24. 09. 2018
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Stroman shines in Blue Jays’ win over Red Sox – Toronto

Stroman shines in Blue Jays’ win over Red Sox – Toronto

TORONTO – After suffering through three straight extra-innings defeats, the Blue Jays won stylishly in regulation Wednesday thanks to a strong outing by rookie pitcher Marcus Stroman and a three-run homer by pinch-hitter Danny Valencia.

Jose Bautista also homered for the second day in a row as Toronto defeated the Boston Red Sox 5-2.

Story continues below HangZhou Night Net

Toronto (67-66) scored four runs — including two unearned — in the seventh inning with Valencia recording his first homer as a Jay. That made a winner out of Stroman, who was on cruise control other than hitting a two-run bump in the sixth inning.

“He was terrific today,” Toronto manager John Gibbons said of the 23-year-old right-hander. “We’ve seen him like that a few times this year so it’s not like all of a sudden that came out of nowhere. But he had been in a little bit of a rut.

“But that’s what the kid’s capable of.”

The Jays, who had gone 1-3 during a run of four straight extra-inning games, can now look forward to an off-day before hosting Derek Jeter and the New York Yankees on Friday.

Stroman (8-5) left to an ovation from the Rogers Centre crowd of 30,285 with two outs in the eighth. He gave up one unearned run on five hits, striking out six and walking one. Stroman threw 112 pitches, 73 for strikes.

“He was sticking that fastball,” said Gibbons. “It was down at the knees most of the night which is different (from) when he struggles. And he had that nice little breaking ball.”

Left-hander Brett Cecil retired David Ortiz to end the eighth inning and struck out the side in the ninth for his fifth save.

The win was just Toronto’s seventh in 23 games in August. The Jays had lost 10 of their last 13 games and 12 of 17.

Boston (58-75) came into the game having won two in a row since snapping an eight-game losing streak.

Stroman has struggled of late, losing his last three decisions. But he was razor-sharp Wednesday, retiring the first eight batters he faced before issuing a walk. He retired 10 of 11 before giving up a walk to Ortiz with one out in the fourth inning with the damage quickly erased by a double play.

He allowed just one hit and faced 16 batters in the first five innings, just one over the minimum.

Contrast that to his last outing, when he gave up 10 hits and six runs in five innings against Tampa Bay. prior to that he failed to survive the first inning against the White Sox, yielding five runs on five hits.

Like Gibbons, Stroman pointed to keeping his fastball down as a key for the turnaround.

“It’s just baseball,” he added. “Sometimes you just go through a rough stretch.”

Confidence is not an issue for Stroman, whose baseball cap — jauntily worn backwards during a post-game interview — read FAME on the front.

Stroman has won all three starts against Boston, posting an 0.83 earned-run average with five walks and 21 strikeouts.

Stroman’s strong showing was timely given that Toronto had used 10 pitchers and a position player on the mound the last two games.

Things went slightly south in the sixth, however, with the Jays leading 1-0. Third baseman Juan Francisco’s throwing error put David Ross on with one out and Ortiz singled him home after back-to-back singles by Brock Holt and Dustin Pedroia loaded the bases. Holt then scored from third on a wild pitch to make it 2-1.

Stroman limited the damage, dispatching the next two batters to strand Red Sox runners on second and third.

Red Sox starter Joe Kelly was stingy in his first appearance against the Jays before leaving after facing one batter in the decisive seventh inning. Outside of a home run and single by Bautista, he allowed two walks and a hit batsman in the first six innings.

Kelly, who left his last start Friday with a “minor tweak” in his shoulder, exited in the seventh after giving up a double to Edwin Encarnacion. Ross then dropped a Dioner Navarro pop foul and the Toronto catcher took advantage, hitting a single to put Jays on first and third.

Boston manager John Farrell pulled left-hander Tommy Layne (1-1) in favour of Junichi Tazawa and Valencia greeted the right hander with a three-run shot to left field.

“I missed my location,” Tazawa said through an interpreter.

It was the 20th career homer given up by Tazawa, eight of which have come against Toronto.

Tazawa and manager John Farrell suggested the pitcher may have been tipping his pitches against Toronto in the past.

“I think they picked up something that we felt like we corrected, probably two and a half months ago,” said Farrell. “Tonight was a matter of a ball that ran back to the inner third of the plate against Valencia, rather than staying down and away from him.”

Valencia celebrated the homer with a fist pump as he rounded the bases.

“I was fired up. I was turnt up,” he said, using some modern vernacular for excited.

The Toronto hit parade continued with a Kevin Pillar double and RBI single by Jose Reyes, upping the Toronto lead to 5-2.

