World stock markets steady following terror attacks; impact ‘limited’

Written by admin on 14/11/2018 Categories: 长沙夜网

TORONTO – North American markets rose Monday morning, following on a mixed day for European and Asian shares amid worries about the possible economic effects of the attacks in Paris last week.

In Toronto, the S&P/TSX composite index gained 23.23 points to reach 13,098.65, helped by strength in the gold and health care sectors. In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 13.37 points at 17,231.87, while the broader S&P 500 index gained 0.21 of a point at 2,023.25.

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Shares were holding up better than many expected in the wake of the terrorist attacks that killed and wounded hundreds in France’s capital.

In Europe, Germany’s DAX edged up 0.4 per cent, while France’s CAC-40 was little changed. Britain’s FTSE 100 rose 0.5 per cent. In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell nearly 1 per cent, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 lost nearly 1 per cent. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 1.7 per cent.

“Immediate market reaction to the Paris outrages has been limited in European markets,” Howard Archer, chief European and UK economist at IHS Global Insight, said, suggesting the impact of the Paris attacks would be of a similar magnitude to terror attacks on London and in Madrid a decade ago.

“Experience from the London subway and bus bombings in 2005 as well as the Madrid train bombings in 2004 suggest that the economic impact should be limited and temporary,” Archer said.

On the commodity markets, the December gold contract gained US$4.30 at US$1,085.20, while the December crude oil contract slipped 15 cents to US$40.59.

The Canadian dollar was down 0.16 of a cent to 74.93 cents U.S.

—; With files from The Associated Press, Global News

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Transplant gives new face, scalp to burned firefighter

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NEW YORK – A volunteer firefighter badly burned in a 2001 blaze has received the most extensive face transplant ever, covering his skull and much of his neck, a New York hospital announced Monday.

The surgery took place in August at the NYU Langone Medical Center. The patient, 41-year-old Patrick Hardison, is still undergoing physical therapy at the hospital but plans to return home to Senatobia, Mississippi, in time for Thanksgiving.

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The surgery has paved the way for him to regain normal vision, and in an interview last week he said that will let him accomplish a major goal:

“I’ll start driving again.”

More than two dozen face transplants have been performed worldwide since the first one in France in 2005. Dr. Eduardo Rodriguez, who led the surgical team that did Hardison’s transplant and recently wrote a review of the field, said Hardison’s is by far the most extensive performed successfully in terms of the amount of tissue transferred.

The transplant extends from the top of the head, over Hardison’s skull and down to the collarbones in front; in back, it reaches far enough down that only a tiny patch of Hardison’s original hair remains — its colour matched by the dark blond hair growing on his new scalp. The transplant includes both ears.

It’s “a historic achievement,” said Dr. Amir Dorafshar, co-director of the face transplant program at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, who was not involved in the operation. “This type of treatment option will potentially revolutionize the care of patients with severe facial burn injuries.”

The surgery began Aug. 14 and lasted 26 hours. It left no scars on Hardison’s new face because the seam of the transplanted tissue runs down the back of his skull.

The donor was 26-year-old New York artist and competitive bicyclist David P. Rodebaugh. He had died of injuries from a biking accident on a Brooklyn street.

Hardison was burned Sept. 5, 2001, in Senatobia in northwestern Mississippi. A 27-year-old father of three at the time who’d served for seven years as a volunteer firefighter, he entered a burning house to search for a woman. The roof collapsed, giving him third-degree burns on his head, neck and upper torso.

He spent about two months at a Memphis, Tennessee, burn centre. Doctors used a layer of skin from his legs to cover his wounded head, but he had lost his ears, lips, most of his nose and virtually all of his eyelid tissue.

Since he could not blink, doctors used skin grafts to reinforce what remained of his eyelids and sewed them nearly shut to protect his eyes. That left him with only pinhole vision.

“I was almost totally blind,” he recalled. “I could see just a little bit.”

His face was “one huge scar,” Rodriguez said. Hardison still went to baseball games and did other things outside, although people stared. He playfully told curious children that he had fought a bear. Still, he said, life was hard. He endured 71 surgeries.

Eventually a church friend of his wrote to Rodriguez, who had performed a 2012 face transplant at the University of Maryland Medical Center. The doctor said he would try to help, and in August 2014 Hardison was placed on a waiting list.

