National Newswatch

Canada’s allies take aim at China’s Hong Kong law. What will Ottawa do?

Jul 2 2020 — Tonda MacCharles — China’s sweeping new national security law extending the Communist government’s control over Hong Kong takes aim not only at pro-democracy protesters but also non-residents, foreign governments, non-governmental organizations, and international media. It subjects all persons in Hong Kong, including non-residents acting “from outside the region,” to strict bans on political activities that Beijing deems to […]

South Korea and Taiwan show Canada how to avoid a second wave of COVID-19, experts tell MPs

Jun 23 2020 — Tonda MacCharles — Canada could avoid a second wave of the coronavirus if it learns the lessons of South Korea and Taiwan and attacks testing, tracing and treatment of COVID-19 cases and practices “dynamic distancing” from the get-go, MPs heard Tuesday. That means as the economy reopens, communities must be ready to reimpose physical distancing and socially restrictive […]

Document reveals why Canada sent protective equipment to China as COVID-19 threat was growing

Apr 14 2020 — Tonda MacCharles — Canada’s health minister gave the approval to donating personal protective equipment from the national emergency stockpile that was on the verge of expiry to China, a newly released email shows. A Jan. 31 email written by Public Health Agency of Canada chief of staff Marnie Johnstone indicates Health Minister Patty Hajdu had offered “notional agreement” […]

The 10 people leading Ottawa’s fight against COVID-19

Mar 16 2020 — Tonda MacCharles — Who’s the cast of characters managing the COVID-19 crisis at the federal cabinet level? Prime Minister Justin Trudeau struck a special cabinet committee last week to focus the federal response to the novel coronavirus outbreak. It unveiled a $1 billion aid package Wednesday. Here’s a look at Trudeau’s COVID-19 team:

Wilson-Raybould blasts Trudeau and offers four proposals to help resolve the Wet’suwet’en blockades crisis

Feb 19 2020 — Tonda MacCharles — It was nearly midnight Tuesday in the last hour of an emergency debate on the Wet’suwet’en blockades crisis when Jody Wilson-Raybould stood in the Commons, blasted the Trudeau government for “punting” the hard work of resetting Indigenous relations, and laid out four proposals to ease tensions. Wilson-Raybould, now an independent MP, called for Trudeau to […]

John Crosbie was a politician unafraid of matching action to words

Jan 11 2020 — Tonda MacCharles — John Crosbie was born a Newfoundlander in 1931, long before his fellow citizens voted to join the country called Canada. At home, he was a towering political figure. A Liberal who stood up to Joey Smallwood and challenged the leadership of his mentor, the legendary premier who had dragged Newfoundland and Labrador into Confederation, Crosbie […]

Judicial jousting emerges at Supreme Court of Canada

Dec 27 2019 — Tonda MacCharles — This is what brawls look like on the top court bench. Judges don’t throw off their robes and come to blows. What they do — judicial jousting — is more subtle. Split rulings. Lengthy dissenting opinions. Constitutional decisions that see judges split not only into two groups, but sometimes going three or four different ways. […]

Jailed for seven years, Canada to press the case of human rights blogger Raif Badawi with Saudi Arabia

Dec 14 2019 — Tonda MacCharles — Canada’s new foreign affairs minister is raising fresh concerns about two human rights advocates jailed in a Saudi Arabian prison who have begun hunger strikes, among them Raif Badawi, whose wife and three children live in Canada. Foreign Affairs Minister François-Philippe Champagne, speaking after attending an international human rights conference in Berlin and travelling to […]