Bautista, who snapped an 0-17 slump with a home run Tuesday, went deep again in the first inning with a solo shot to centre field — his 26th homer of the season. Bautista’s shot off the facing of the first outfield deck marked the first time in eight games that Toronto had scored first.

While there were costly errors on both sides, the fans were also treated to some fine fielding from Mike Napoli, Will Middlebrooks and Holt on the Boston side and Reyes, Munenori Kawasaki and Adam Lind for Toronto.

Bautista crashed into the stands down the first-base line trying to chase down a foul ball in the eighth inning but stayed in the game.

Ortiz, given Monday and Tuesday off after being hit by pitches on the elbow and foot on the weekend, returned to his DH role.

___

Follow @NeilMDavidson on 桑拿会所

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24. 09. 2018
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Jolie, Pitt quietly tie the knot in France – National

Jolie, Pitt quietly tie the knot in France – National

TORONTO — Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt are newlyweds.

A spokesperson for the famous couple told The Associated Press on Thursday that Jolie and Pitt tied the knot in France last Saturday.

It is the third marriage for Jolie, 39, and the second for Pitt, 50.

Story continues below HangZhou Night Net

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Jolie was previously married to Elementary star Jonny Lee Miller and to actor Billy Bob Thornton. Pitt was married to Jennifer Aniston from 2000 to 2005.

Jolie and Pitt have six children: Six-year-old twins Vivienne and Knox, 8-year-old Shiloh and adopted children Zahara, 9, Pax, 10, and Maddox, 13.

Details of the nuptials were not immediately made public. According to reports, the non-denominational service took place in front of the children and family members. Jolie’s father, actor Jon Voight, did not attend.

Jolie and Pitt, who announced their engagement in April 2012, arrived in Nice, France on a private jet last Friday. They have been living at Château Miraval in Correns — about 135 km from Nice — since 2008.

Chateau Miraval in France, where the wedding reportedly took place on Aug. 24, 2014.

Michel Gangne / AFP/Getty Images

In 2011, Pitt told talk show host Ellen DeGeneres he wouldn’t get married again until same-sex couples in the U.S. were able to.

“I’ve said that we would not be getting married until everyone in this county had the right to get married,” he said. “We live in this great country that is about freedom. It is defined by our freedom and equality and yet we allow this discrimination to go on everyday and that’s not what we’re about — that’s not what makes us great.

“Until that is reversed, I just don’t get it.”

READ MORE: Angelina Jolie: “I never thought I’d be in love”

Earlier this year, Jolie spoke to People about wedding plans. “We’re just waiting for it to be the right time with the kids, with work, when it feels right. We talk about it occasionally, and the kids talk about it with us,” she said.

“It will be fun. That’s the important thing. When we do it, it will feel like a great day for our family.”

At a photo call Thursday for his new movie Fury, Pitt largely kept his hand in his pocket but photographers managed to get a look at his wedding ring.

Brad Pitt wears a wedding ring during a photo call for his movie ‘Fury’ on Aug. 28, 2014.

Joel Ryan / Invision/AP

Jolie and Pitt fell in love while making 2005’s Mr. & Mrs. Smith — while Pitt was married to Aniston.

The two stars are currently working together on the drama By the Sea in Malta. Jolie, who is directing the film from a script she wrote, will star opposite Pitt.

BELOW: Take a look at Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt with their previous spouses.

Angelina Jolie and Billy Bob Thornton in 2001.

Kevin Winter / Getty Images

Jonny Lee Miller with Angelina Jolie in 2005.

Evan Agostini / Getty Images

Jennifer Aniston with Brad Pitt in 2004.

Kevin Winter / Getty Images

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24. 09. 2018
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Ukraine accuses Russia of sending tanks, armoured vehicles onto its territory – National

Ukraine accuses Russia of sending tanks, armoured vehicles onto its territory – National

WATCH ABOVE: Cars were on fire and gunshots could be heard amid fresh fighting in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk on August 28. 

LATEST UPDATES:

Canadian fighter jets near Russian airspacePoroshenko calls  on Ukraine to resist panicUN Security Council meets for emergency session on Ukraine crisisRussian tanks enter southeastern UkraineUkraine’s President Poroshenko holds council meeting

NOVOAZOVSK, Ukraine – Ukraine accused Russia on Thursday of entering its territory with tanks, artillery and troops, and Western powers said Moscow had “outright lied” about its role and dangerously escalated the conflict.

Russia dismissed the allegations, describing the fighters there as “Russian volunteers.” The Kremlin has repeatedly denied arming and supporting the separatists who have been fighting Ukrainian troops for four months in the gravest crisis between Russia and the West since the end of the Cold War.