“We were looking for the ideal donor,” one who matched Hardison on biological traits to minimize the risk of his body’s rejecting the new tissue, as well as things like skin and hair colour, said Rodriguez, who by then had moved to NYU Langone.

A year later, Rodebaugh was identified as a potential donor by LiveOnNY, the non-profit organization that seeks transplant organs and tissue in the New York City area. A native of the Columbus, Ohio, area, he had signed up to donate organs. His mother gave permission to use his face, noting that Rodebaugh had always wanted to be a firefighter, said LiveOnNY president Helen Irving.

The hospital paid for the transplant operation, which included attaching four bone segments to Hardison’s skull, as anchors to prevent the face from drooping.

Now, three months later, the lower part of his face remains swollen, but Rodriguez said that will go away in a few months. With his new eyelids and more surgery, he’s expected to regain a normal field of vision for the first time in more than a decade. He will have to continuing taking medications to prevent his body from rejecting the transplant.

Eventually, “a casual observer will not notice anything that is odd” in Hardison’s new face, which will blend features of his original face and the donor’s, Rodriguez said.

Hardison said his new face has already made a difference when he goes outside.

“I used to get stared at all the time, but now I’m just an average guy,” he said.

He’s been told he can’t return to firefighting because of insurance concerns, but he has another plan: motivational speaking or something similar, perhaps for wounded veterans.

His message? “Just how there is hope.”

©2015

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Anonymous declares war on Islamic State after Paris attacks

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The hacker collective Anonymous declared war against the Islamic State group Saturday after a series of brutal attacks in Paris on Friday night killed 129 people and injured hundreds more.

In a video posted to YouTube on Nov. 14 a man wearing a Guy Fawkes mask said the group would hunt down the Islamic State militants who claimed responsibility for the Paris attacks.

WATCH: Minute of silence held at Sorbonne, crowd breaks into another chorus of French national anthem

“Expect massive cyberattacks. War is declared. Get prepared,” says the masked man in French.

“Anonymous from all over the world will hunt you down. You should know that we will find you and we will not let you go. We will launch the biggest operation ever against you.”

“We don’t forgive and we don’t forget.”

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READ MORE: Who is Abdelhamid Abaaoud? Belgian jihadi ID’d as mastermind of Paris attacks

Anonymous is an international network of activist computer hackers which has claimed responsibility for many cyberattacks, including others on ISIS and the Ku Klux Klan (KKK). Following the January attacks against the offices of the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo in Paris they attacked websites related to Islamic State and took down thousands of ISIS twitter accounts.

WATCH: Mohamad Abdeslam, one of the brothers of a dead suicide bomber in the Paris attacks, said on Monday neither he or his family could have imagined that they were involved with the attacks in Paris on Friday evening.

The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for a series of coordinated attacks in Paris where police say attackers worked in three synchronized teams, wearing matching suicide vests and carrying the same weapons laid siege on a stadium, a concert hall and Paris cafes leaving 129 people dead and over 350 wounded, 99 of them seriously.

©2015

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Should Canada stop bringing in Syrian refugees because of the Paris attacks? Experts say no.

Written by admin on 15/10/2019 Categories: 长沙夜网

Nearly 30,000 people (and counting) have put their names to an online petition demanding the Canadian government put the brakes on its plan to bring 25,000 Syrian refugees to Canada by the end of this year.

It comes in the wake of the attacks in Paris Friday and reports one of the attackers may have posed as a refugee to get into Europe.

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    We will deliver on commitment to bring 25 thousand refugees to Canada :Brison

“The hustle to bring a large number of Syrian people in a short period of time has potential to overlook terrorists. We can not (sic) afford to import terrorists to Canada. Not even a single one,” the petition reads.

READ MORE: Paris attacks: French President calls for 3-month extension of state of emergency

Adding fuel to the fire, some politicians in Canada and the U.S. agree.

Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall calling on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to “suspend” his Syrian refugee plan, saying the government being driven by dates and numbers “may affect the safety of our citizens and the security of our country.”

And, the governors of at least 16 states are now saying they won’t accept Syrian refugees.

But, University of Ottawa law professor Errol Mendes warns “fear mongering” with security concerns about Syrian refugees plays right into the hands of ISIS. Halting the resettlement of refugees might actually aid the terror group.

