June 13th, 2024

In the news today: Israel strikes outskirts of Gaza City during second ground raid

By The Canadian Press on October 27, 2023.

Palestinians look for survivors after an Israeli airstrike in Rafah, Gaza Strip, Thursday, Oct. 26, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Hatem Ali

Here is a roundup of stories from The Canadian Press designed to bring you up to speed on what you need to know today “¦

Israel strikes outskirts of Gaza City during second ground raid in as many days

Israeli forces conducted another ground raid in Gaza in advance of an expected invasion of the Hamas-ruled territory.

U.S. warplanes, meanwhile, struck targets in eastern Syria after attacks on U.S. forces by Iran-backed fighters, adding to regional tensions fuelled by the three-week-old Gaza war.

The Palestinian death toll passed 7,000 as Israel launched waves of airstrikes in response to the bloody Hamas rampage in southern Israel on Oct. 7.

More than 1,400 people in Israel have been killed, mostly civilians slain during the initial Hamas attack.

In addition, 229 people including foreigners, children and older adults were believed taken by Hamas during the incursion and remain in captivity in Gaza.

Four hostages were released earlier.

Here’s what else we’re watching “¦

Focus on police emails in convoy trial continues

The lawyers for two “Freedom Convoy” organizers are expected to continue their legal fight for access to internal Ottawa Police Service documents today.

Tamara Lich and Chris Barber are on trial for their role in the massive demonstration against COVID-19 public-health measures that gridlocked the streets of Ottawa for three weeks in early 2022.

Defence lawyers want to see emails that show what evidence police officers were asked to hand over as part of the case against their clients, as well as any instructions given to officers about updating the software on their cellphones when the protest ended.

The defence had only received heavily redacted emails in response, which the Crown and Ottawa police say omit irrelevant information or information protected by solicitor-client privilege.

The Crown, defence lawyers and lawyers for Ottawa police presented their legal arguments all day on Thursday.

More testimony expected at Nygard trial

Former fashion mogul Peter Nygard is expected to continue testifying today at his sexual assault trial in Toronto.

Nygard, the founder of a now-defunct international women’s clothing company, is accused of using his position in the fashion industry to lure women and girls.

The 82-year-old has pleaded not guilty to five counts of sexual assault and one count of forcible confinement in alleged incidents ranging from the 1980s to mid-2000s.

Multiple complainants in the trial have alleged they were taken to Nygard’s Toronto headquarters under pretences ranging from tours to job interviews, with encounters ending in a top-floor bedroom suite where they allege they were sexually assaulted.

Saskatchewan won’t fund supervised consumption

A harm reduction researcher says the Saskatchewan government’s plan to not fund supervised consumption sites isn’t based in evidence.

Barb Fornssler, a professor at the University of Saskatchewan, says supervised consumption services are part of harm reduction strategies that can prevent people from dying or contracting viruses, like HIV.

She says her research shows people who aren’t criminalized for substance use and have food and a safe place to sleep are more able to engage in treatment.

In the government’s throne speech this week, the province said it won’t allow illegal drugs to be supplied through hospitals or public clinics.

Minister of Mental Health and Addictions Tim McLeod also says supervised consumption services don’t solve addictions, and those who use illegal drugs are not on a path to recovery.

Ranchers brace for winter; feed in short supply

Drought-affected Canadian ranchers are facing yet another difficult winter when it comes to feeding their livestock.

In parts of southern Alberta and southwest Saskatchewan, five summers of back-to-back droughts have taken a toll on hay crops and native grasses, leaving many ranchers struggling to secure enough food to get their cattle through the winter.

Industry group Alberta Beef Producers says many of its members have already had to downsize their herds, sending cattle they can’t afford to feed to slaughter.

Last week, the federal and Alberta governments announced $165-million in drought relief funding for the industry this year, but ranchers say longer-term solutions are needed.

Farm Credit Canada says dwindling cattle numbers and continued strong consumer demand for beef will also mean higher prices for consumers.

Canadians split on handing out Halloween candy

A new poll suggests Canadians are roughly split down the middle when it comes to handing out Halloween candy this year.

Forty-eight per cent of the 1,521 adults who completed the online Leger survey said they would be handing out candy, while 46 per cent said they would opt out and six per cent were undecided.

For those with kids in their household, the proportion of those dishing out treats jumps to 63 per cent.

The poll from Leger and The Canadian Press, which was conducted between Oct. 20 and 22, also indicates 71 per cent of Canadians expect to spend about the same amount of money on Halloween this year as last.

Roughly 15 per cent of respondents said they were cutting back on spending, while 11 per cent said they were throwing more cash at the holiday.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 27, 2023

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