NATO said at least 1,000 Russian troops are in Ukraine and later released what it said were satellite photos of Russian self-propelled artillery units moving last week.

NATO caption reads: Russian military units moving in a convoy formation with self-propelled artillery in the area of Krasnodon, Ukraine, well inside territory controlled by Russian separatists. The image was captured on 21 August 2014. There is confidence the equipment is Russian, since Ukrainian units have not yet penetrated this far into separatist controlled territory.

NATO handout

NATO caption reads: “Russian self-propelled artillery units set up in firing positions near Krasnodon, Ukraine. They are supported by logistical vehicles which are likely carrying extra ammunition and supplies. This configuration is exactly how trained military professionals would arrange their assets on the ground, indicating that these are not unskilled amateurs, but Russian soldiers. Russian artillery systems like these have recently shelled Ukrainian positions outside the city of Luhansk in conjunction with a separatist counteroffensive to attempt to break the Ukrainian siege of the city.”

NATO

NATO caption reads: “Military deployment site on the Russian side of the border, near Rostov-on-Don. This location is approximately 31 miles or 50 kilometres from the Dovzhansky, Ukraine border crossing.”

NATO

NATO caption reads: “This photo depicts what are probably six Russian 153mm 2S19 self-propelled guns located in Russia near Kuybyshevo. This site is situated 4 miles, or 6.5 kilometres, south of the Ukraine border, near the village of Chervonyi Zhovten. The guns are pointed north, directly towards Ukrainian territory (see North indicator on image). See image 5 for an overview of where these guns are situated in relation to Ukrainian territory.”

NATO

NATO caption reads: “Wider overview including the position of the self-propelled guns from image 4. Note the North indicator on this image, and remember that the guns are orientated in this location. It is clear that from this location, it would be impossible NOT to fire into Ukrainian territory. This is clearly NOT an exercise; these guns are being used to support separatist forces operating in the territory of Ukraine.”

NATO

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Two columns of tanks and other equipment entered southeastern Ukraine at midday, following heavy shelling of the area from Russia that forced overmatched Ukrainian border guards to flee, said Col. Andriy Lysenko, a spokesman for Ukraine’s national security council.

“Russian forces have entered Ukraine,” President Petro Poroshenko said in Kyiv, cancelling a foreign trip and calling an emergency meeting of his security council.

He urged Ukrainians to remain calm.

“Destabilization of the situation and panic, this is as much of a weapon of the enemy as tanks,” Poroshenko told the council.

U.S. President Barack Obama spoke with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and both leaders agreed Russia must face consequences for its actions.

WATCH: Ukrainian PM confirms Russian troops have crossed into Ukraine

“We agree – if there was ever any doubt – that Russia is responsible for the violence in eastern Ukraine,” Obama said. “The violence is encouraged by Russia. The separatists are trained by Russia, they are armed by Russia, they are funded by Russia.”

He added that Russia “has deliberately and repeatedly violated the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, and the new images of Russian forces inside Ukraine make that plain for the world to see.”

But Obama ruled out a military confrontation between the U.S. and Russia. He said Russia’s activity in Ukraine would incur “more costs and consequences,” though these seemed to be limited to economic pressure that will be discussed when Obama meets with European leaders at a NATO summit in Wales next week.

READ MORE: Government-held town in east Ukraine hit by shelling

At an emergency session of the U.N. Security Council, Western representatives expressed outrage.

“Now we see irrefutable evidence of regular Russian forces operating inside Ukraine,” said British Ambassador Mark Lyall Grant.

U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power said Russia “has manipulated. It has obfuscated. It has outright lied.”

Russian Ambassador Vitaly Churkin offered a spirited defence, saying Kyiv “is waging war against its own people.”

He did not deny the Russian presence, saying “there are Russian volunteers in eastern parts of Ukraine. No one is hiding that.”

But Power countered: “A Russian soldier who chooses to fight in Ukraine on summer break is still a Russian soldier.”

tanks and military vehicles rolled into southeastern Ukraine from Russia on Thursday near the city of Novoazovsk.

(Benjamin Simpson/Global News)

Churkin questioned the presence of Western advisers and asked where Ukrainian troops were getting weapons. He said he wanted to “send a message to Washington: Stop interfering in the internal affairs of sovereign states.”

Russian stock markets fell as Switzerland joined the European Union in imposing restrictions on Russian state banks and fears grew that the U.S. and EU could impose more sanctions on Russian businesses and individuals in response to the military escalation. Russia’s MICEX index dropped nearly 2 per cent on Thursday, and major Russian state banks VTB and Sberbank dropped more than 4 per cent.