“They want to stop the refugee process because one of their main sources of income in the ISIS-controlled territory is taxation of the people there, extortion of the people there,” Mendes told Global News on Sunday.

Some argue the threat of refugees importing terror may not be as great as the threat of leaving people displaced by war and terrorism to remain vulnerable in refugee camps.

WATCH: The war in Syria: Who’s involved and why

“Experience from many conflict zones teaches us that the longer these refugees are left to languish in despair in camps the more prone they become to radicalization,” wrote Anne Speckhard, an expert on radicalization and extremism at University of Georgetown, wrote in the New York Times in September. “Just as gangs attract youth in inner cities, terrorists are adroit at exploiting the most vulnerable who might turn to them for security, justice and even hope.”

One only has to look at the refugee camps in Pakistan, where the Taliban exploited the vulnerable situations in refugee camps and recruited disadvantaged and disenfranchised young men.

READ MORE: What about Beirut? As world grieves for Paris, Mideast victims of ISIS feel ignored

But the Syrian refugees who will be prioritized for resettlement in Canada are likely to be female-headed households, unaccompanied minors and people who are medically vulnerable, explained James Milner, Carleton University political science professor who previously worked with the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR).

The Liberals have not yet released specific details of how Syrian refugees will be selected for resettlement in Canada, but Milner told Global News the 25,000 Syrian refugees likely to be resettled in Canada aren’t “your prime recruits for a global jihadi movement.”

“The saying goes in the refugee community that if you were a potential terrorist looking to gain access to Canada, about the last way that you’d want to come in is as a resettled refugee.”

Refugees, in many cases, are the ones who are the ones fleeing terrorism.

The overwhelming majority of terror attacks in 2013 were in the countries where many refugees are fleeing from.

That includes Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nigeria, Syria and Somalia; those countries accounted for 84.3 per cent of all terror attacks worldwide.

But this is data prior to the rise of ISIS and its recent foray into attacks on targets beyond the borders of the areas of its self-declared caliphate. The attacks in the past three weeks – the suspected bombing of a Russian airliner over Egypt’s Sinai peninsula by an ISIS affiliate, the suicide bombings in Lebanon’s capital on Thursday and Friday’s attacks in Paris — have killed approximately 400 people.

And while this seems to signal new tactics for the extremist group, past statistics show few refugees are the perpetrators of domestic terrorism.

“Of the 745,000 refugees resettled since September 11th, only two Iraqis in Kentucky have been arrested on terrorist charges, for aiding al-Qaeda in Iraq,” reads an Oct. 17 article in the Economist.

In Canada, there have been cases of refugees or refugee claimants being charged or accused of terror-related activity, including Raed Jaser, who was convicted of plotting to blow up a Via Rail train; his Palestinian family was accepted as refugees and went on to become Canadian citizens, but Jaser’s two refugee claims were denied.

More than 263,000 refugees arrived in Canada between 2005 and 2014, but neither of the two terror-related attacks on Canadian soil last year were carried out by either refugees or immigrants; the attacks in St. Jean-sur-Richelieu and on Parliament Hill were both carried out by Canadian-born young men.

READ MORE: U.S. military to boost intelligence sharing with France

Milner suggested it’s “a very emotional response to a very significant event” to want to stop refugee resettlement in the wake of the attacks in Paris, but he said there’s nothing that raises additional concerns about security because there are checks in place.

The refugees that Canada plans to resettle aren’t those making the treacherous journey across the Mediterranean and Aegean seas in rickety boats, in hopes of finding new life in Europe; They’re likely to come from UN camps in Lebanon and Jordan, which have taken in more than 1.7 million Syrians.

UNHCR says it has anti-fraud measures in place in its refugee registration system, including biometric security tools like iris scanning.

Asylum-Seekers from Syria in Canada by Month | FindTheData

Follow @nick_logan

©2015

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Refugees need to be screened, but we need to open our doors soon: B.C. premier

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Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall is calling on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to “suspend” his Syrian refugee plan, saying the government being driven by dates and numbers “may affect the safety of our citizens and the security of our country.”

Governors in more than 20 U.S. states are now saying they will not accept any Syrian refugees.

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But B.C. premier Christy Clark does not share that same sentiment. She says that while every refugee has to be “properly screened,” British Columbians and Canadians should “open [their] doors” to refugees as soon as they can.

