with Fox at the time. Trump has called the network "fake news'' and has sparred personally with Collins. She was once barred from a Rose Garden event after Trump's team got upset with her shouted questions at an earlier Oval Office availability.

The appearance will also serve as yet another contrast with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who is seen as a top rival to Trump for the GOP presidential nomination and is expected to launch his campaign in the coming weeks. DeSantis has taken a sheltered media approach, largely eschewing questions from the mainstream press while embracing Fox News, which was once a loyal Trump cheerleader but which Trump now frequently denigrates.


What we are watching in the rest of the world ...

ISLAMABAD _ Pakistan braced for more turmoil a day after former prime minister Imran Khan was dragged from court in Islamabad and his supporters clashed with police across the country. The 70-year-old opposition leader is expected in court later Wednesday for a hearing on keeping Khan in custody for up to 14 days.

Khan's Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party called for demonstrators to remain peaceful hours after mobs angered over the dramatic mid-trial arrest set fire to the residence of a top army general in the eastern city of Lahore.

Khan was appearing in court on multiple graft charges brought by Islamabad police Tuesday, when dozens of agents from the National Accountability Bureau backed by paramilitary troops stormed the courtroom, breaking windows after Khan's guards refused to open the door.

The arrest deepened the political turmoil and sparked violent demonstrations in which at least one person was killed in the southwestern city of Quetta, and dozens were wounded in various parts of the country.

Khan's supporters attacked the military's headquarters in the garrison city of Rawalpindi near the capital, Islamabad, but did not reach the main building housing the offices of the army chief Gen. Asim Munir. Other demonstrators tried to reach the prime minister's residence in Lahore, but were driven off by baton-wielding in police. Others attacked vehicles carrying troops and hit armed soldiers with sticks. So far, police and soldiers have not fired at protesters.

Shah Mahmood Qureshi, senior vice president from Khan's party, appealed for peaceful demonstrations Wednesday, urging "don't damage public property, don't attack offices, as we are peace lovers.'' Qureshi said the party is considering challenging the arrest in the Supreme Court. "I urge our party members to please continue peaceful protests, but do not attack public property, and do not do it.''

On Wednesday morning, police said that at least 2,000 protesters were still surrounding the fire-damaged residence of Lt. Gen. Salman Fayyaz Ghani, chanting slogans including "Khan is our red line and you have crossed it.'' Ghani and his family members were quickly moved to a safer place when the mob on Tuesday attacked their sprawling house.

Police deployed in force across the country, and placed shipping containers on a road leading to the sprawling police compound in Islamabad where Khan is being held. Khan will appear before a judge in the same compound later today, in a temporary court placed there for security reasons, according to a notice from the government.


On this day in 2006 ...

The federal cabinet approved a $2 billion deal to compensate former students of native residential schools for physical and sexual abuse.


In entertainment ...

NEW YORK _ This Buddy Holly no longer has to sigh, "That'll be the day.''

A petit basset griffon Vendeen named for the late rock 'n' roll legend won best in show at the Westminster Kennel Club dog show Tuesday night, a first for the rabbit-hunting breed. Buddy Holly bested six other finalists to garner the most prestigious dog show award in the United States.

"I never thought a PBGV would do this,'' handler and co-owner Janice Hayes said. "Buddy Holly is the epitome of a show dog. Nothing bothers him.''

Indeed, his white-tipped tail didn't stop wagging while he competed in the stadium where the U.S. Open tennis tournament's top matches are played. Not even while he posed for countless pictures after a win that Hayes called "so surreal.''

His competitors included Rummie, a Pekingese that came in second after aiming to bring home the third trophy in 11 years for his small-but-regal breed _ and for handler, owner and breeder David Fitzpatrick. He guided Pekes Malachy and Wasabi to Westminster wins in 2012 and 2021, respectively.

Winston the French bulldog was gunning for the title after coming oh-so-close last year. An Australian shepherd named Ribbon, an English setter called Cider, a giant schnauzer named Monty and an American Staffordshire terrier called Trouble also were in the pack of contenders.

If Buddy Holly was feeling the pressure, he wasn't letting it show ahead of the finals. Instead, he seemed more concerned late Tuesday afternoon with playing with his people and rejecting the notion of a nap in his crate.

Buddy Holly _ so named because "he's a buddy,'' breeder Gavin Robertson explained _ has also lived and competed in the United Kingdom, Ireland and Australia.

About 2,500 dogs of 210 breeds and varieties vied for the trophy. Among them: the newly eligible bracco Italiano breed, won by a dog co-owned by country music star Tim McGraw.


Did you see this?

The CBC and Radio-Canada are returning to Twitter after pausing activity last month over their designation as "government-funded media'' by the social media platform.

CBC News editor-in-chief Brodie Fenlon says in a blog post that it is resuming activity on a handful of umbrella accounts but will "significantly reduce'' its overall Twitter footprint.

In April, Twitter CEO Elon Musk applied tags to accounts belonging to the CBC and other outlets, including the BBC and National Public Radio, labelling them as "government-funded media.''

The tags had their wording changed multiple times without warning or explanation, before ultimately disappearing.

The CBC has said it does not meet Twitter's definition of "government-funded media'' and that its editorial independence is enshrined in the Broadcasting Act.

Fenlon says the CBC will continue to assess Twitter against its social media strategy.


This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 10, 2023.

The Canadian Press