The strategic southeastern town of Novoazovsk, which has come under shelling for three days, appeared to be in the control of separatists, creating a new, third front in the war. That raised fears they want to create a land link between Russia and the Crimea Peninsula, which Moscow annexed from Ukraine in March. The town lies along a road connecting the peninsula to Russia.

Lysenko said the missiles from Russia were fired at Ukrainian positions about 11 a.m. About 90 minutes later, two columns, including tanks and other fighting vehicles, began an attack, entering Ukraine from Veselo-Voznesenka and Maximovo in the Rostov region of Russia, he said.

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Presidents of Russia and Ukraine meet for first time since June
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Harper derides Russia’s convoy entering Ukraine
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Ukraine government calling Russian convoy crossing border an invasion
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Russian convoy enters Ukraine

A senior NATO official said the estimate of 1,000 Russian troops in Ukraine was a conservative one, adding that another 20,000 Russian troops were right over the border. The troops who entered Ukraine had sophisticated equipment, he said.

“The hand from behind is becoming more and more overt now,” Brig. Gen. Nico Tak said at NATO’s military headquarters.

Russia’s ultimate aim was to stave off defeat for the separatists and turn eastern Ukraine into a “frozen conflict” that would destabilize the country indefinitely, he said.

Russia’s ambassador to the EU, Vladimir Chizhov, told the BBC that “NATO has never produced a single piece of evidence” of Russian troops operating in Ukraine. He said the only active duty Russian soldiers in Ukraine were the 10 captured this week, who Moscow insists had mistakenly wandered across the border.

IN PHOTOS: Scenes from southeastern Ukraine where Russia tanks have reportedly crossed the border

Ukrainian forces guard a checkpoint in the town of Mariupol, eastern Ukraine, Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)

A Pro-Russian rebel walks in a passage at the local market damaged by shelling in Petrovskiy district in the town of Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Mstislav Chernov)

A Pro-Russian fighter gestures in Troitsko-Khartsyzk, 30 Km east of Donetsk, on August 28, 2014. AFP PHOTO/ FRANCISCO LEONG

A Pro-Russian fighter smokes at a checkpoint in Troitsko-Khartsyzk, 30 Km east of Donetsk, on August 28, 2014. AFP PHOTO/ FRANCISCO LEONG

A villager walks by a unexploded rocket that landed on her backyard in Troitsko-Khartsyzk, 30 Km east of Donetsk, on August 28, 2014. AFP PHOTO/ FRANCISCO LEONG

A Pro-Russian fighter digs a trench in Troitsko-Khartsyzk, 30 Km east of Donetsk, on August 28, 2014. AFP PHOTO/ FRANCISCO LEONG

Speaking in Casteau, Belgium, Tak said that in the past two weeks, “we have noted a significant escalation in both the level and sophistication of Russia’s military interference in Ukraine.”

“Russia is reinforcing and resupplying separatist forces in a blatant attempt to change the momentum of the fighting, which is currently favouring the Ukrainian military,” he added.

NATO also produced satellite images to provide what it called additional evidence that Russian combat soldiers, equipped with sophisticated heavy weaponry, are operating inside Ukraine’s sovereign territory. The grainy images of the terrain near Krasnodon, Ukraine, showed what appeared to be a convoy of military units with artillery, and NATO said it had “confidence the equipment is Russian.”

“This is highly sophisticated weaponry that requires well-trained crews, well-trained command and control elements, and it is extremely unlikely that this sort of equipment is used by volunteers,” Tak said.

WATCH: Protesters gathered outside the Defense Ministry in Kyiv for a second day on August 28, demanding the rescue of Ukrainian forces encircled by pro-Russian separatists in the country’s East. 

He said the satellite images were only “the tip of the iceberg” in terms of the overall scope of Russian troop and weapons movements.

Asked about the NATO images, Russian Defence Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said in a statement to Russian news agencies that “to comment on this seriously just makes no sense.”

Southeastern Ukraine had previously escaped the fighting that has engulfed areas to the north, and the only way rebels could have reached the southeast was by coming through Russia.

If separatists create a land corridor from Russia to Crimea, it could give them or Russia control over the entire Sea of Azov and the gas and mineral riches that energy experts believe it contains. Ukraine already lost roughly half its coastline, several major ports and significant Black Sea mineral rights in Russia’s annexation of Crimea.

In Mariupol, a city of 450,000 people about 30 kilometres (20 miles) west of Novoazovsk, a brigade of Ukrainian forces arrived at the airport Wednesday, while deep trenches were dug a day earlier on the city’s edge.