“Here’s the thing. Security for Canadians has to come first,” Clark told reporters today. “We have to make sure Canadians, British Columbians, are safe and secure. That’s the job of the federal government. They have those processes in place, and so, what I would say is, they need to make sure that their processes are working, that those security checks are being done properly.”

Clark said that is when the government can invite refugees to come to Canada, although she is not sure about the 25,000 Syrian refugees likely to be resettled in Canada. “I don’t know whether or not that number’s the right one, I just know that Canadians want to know that the security processes are working well,” she said.

About 2,700 refugees are expected in B.C. before the end of the year.

“But having said that though, I understand the urgency that people are feeling about inviting these people who are from one of the worst, war-torn countries, regions in the world who are facing the kind of violence every day that unfolded in Paris over the weekend,” added Clark.

“As Canadians, as compassionate people, who have prosperity to share, we want to make sure that we open our doors to give them somewhere safe to live as soon as we can.”

People who are fleeing their country due to war or terrorism have to go through a rigorous screening process before they can be considered as potential refugees in another country.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) says it is primarily the responsibility of the hosting country to screen everyone properly and separate “out combatants and those involved in activities incompatible with the civilian character of asylum, from refugees.”

“Further to this, UNHCR does also seek to identify such people at registration stage as well as subsequent protection interviews, and questions about past or current military activities, affiliations, or other relevant issues, including future plans are part of UNHCR’s registration, assessment, refugees status determination and resettlement activities.”

We also have a number of biometric security and anti-fraud measures built into registration systems in operations, such as iris scanning.”

The UNHCR has laid out the common processing stages in a flow chart (see below):

In Canada, refugee resettlement eligibility criteria will only consider an applicant for resettlement as a convention refugee (someone who is unwilling to return to their home country because of a well-founded fear of persecution based on: race; religion; political opinion; nationality) under certain conditions:

They are referred by UNHCR, another designated referral organization or a private sponsorThe applicant must meet the criteria of the 1951 UN Convention or meet the criteria of the Humanitarian-protected Persons Abroad Class (HPC)The applicant must have no reasonable prospect, within a reasonable period, of a durable solution in a country other than CanadaNormally, applicants must show potential to become self-sufficient and successfully establish in Canada within a three to five year time frame. Factors such as education, presence of a support network (family or sponsor) in Canada, work experience and qualifications, ability to learn to speak English or French and other personal suitability factors such as resourcefulness will be taken into account by visa officers. However, these criteria do not apply to refugees determined by a visa officer to fall within the categories “urgent need of protection” or “vulnerable”Applicants must pass a medical examination, but refugees are not refused on grounds of medical inadmissibility due to excessive demand on Canada’s healthcare systemApplicants must also undergo criminal screening and Canada will not accept any person who participated in· criminal activity, criminal organizations, or violation of human or international rightsEither upon request of the foreign national or on the Minister’s own initiative, the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act gives the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration the authority to apply judgment and flexibility in cases that do not meet the requirements of the Act, but which are justified by humanitarian and compassionate considerations or public policy

Peter Showler, a former chairperson of the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, said the images being shown of refugees crossing European borders is different than what will happen in Canada. “This chaotic flow of refugees into the country is drastically different then the security screens that are in place for Canada’s resettlement process,” he said.

“These are people who have been in refugee camps for three or four years, a lot is known about them. They were the first to flee the Syrian conflict.”

Showler said admitting refugees to Canada can be a fairly quick process, maybe taking between six and 12 weeks.

Clark is getting ready to welcome the refugees to B.C.

“We want to make sure that refugees that are settling in British Columbia are settling around the breadth of British Columbia if we can,” she said. “Because housing affordability is tough, as we know, in the Lower Mainland, and there’s an abundance of jobs in some regions of the province where they are begging for people to come. So we want to make sure the refugees that we welcome in British Columbia have the best chance of success possible. And for some of them, that will mean settling outside the Lower Mainland.”

©2015

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Sackville N.B. group says Paris attacks have not changed plans to sponsor Syrian refugee family

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SACKVILLE, N.B. – The spokesman for the Sackville Refugee Response Coalition says the Paris terrorist attacks haven’t changed his group’s plans to bring a Syrian refugee family to New Brunswick.

Rev. John Perkin says they are people who need our help.

“This is one very tangible way where people can get involved and exercise their warm hearts and willing hands to be a very warm and welcoming community,” he said.

