Here are five of the top stories making headlines this afternoon:
Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair won’t have his contract renewed in April. Toronto Mayor Rob Ford’s one-time nemesis Blair will not be returning as head of police in Canada’s largest city when his contract expires in April 2015. Though Blair—who has served as chief since 2005—put his name forward, the Toronto Police Services Board today decided it was time for “organizational renewal.” It did not give further reasons for its decision. In the past year, Blair’s police force has overseen an investigation into the actions of Ford, including the video of the Toronto mayor smoking crack cocaine. Back in February, Ford taunted Blair, saying “arrest me.” Today, however, Ford thanked Blair for his years of service. Also today, DJ deadmau5 posted a video on his Youtube channel of an awkward 30-minute coffee date with Ford. Ford’s beverage of choice, in case you were wondering: five Tim’s espressos in one cup.
Israeli shell hits UN compound in Gaza. The Israeli military shot tank shells through the wall of a school where the UN was housing displaced refugees in Gaza early this morning, killing at least 17 people and injuring another 90. The White House condemned the attack on the UN school, as did UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Stephen Harper once again weighed in on the ongoing conflict, saying Hamas was solely responsible for the situation in Gaza.
Experts, again, prevented from reaching crash site of downed Malaysian Airlines flight in eastern Ukraine. It’s nearly two weeks after flight MH17 was shot down over eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 passengers, and international investigators have still not been able to reach the crash site. A team of Dutch and Australian forensic experts was, again, forced to turn back today due to heavy fighting in the area between the Ukrainian military and pro-Russian rebels. Only an estimated 200 bodies have been recovered so far, mainly by Russian rebels, and the team hasn’t been able to recover any of the wreckage for its investigation. The in-flight recorders, however, have been recovered.
Turkish women laugh in public, defying deputy PM Bülent Arinç. Turkish women are posting photos of themselves laughing on social media today, after the deputy prime minister gave some advice they didn’t agree with. “A woman should be chaste. She should know the difference between public and private. She should not laugh in public,” Arinç told a crowd celebrating the end of Ramadan. On Wednesday, women posted pictures of themselves on Twitter, causing the hashtags #direnkahkaha (resist laughter) and #direnkadin (resist woman) to trend in the country.
New U.S.-Canadian authority announced to oversee Detroit-Windsor bridge. The creation of the Windsor Detroit Bridge Authority, a non-profit Crown corporation, was announced today to oversee the construction of a new bridge at the busiest commercial border crossing between the U.S. and Canada. Canada has already pledged $1 billion to the project, which is slated to open in 2020. The U.S., however, still needs to confirm its portion of the funding. The entire project is expected to cost $4 billion.