National guard spokesman Ruslan Muzychuk told Associated Press reporters in the city that the government has evidence large amounts of weapons have been brought into Novoazovsk from Russia.

He added that national guard reinforcements were taking up positions in Mariupol.

“The positions are being strengthened,” the spokesman said. “The road from Novoazovsk to Mariupol is under the control of Ukrainian troops.”

AP journalists on the border have seen the rebels with a wide range of unmarked military equipment – including tanks, Buk missile launchers and armoured personnel carriers – and have encountered many Russians among the rebel fighters.

In Donetsk, the largest rebel-held city, 11 people were killed by shelling overnight, city officials said.

The leader of the insurgency, Alexander Zakharchenko, said in an interview on Russian state TV that up to 4,000 Russians have fought on the separatist side since the armed conflict began in April.

Heintz reported from Kyiv, Ukraine, and Casert reported from Casteau, Belgium. Also contributing were Peter Leonard in Mariupol, Ukraine; Laura Mills and Lynn Berry in Moscow, Bradley Klapper in Washington; and Cara Anna and Trenton Daniel at the United Nations.

©2014The Associated Press

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24. 09. 2018
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Your Manitoba: August – Winnipeg

Your Manitoba: August – Winnipeg

Your Manitoba August 29; Falcon Lake, Man.

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Rob Ford makes gains, Tory still leads and Chow falters: Poll – Toronto

Rob Ford makes gains, Tory still leads and Chow falters: Poll – Toronto

Watch above: How Rob Ford is in second place despite ongoing controversy. Mark Carcasole reports. 

TORONTO – John Tory continues to hold a slight lead in Toronto’s mayoral race while Rob Ford is making gains sitting in second place leaving Olivia Chow in third, according to poll numbers released Thursday.

Story continues below HangZhou Night Net

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The numbers show Tory leads with 34 per cent of voter support, Ford has 31 per cent and Chow is trailing with just 23 per cent. David Soknacki garnered the fewest percentage with 4.

However, the numbers would grow slightly for Tory if the race were only among the top three candidates.

Tory would take well more than a third (36 per cent) and Rob Ford  would garner 31 per cent of votes. Chow would improve to just more than a quarter of the vote (26 per cent).

The numbers come just a week after candidate Karen Stintz bowed out of the race.

Tory suggested voters have a choice between “the chaos and the controversy” of the current mayor or “a new kind of leadership.”

“I like very much the momentum that the campaign has, people forget that I started in third place in the polls, and I think as people focus more on that clear choice between the same old way of doing things which is the chaos and the controversy,” he said.

The poll indicates Tory and Chow’s approval rating has gone down slightly from a previous survey conducted on Aug. 6.

Back then, Tory had a 67 per cent approval rating and Chow with 52 per cent. Now they are at 63 per cent and 49 per cent respectively.

But Chow’s not phased: she said she’s comfortable being the underdog.

“Polls can go up and down but it is very important that we have to make sure that there is investment now so there’s a better future for all of us,” she said Thursday.  I’ve been an underdog before and I’ve won 8 elections and I can’t wait for the real campaign to finally start after Labour Day.”

Rob Ford’s approval rating, meanwhile, has gone up from 35 per cent to 39 per cent and is now higher than it has been since mid-April, despite his repeated controversies and trip to rehab.

The poll suggests one-third of registers voters will vote for Ford in October compared to 28 per cent just two weeks ago.

When it concerns Ford’s resignation, half of Toronto voters now want Ford to resign (50 per cent), down from 58 per cent from two weeks ago.

The telephone poll was conducted between Monday and Tuesday by Forum Research from a sample of 1945 Toronto voters.

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24. 09. 2018
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Conservatives to woo Quebec voters with late-summer campaign

Conservatives to woo Quebec voters with late-summer campaign

MONTREAL – Federal Conservatives are capping off their summer with a pre-electoral push in Quebec, a charm campaign to help the party rebound in what has proven to be challenging terrain.

Denis Lebel, the prime minister’s Quebec lieutenant, is banking on his 12-day “End of Summer Tour” to court a province where the Conservatives hold only five seats and recent polls have suggested they trail the New Democrats, Liberals and Bloc Quebecois in popular support.

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Even though the next election could be more than a year away, Lebel has been shaking hands and delivering speeches across the province on a trek that wraps up Thursday in Quebec City.

“We wanted to be sure that everybody in Quebec understands that Quebec is very important for our government,” Lebel told a crowd of about 100 supporters at a rally this week in Montreal’s Mount Royal riding, a district long coveted by the Conservatives.