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“Refugees are people trying to get away from horrible life circumstances.”

The group includes members from Mount Allison University, local churches, individuals and service organizations. Members wants to raise $30,000 to sponsor a family in Sackville for a year.

Reports say one of the Paris attackers had a Syrian passport. Although the passport has been raising questions about Syrian refugees, a Mount Allison University political science professor says Canadians should not be worried.

James Devine says terrorist organizations would have a difficult time entering the country by posing as refugees.

“There’s over four million refugees outside of Syria right now and the odds of an ISIL (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) agent being able to move through that and get picked up by the U.N. (United Nations) and brought to the west is very, very low,” he said, noting not helping them could create more serious problems.

“What we’re doing is putting people in a very desperate situation and putting them in a situation where they’re more likely to be radicalised and recruited by groups like ISIL,” he said.

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ISIS releases video showing aftermath of alleged airstrike on its capital

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A video released by a media arm of the Islamic State group (ISIS) purportedly showed the aftermath of a Russian airstrike on Raqqa, the de-facto capital of the extremist group.

The video, released by the pro-Islamic State Aamaq News Agency, claims to show bodies of victims being carried out of burning buildings after an attack on Saturday.

Activists say dozens of civilians have been killed in the Russian air campaign in Syria, which Moscow says is aimed at crushing the Islamic State group and other Islamic militants.

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  • ‘We are all in the same boat’ says French-born Muslim after two sisters gunned down by ISIS attack

READ MORE: ‘We are all in the same boat’ says French-born Muslim after two sisters gunned down by ISIS attack

But the month-old Russian bombardment has killed more civilians than it has ISIS militants, according to the main activist group tracking the conflict, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

The Observatory said it has so far confirmed 185 civilians killed in Russian strikes the past month – including 46 women and 48 children – while the toll among IS fighters was 131.

The heaviest toll came among Syrian rebels not connected to ISIS, with 279 dead, the group said.

WATCH: The war in Syria: Who’s involved and why

The Russians have flatly dismissed all claims of civilian casualties or damage, saying they use various intelligence sources to plan each strike to make sure there is no collateral damage.

©2015The Associated Press

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U.S. senator says SaskPower carbon capture a ‘failed project’

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REGINA – Saskatchewan’s Opposition says the carbon capture and storage facility at Boundary Dam is hurting the province’s international reputation.

SaskPower is being talked about around the world, but for the wrong reasons according to the NDP, who point to strong words from a United States senator, who once supported the project but now calls it a failure.

Joe Manchin, a Democrat from West Virginia known for backing coal-fired power plants south of the border, is denouncing the CCS plant near Estevan, which was used to help form new coal-fired power plant regulations in the U.S.

On November 10, he told Fox News “we based our plans on what we should be doing in America, to provide energy people depend upon, on a failed operation in Canada.”

In a letter to leaders of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Manchin says SaskPower performance results, used to form the agency’s policy, were false.

“Many of the glowing performance results cited by the EPA have been found to be nothing more than marketing spin and hyperbole,” the letter reads.

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NDP SaskPower critic Cathy Sproule says Crown executives aren’t telling the truth in trying to sell expertise gained from the CCS plant.

Sproule cited a SaskPower video presentation, still being used at events around the world, claiming the plant is capturing one million tonnes of carbon dioxide.

In reality, results have shown performance is less than half that. SaskPower showed the CCS unit on pace to capture roughly 400,000 tonnes of CO2 in 2015.

“The damage this is doing is very concerning,” Sproule said. “We need SaskPower … the government, to get it together, get the story straight.”

Since mid-Janaury, the best capture rate appears to be less than 65 per cent – and that’s only on the days the unit has been up and running. It’s been shut down due to mechanical issues more than half the time, SaskPower says.

READ MORE: Newly revealed SaskPower chart shows capture performance not improving

Bill Boyd, the minister responsible for SaskPower, admits Manchin’s comments aren’t helpful to the carbon capture plant’s reputation, but says there is still a strong international interest.

“We’re going to have to be very clear with people coming to look at this facility in the future that there’s problems associated with it,” Boyd said. “I don’t think they’d be unfamiliar with the fact that a project of this nature may have problems.”

Boyd says there are no more overseas trips scheduled to promote the CCS facility and that SaskPower will be more clear with international guests about the problems failures experienced so far.

