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Six stories in Canada we’re watching

April 10: The PM is off to Panama, the Duffy trial continues, and sentencing in the Via Rail terror trial


 
Darren Calabrese/CP

Darren Calabrese/CP

PM HARPER OFF TO PANAMA FOR SUMMIT OF THE AMERICAS

Prime Minister Stephen Harper is attending the Summit of the Americas that starts today in Panama and Cuba will be on his radar. Cuban President Raul Castro is attending the summit, the first held since the U.S. agreed to move toward normalized relations. A government source says Harper would likely welcome a chance to talk to Castro.

SENATE RULES EXPERT TO TESTIFY AGAIN TODAY AT DUFFY TRIAL

A former senate law clerk returns to the stand today for a third day of cross-examination at the trial of suspended Sen. Mike Duffy. In his testimony Thursday, Mark Audcent explained the Senate administrative rules he helped draft in 2004. Duffy faces 31 charges of fraud, breach of trust and bribery and has pleaded not guilty.

SENTENCING ARGUMENTS TO BE HELD IN VIA RAIL TERROR TRIAL

A Toronto court will hear arguments today on the sentences for two man convicted of plotting to attack a Via Rail passenger train. A jury found Raed Jaser and Chiheb Esseghaier guilty of a number of terror related charges last month. Both men could be sentenced to life in prison.

TORONTO CHURCH WON’T ALLOW CONTROVERSIAL PIANIST TO PERFORM

A Ukrainian-born pianist barred from performing with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra who planned to perform at a north Toronto church tonight won’t be permitted to play there. Valentina Lisitsa had said via Twitter that she would give a free concert at Lawrence Park Community Church. But minister John Suk said the church has no interest in identifying with the attitudes Lisitsa has expressed regarding the Ukraine-Russia conflict.

SEX WORKER ADVOCACY GROUP WORRIED ABOUT PAN-AM POLICE SWEEP

A group that fights for the rights of sex workers is wondering if Toronto police intend to crackdown on street prostitution and petty crimes heading into this summer Pan-Am games. Jean McDonald, the executive director of Maggie’s, says police in other cities around the world have used major sports events as an excuse to round up sex workers.

IS IT SAFE TO TAKE MEDICATION PAST THE BEST BEFORE DATE?

The Canadian Pharmacists Association says there hasn’t been much study into the safety of taking over-the-counter and prescription medications beyond their best-before date. This week’s recall of a batch of Alesse birth control pills has focused attention about the best before dates on medication.

ALSO IN THE NEWS TODAY …

– American Kantha Souvannarath and Randall Steven Shepherd of Halifax appear in court on charges in connection with a planned attack on the Halifax Shopping Centre.

– Royal Bank holds its annual general meeting in Toronto.

– Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. releases March housing starts in Canada and Statistics Canada releases the labour force survey for March.


 

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