“The End of Summer Tour is for us to make political gains. We have worked very hard to make political gains in Quebec, everywhere, in all regions.”

He told the audience that the drive started months before he kicked off his tour, with 12 cabinet ministers from outside the province paying visits to Quebec since April.

Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander as well as Lynne Yelich, junior minister responsible for consular affairs, accompanied Lebel at the Mount Royal event.

A Leger poll taken in June found the Conservatives had the support of only 12 per cent of Quebecers, compared with 34 per cent for both the NDP and Liberals and 17 per cent for the Bloc.

Polls conducted more recently suggest the Liberals have gained ground in regions like Ontario and the Maritimes at the expense of the Tories, which could make additional wins in Quebec even more important.

“If the Tories lose seats elsewhere, they’re going to have to find places to make those up,” said David Coletto, chief executive officer of research company Abacus Data.

“I think in their mind if they can regain five seats in Quebec … that probably can at least offset what will likely be some losses in Atlantic Canada and other parts of the country.”

But Coletto said the Tories’ growth potential in Quebec appears limited, particularly since recent surveys have found its support has hovered between 12 and 20 per cent – similar to its level after the 2011 election.

Even the turmoil within the Bloc, now reduced to two MPs, could hurt the Conservatives’ chances of a turnaround, he added.

Recent data from his firm has suggested that only 11 per cent of Bloc voters have a positive view of Harper, 50 per cent have a favourable view of NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair and 27 per cent hold a positive view of Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau.

In 2011, the Conservatives lost six of the 11 ridings they held in Quebec following a surge in popularity of the NDP and then-leader Jack Layton. Harper cabinet ministers Lawrence Cannon, Jean-Pierre Blackburn and Josee Verner were all defeated.

The Quebec City region, where the Conservatives lost three seats in 2011, would likely be a focal point of any Tory revival in the province.

To help replenish Tory coffers, a party source says the Conservatives are organizing a $500-per-person fundraising dinner in Quebec City on Sept. 8.

Lebel and Alexander both expressed confidence their party will bounce back.

Following the Mount Royal rally, Alexander predicted to reporters that the Conservatives would add new cabinet ministers in Quebec after the 2015 election. When asked how many, he directed the question to Lebel, who replied: “As many as possible, for sure.”

The Tories will once again target Mount Royal as a potential beachhead in Montreal, where the party hasn’t won a seat in a quarter-century.

In 2011, Tory candidate Saulie Zajdel finished about 2,300 votes behind popular Liberal incumbent Irwin Cotler in the riding previously held by Pierre Elliott Trudeau.

Cotler has announced he will not seek re-election in the district, which is home to a large Jewish population.

In his speech, Lebel told the Mount Royal crowd that Harper’s foreign policy has helped Canada become Israel’s “best friend.”

“Obviously, our government is taking a strong stance on the right of Israel, not only to exist but also to defend its citizens,” Lebel said, drawing a big applause.

“As you know, Mount Royal is a riding we are determined to win – we came pretty close … But this time we will have to seal the deal.”

The Conservatives will run another candidate there in the next election.

Zajdel was arrested last year as part of Quebec’s anti-corruption crackdown. He was charged with alleged crimes police say took place between 2007 and 2008 when he was a municipal councillor.

Robert Libman, a prominent figure in the area who’s served as a local mayor and a provincial politician, has said he’s decided to seek the nomination in large part due to Harper’s Middle East approach and his economic policy.

“I think our riding is ready to make the switch after voting Liberal since 1940,” said Libman, who, as a member of the Equality party, won a provincial riding in the area that had long been a rock-solid Liberal seat.

“As I proved in 1989, if you work hard enough, and if the circumstances are working in a certain way around certain issues, you can turn the tide.”

Lebel’s cross-Quebec tour has taken him to a poutine festival, a lunch event at a Royal Canadian Legion and a riding where a Conservative incumbent lost a nail-biter in 2011.

Bernard Genereux thought he had retained his seat in Montmagny-L’Islet-Kamouraska-Riviere-du-Loup, but a recount revealed he had lost to the NDP’s Francois Lapointe – by nine votes.

Genereux, who’s seeking the nomination once again, said several cabinet ministers from outside Quebec have also visited the area in recent months.

“There’s nothing exceptional about what’s happening right now,” said Genereux, who thinks recent attention paid by the Tories was similar in the lead-up to 2011.

“It’s important to be visible in politics.”

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24. 09. 2018
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Flight MH370: Phone call offers new clue in search for missing plane – National

Flight MH370: Phone call offers new clue in search for missing plane – National

CANBERRA, Australia – Just weeks before the hunt for the missing Malaysian airliner is set to resume, an Australian official said Thursday that the sprawling search area in the southern Indian Ocean may be extended farther south based on a new analysis of a failed attempt to call the plane by satellite phone.