Follow @mikemckinnon

©2015

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Police looking for 3 suspects after $1,500 baby stroller stolen in Burlington

Written by admin on 15/09/2019 Categories: 长沙夜网

TORONTO —; Police in Burlington are asking the public for help identifying three suspects wanted in connection with the theft of a $1,500 baby stroller from a business in the city last month.

Police said the suspects entered a business on Fairview Street and stole a black and tan Bugaboo double-wide stroller between 3 p.m. and 3:15 p.m. on Oct. 24.

Police in Burlington, Ont. released this image of three suspects wanted in connection with the theft of a $1,500 stroller.

Halton Regional Police/Handout

Police in Burlington, Ont. released this image of three suspects wanted in connection with the theft of a $1,500 stroller.

Halton Regional Police/Handout

The suspects are described by police as follows:

Suspect 1 – white man with a medium build, goatee, dark short hair, aged 25 to 30 years old wearing a black baseball hat, grey hooded sweatshirt with grey track pants, a puffy black jacket vest and black high-top running shoes.Suspect 2 – white man with a slim build, facial hair, short dark hair, aged 25 to 30 years old wearing a grey flat cap, dark blue jeans, a dark collared shirt, black jacket and dark running shoes with a white sole.Suspect 3 – white man with dark short hair, goatee, wearing an Under Armour baseball cap, a tan winter jacket with a hood, dark jeans and white shoes.

Anyone with information is asked to call Halton Regional Police or Crime Stoppers.

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©2015

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Man accused of running over girlfriend pleads guilty to manslaughter

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Kristoffer Del Campo pleaded guilty in Calgary court Monday in the 2013 death of his girlfriend, who died after being run over two years ago. He was sentenced to 6 years in prison.

Lacey Manion, 33, was killed after she was pinned underneath a vehicle in August 2013. Police said she was in the vehicle and got out just seconds before Del Campo’s Camaro drove onto the sidewalk and hit her.

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According to the agreed statement of facts, Del Campo was upset and angry that Manion would not return to the vehicle and that is when he drove the Camaro forward over the sidewalk. The Camaro pushed Manion northbound across two eastbound lanes of 42 Avenue S.E.

Del Campo was facing a charge of manslaughter which was later changed to a second degree murder charge.

Defence lawyer Adriano Iovinelli explained that it was a change in evidence that had the Crown Prosecutor accept the original charge of manslaughter.

“When you’re looking at second degree and life in jail with a minimum of ten years before parole eligibility,” Iovinelli said Monday. “He wanted to take responsibility, but for what he did which was a manslaughter and that’s how it was resolved today.”

Manion’s family expressed disappointment in the length of the sentence. Her mother, Yvonne Denomey, spoke with reporters outside court.

“Lacey had the most beautiful smile and she was just this fun-loving, happy person,” she said through tears.

Denomey said she would not acknowledge an apology Del Campo made in court.

“For me he’s just doing that for himself; I’m not ready to accept that.”

Del Campo was ordered to be deported back to the Philippines once his sentence is served.

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Want to be appointed to the Senate? 5 things you need to know

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Here are five things you need to know about the new process announced Thursday by the Trudeau government for appointing senators to the upper house. The process is aimed at restoring the Senate to its intended role as an independent chamber of sober second thought.

22 vacancies to be filled early in 2016

You don’t need to start compiling your resume just yet. The newly created, five-member advisory board – which is to recommend to the prime minister a short list of five names for each Senate vacancy – will be in a transition phase for the next few months. The first five of 22 existing vacancies are to be filled early in the new year after the board consults local community and indigenous organizations and elected leaders, among others, to find “high quality” candidates.

READ MORE: Why abolish the senate? “Because it’s 2015,” says Premier Wall

After that, however, the board’s consultation process will be expanded. And that will include taking applications from individuals. The government anticipates filling the other 17 vacancies by the end of 2016. The process will also apply to all new vacancies that arise as senators retire.

Meet constitutional requirements

The Senate chamber is prepared for the resumption of the session on Parliament Hill September 12, 2014, in Ottawa.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

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You must meet the constitutional requirements to sit in the Senate: be between 30 and 75 years of age; own property worth $4,000 in the province you wish to represent; and have an overall net worth of at least $4,000. In the case of Quebec, a nominee must own property or be resident in the specific electoral district he or she wants to represent.

The Constitution also requires that a senator “shall be resident” in the province he or she is appointed to represent. But don’t think you’ll be able to declare an occasional cottage as your primary place of residence, a la Mike Duffy. In the wake of the Senate expenses scandal, the Trudeau government is now defining residency much more precisely.

READ MORE: Liberals move to ‘end partisanship’ in the Senate

You’ll have to provide documentation to prove that your “place of permanent residence” is in the province you wish to represent. And the government is further defining permanent residence to mean the place where a person is “ordinarily present”and has made home for at least two years prior to applying for a Senate seat.

An exception to the two-year rule may be made where a person has been temporarily absent from his or her home province for school or employment reasons but can prove the intention to return home.

Diversity is key

Minister of Justice Jody Wilson-Raybould holds a news conference in Ottawa, Monday, November 16, 2015.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand

It will help if you’re a woman, an indigenous person or a member of a linguistic, ethnic or other minority group. The advisory board is instructed to consider gender balance and the Senate’s role in representing minorities as it searches for worthy nominees.

It will also help if you’re bilingual. Fluency in both official languages is not required but “will be considered an asset.”

Are you non-partisan?

Sen. Mike Duffy, a former member of the Conservative caucus, arrives at the courthouse in Ottawa on Nov. 19, 2015.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang

You’ll need to demonstrate an ability to contribute to the Senate’s work in an independent and non-partisan manner, although past political activity will not disqualify you.

You’ll also have to demonstrate a “solid knowledge” of the Constitution and legislative process, including the role of the Senate.

And you’ll have to demonstrate “outstanding personal qualities,” including adhering to the principles and standards of public life, ethics and integrity.

Public servants and outstanding community members

On top of all that, you will have to demonstrate at least one of the following three criteria: a high level of experience in the legislative process and public service at the federal or provincial level; a lengthy and recognized record of service to your community; and/or recognized leadership and an outstanding record of achievement in your profession or chosen field of expertise.

©2015

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What about Beirut? As world grieves for Paris, Mideast victims of ISIS feel ignored

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BAGHDAD – Within hours of the last week’s Paris attacks, as outrage and sympathy flooded his social media feeds and filled the airwaves, Baghdad resident Ali al-Makhzomy updated his Facebook cover photo to read “solidarity” —; and his friends were shocked.

“Everyone was like why are you posting about Paris and not about the attacks in Baghdad every day,” the recent law school graduate said. “A lot of my friends said, ‘ok, so you care more about them than you care about us?”‘

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He had unintentionally tapped into frustration in Iraq, Lebanon and Syria with what many see as a double-standard: The world unites in outrage and sympathy when the Islamic State group kills Westerners, but pays little attention to the near-daily atrocities it carries out in the Middle East.

READ MORE: ‘We are all in the same boat’ says French-born Muslim after two sisters gunned down by ISIS attack

The day before the Paris attacks, twin suicide bombers struck a southern Beirut suburb, killing at least 43 people, and on Friday a suicide bomber struck a funeral in Iraq, killing at least 21. Both attacks were claimed by the IS group and reported by major media outlets, but generated little interest outside the region, where the turmoil of recent years has made such events seem like a sadly regular occurrence.

Baghdad has seen near-daily attacks in recent years, mainly targeting the security forces and the country’s Shiite majority. Bombings killed an average of more than 90 civilians a month last year, according to Iraq Body Count, a U.K.-based group that documents civilian deaths in Iraq.

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The civil war in neighbouring Syria has killed 250,000 people since 2011. There, government warplanes regularly carry out raids using so-called barrel bombs that demolish entire apartment blocks and insurgent groups shell government-held neighbourhoods.

Lebanon, however, had been relatively calm for the past year, leading many to feel that last week’s tragedy was unfairly neglected. Many were angered by Facebook’s deployment of a new feature in the wake of the Paris attacks that allowed users to check in and say they were safe. The feature was not available for the Beirut attacks.

“‘We’ don’t get a safe button on Facebook,” Lebanese blogger Joey Ayoub wrote. “‘We’ don’t get late night statements from the most powerful men and women alive and millions of online users.”

Facebook released a statement saying it had previously only used the Safety Check feature after natural disasters and said it would be used for “other serious and tragic incidents in the future.”