Story continues below HangZhou Night Net

Australian Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss said the analysis of the call, attempted by Malaysia Airlines officials on the ground soon after Flight 370 disappeared from radar, “suggests to us that the aircraft might have turned south a little earlier than we had previously expected.”

The Boeing 777 disappeared after veering off its northerly course from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, and has become one of aviation history’s most stunning mysteries. It is thought to have crashed 1,800 kilometres (1,100 miles) off Australia’s west coast, but no trace of the plane or the 239 people aboard has been found.

READ MORE: Malaysia Airlines set for shakeup after disasters

The overall search area remains unchanged, Truss said. However, Australian Transport Safety Bureau chief commissioner Martin Dolan said he would meet with international experts next week to decide whether the 60,000-square kilometre (23,000-square mile) targeted search area should be extended or shifted south based on the new analysis.

“We think we may extend that area farther south; that’s the thing we’re currently considering,” Dolan told The Associated Press.

The new analysis applies to satellite data from the first of two satellite phone calls Malaysia Airlines ground staff attempted to make to Flight 370’s crew.

Investigators have long been aware of the phone calls, but it has taken until recently for them to develop methods to analyze the phone data to glean clues about the plane’s direction. It was through a similar analysis of satellite data from the plane’s jet engine transmitter that investigators were able to define the current search area.

By the time the calls were attempted, the plane had become invisible to civilian radar. It had flown west without communications past Sumatra and beyond the range of Malaysian military radar.

Dolan said the new analysis suggested the jet was already flying south when the first phone call was attempted, less than 20 minutes after the plane dropped off military radar.

“Previously, there was the possibility that it could have been quite a bit later, so we had to do our modeling based on a range of possibilities as to where the aircraft turned,” Dolan said.

“We’re now more confident that it turned comparatively early. That does make a difference to how we prioritize the search along the seventh arc,” he added, referring to the broad area where investigators believe the flight ran out of fuel and crashed, based on the last ping from the jet engine transmitter.

READ MORE: Flight MH370 search shifts to remote stretch of Indian Ocean

Investigators are attempting to calculate which parts of the search area should be examined first. The analysis adds weight to an Australian Transport Safety Bureau crash investigation report in June in which most of the modeling of the plane’s potential flight paths factored in a relatively early switch to a southerly course.

The current search area covers a swath of ocean 700 kilometres (435 miles) long and 80 kilometres (50 miles) wide. An initial search of 850 square kilometres (330 square miles) of seabed to the north ended with officials concluding that they were focusing their efforts in the wrong place.

Truss and Malaysian Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai signed an agreement Thursday in Canberra on sharing the ongoing costs between the two countries as the search progresses to the expensive next phase, which could take up to a year and cost 52 million Australian dollars ($48 million).

Until now, each country involved in the search has been bearing its own costs.

In three weeks, Dutch contractor Fugro Survey Pty. Ltd. will begin the operation with three vessels towing underwater vehicles equipped with side-scan sonar, multi-beam echo sounders and video equipment, Truss said.

Liow said investigators had advised that success in the undersea search for wreckage and the aircraft’s black boxes with cockpit voice recordings and flight data is crucial to solving the mystery of the disaster.

“The investigation cannot continue without the search result,” Liow said.

“We need to find the plane, we need to find the black box in the plane so that we can have a conclusion in the investigation,” he added.

Malaysia, as the country where the Boeing 777 was flagged, has overall responsibility for the crash investigation. But Australia has search and rescue responsibility.

Chinese Vice Minister of Transport He Jianzhong, who also attended the Canberra meeting, said the ministers agreed that the search will not be interrupted or given up. Most of the passengers – 153 – were Chinese.

©2014The Associated Press

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24. 09. 2018
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Two women face charges after Sunwing flight diverted back to Toronto

Two women face charges after Sunwing flight diverted back to Toronto

TORONTO – Two female passengers are facing multiple charges after a Sunwing Airlines flight to Cuba was escorted back to Toronto Pearson International Airport by two CF-18 fighter jets Wednesday night.

Peel Regional Police arrested 25-year-old Lilia Ratmanski from Whitby and 26-year-old Milana Muzikante from Vaughan when Sunwing Flight 656 diverted back to Toronto following a disruption on board.

In an email to Global News, a Sunwing spokesperson said the two passengers had allegedly “consumed a significant quantity of their duty-free alcohol purchase in the lavatory and lit a cigarette.”