Photo essay: Celebrating life and brotherhood following Paris attacks

But it added that “during an ongoing crisis, like war or epidemic, Safety Check in its current form is not that useful for people: because there isn’t a clear start or end point and, unfortunately, it’s impossible to know when someone is truly ‘safe.”‘

Al-Makhzomy said the feature wouldn’t be quite as useful in Iraq.

“In Baghdad it’s not just like one attack,” he said. “You would need to have a date on the safety check, like I’m safe from this one or that one… There are too many for just ‘I’m Safe.”‘

Lebanese write Najib Mitri said he hoped that as the West mourns those killed in Paris it remembers that the IS group also targets Muslim civilians. “ISIS is the same for everyone,” he said, using another acronym for the group. “They aren’t just attacking the West.”

READ MORE: French President calls for 3-month extension of state of emergency

He said he was more frustrated by the response of many in the Middle East.

“I’m not angry at (the media) or Europeans at all. I’m irritated by Lebanese and Arabs who are more saddened by Paris than by the fact their own home cities are being destroyed.”

“The fault here,” he said, “isn’t that the West doesn’t care about us, it’s that we don’t care about ourselves in the first place.”

Al-Makhzomy, the young lawyer from Baghdad, blames Iraq’s violence on his own government.

“They are the ones who really don’t care about the Iraqi people and allow this security situation to continue,” he said. “And when I read the news, personally, I don’t see any difference if it’s French or Lebanese or Iraqi, it’s just about being a human being. They are attacking humanity, that’s it.”

©2015

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How Toronto is showing solidarity with Paris

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The world is still reeling from Friday’s terror attacks in Paris, and people around the world are finding myriad ways to express their grief and anger.

In Toronto, we’ve found both small and very large ways to show solidarity with those impacted by the tragedy in France, and elsewhere.

Vigils

Around 1,000 people gathered in Nathan Phillips Square Saturday for a solemn vigil to mourn the dead and wounded in Paris.

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“We feel this tragedy very intensely and it affects us very deeply,” Mayor John Tory said. “You are family, and we feel your pain across the oceans.”

READ MORE: Toronto vigil honours Paris victims

French Consul General Marc Trouyet thanked Toronto for “standing with all the French people.”

“I’ve been seeing and witnessing the colour of the French flag in the Toronto area, in the CN Tower yesterday. This is dear to our heart to see that we are all standing united facing the barbaric events.”

After the official ceremony, members of the crowd burst into a spontaneous rendition of La Marseillaise, the French National Anthem.

WATCH ABOVE: Toronto sings France’s national anthem during vigil for victims of Paris terror attacks

On Sunday, Mississauga held a vigil of its own to honour victims of many recent terror attacks, not just those in Paris. Sunday’s ceremony also commemorated last week’s bombings in Beirut and Baghdad, as well as April’s assault on Garissa University in Kenya that killed 147 people.

READ MORE: Paris attacks: What we know so far about the victims

“We are here today to show solidarity with the people of Paris, Baghdad, Beirut, and so many other countries around the globe where vile acts of terror have been committed,” Mayor Bonnie Crombie said. “Today, we unequivocally condemn this terrorism and say collectively that we will respond.”

Makeshift memorial

Mourners and well-wishers are laying flowers and candles at Yonge and Bloor streets, outside the building housing Toronto’s French consulate.

Sporting silence

On Saturday, the Toronto Maple Leafs commemorated the attacks as well with a pre-game moment of silence as the ice was lit in French colours. Singer Mason Greer also sang O Canada entirely in French.

The Toronto Maple Leafs, Vancouver Canucks and fans marked a moment of silence in support of France and Paris on Saturday.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

The Leafs’ Sunday game in New York also featured a moment of silence, unfortunately disrupted when one fan yelled “Let’s go, Rangers!” Mercifully, multiple fans responded with “Shhh” or just “Shut up!”

Tricolore landmarks

After the attacks, landmarks around the world were lit up in the colours of the French flag. The Sydney Opera House, Brandenburg Gate and The London Eye were just a few bathed in blue, white and red.

WATCH ABOVE: The CN Tower was lit up in red, white and blue to honour the victims of the tragic attacks in Paris.

Toronto was no exception as both the CN Tower and TORONTO sign at Nathan Phillips Square adopted the French colours.

©2015

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