The spokesperson also said the two allegedly triggered the smoke alarm, got into a physical altercation with each other, and made a “non-credible” threat against the plane.

Concerned over their actions, the pilot decided to return to Toronto mid-flight.

VIDEO: What caused the Sunwing flight to divert back to Toronto?

NORAD scrambled two fighter jets from Quebec to escort the plane back to Pearson. Dan Blouin, a spokesperson for the Department of National Defence, suggested the estimated cost of flying one CF-18 for an hour to be $16,750 but admitted the exact amount could vary.

Major Julie Roberge, a spokeswoman for NORAD based in Colorado Springs, Colo., said the CF-18s met the aircraft at the Canadian border and did not venture into American airspace.

A statement from Sunwing said the pilots followed the “appropriate procedure” by turning back to Toronto.

Ken Pole, a contributing editor to Skies Magazine, agreed.

“What else could they have done? Not much else. They played by the rules. These women, from what I understand, got into their duty-free liquor before they got very far,” Pole said.

He suggested airlines have several options when unruly passengers disrupt a flight: they can turn back, try to intervene themselves or land at an American airport.

The second option, he said, frequently leads to legal trouble for the airline and its unlikely the plane would have been allowed to land at an American airport.

As a “goodwill gesture,” Sunwing is giving inconvenienced passengers a $15 meal voucher at Pearson Airport and a $75 voucher for future travel.

“We are very apologetic for the inconvenience experienced by our customers and thankful to our flight crew for their efforts to safely manage the situation,” said the statement from the company’s VP of marketing Janine Chapman.

Sunwing officials say the flight took off for a second time around 11 p.m. Wednesday with a new crew.

Both female passengers have been charged with smoking on board an aircraft, endangering safety of an aircraft , mischief endangering safety, and uttering threats.

-With a file from The Canadian Press

HangZhou Night Net

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24. 09. 2018
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Israelis skeptical of PM Netanyahu’s claim of victory in Gaza war: Poll – National

Israelis skeptical of PM Netanyahu’s claim of victory in Gaza war: Poll – National

JERUSALEM – A new poll has shown that a majority of Israelis are skeptical of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s claim that Israel achieved a “great military and political” victory over Hamas in the latest round of fighting in the Gaza Strip.

The poll, published in Thursday’s Haaretz newspaper, shows that 54 per cent of those surveyed believe there was no clear winner the 50 days of war. The fighting killed more than 2,100 Palestinians and 69 Israelis.

The poll questioned 464 Israelis on Wednesday and had a margin of error of 4.6 per cent. Later that night, Netanyahu said in a televised speech that Israel dealt Hamas “a heavy blow.”

Calm has prevailed since the two sides agreed this week to an open-ended truce, settling for an ambiguous interim agreement in exchange.

HangZhou Night Net

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24. 09. 2018
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Ban on pruning elm trees in Saskatchewan ends Sept. 1 – Saskatoon

Ban on pruning elm trees in Saskatchewan ends Sept. 1 – Saskatoon

SASKATOON – The pruning ban in Saskatchewan ends at the end of the month, so get ready to keep elm trees free of Dutch elm disease (DED).

Every year, pruning of elm trees is prohibited from April 1 to Aug. 31 to reduce the risk of DED.  During this time, the elm bark beetles that spread the disease are most active and fresh cuts attract the insects.

Elm beetles can carry a fungus that clogs the tree’s water conducting system, which eventually kills the tree.

Story continues below HangZhou Night Net

Related

  • Dutch elm disease held at bay in Sask.

  • Stop dutch elm disease – don’t prune

DED was first discovered in Saskatchewan in 1981 and continues to be found in more areas of the province.

It currently affects the southeast portion of the province spanning from Cumberland House to Tisdale to Moose Jaw and east of Estevan. The Saskatchewan forestry industry is not affected.

According to the City of Saskatoon, there is no DED present at this time in the city.

The most effective management strategy is to deprive the elm beetle it of breeding habitat. This involves removing tree waste and detached elm wood.

Starting Sept. 1, homeowners are encouraged to start pruning their American and Siberian elms.

Regular pruning, outside the ban period, helps trees resist disease, including DED.

Due to the risk of spreading DED, transporting or storing elm firewood is illegal. The Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment says there were no infractions in 2013 but a couple dozen warnings were issued and complied with.

Elm removal can occur outside the ban; however, the entire tree and stump must be removed by a trained individual with a permit.

The ministry’s insect and disease program specialist Jeff Gooliaff says civilians should get training or seek a certified arborist.

All elm wood should be disposed of by burning or burying it in a location approved by the local municipality.

In Saskatoon, the landfill is the only site approved for elm tree disposal.

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