For two Virginia police officers who posed for a photo during the deadly U.S. Capitol insurrection, the reckoning has been swift and public: They were identified, charged with crimes and arrested. But for five Seattle officers the outcome is less clear. Their identities still secret, two are on leave and three continue to work while a police watchdog investigates whether their actions in the nation's capital on Jan. 6 crossed the line from protected political speech to lawbreaking. The contrasting cases highlight the dilemma faced by police departments nationwide as they review the behaviour of dozens of officers who were in Washington the day of the riot by supporters of President Donald Trump. Officials and experts agree that officers who were involved in the melee should be fired and charged for their role. But what about those officers who attended only the Trump rally before the riot? How does a department balance an officer's free speech rights with the blow to public trust that comes from the attendance of law enforcement at an event with far-right militants and white nationalists who went on to assault the seat of American democracy? An Associated Press survey of law enforcement agencies nationwide found that at least 31 officers in 12 states are being scrutinized by their supervisors for their behaviour in the District of Columbia or face criminal charges for participating in the riot. Officials are looking into whether the officers violated any laws or policies or participated in the violence while in Washington. A Capitol Police officer died after he was hit in the head with a fire extinguisher as rioters descended on the building and many other officers were injured. A woman was shot to death by Capitol Police and three other people died after medical emergencies during the chaos. Most of the officers have not been publicly identified; only a few have been charged. Some were identified by online sleuths. Others were reported by their colleagues or turned themselves in. They come from some of the country’s largest cities — three Los Angeles officers and a sheriff’s deputy, for instance — as well as state agencies and a Pennsylvania police department with nine officers. Among them are an Oklahoma sheriff and New Hampshire police chief who have acknowledged being at the rally, but denied entering the Capitol or breaking the law. “If they were off-duty, it’s totally free speech,” said Will Aitchison, a lawyer in Portland, Oregon, who represents law enforcement officers. “People have the right to express their political views regardless of who’s standing next to them. You just don’t get guilt by association.” But Ayesha Bell Hardaway, a professor at Case Western Reserve University law school, said an officer’s presence at the rally creates a credibility issue as law enforcement agencies work to repair community trust, especially after last summer's of protests against police brutality sparked by the police killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. Communities will question the integrity of officers who attended the rally along with “individuals who proudly profess racist and divisive viewpoints,” she said. “It calls into question whether those officers are interested in engaging in policing in a way that builds trust and legitimacy in all communities, including communities of colour.” In Rocky Mount, a Virginia town of about 1,000, Sgt. Thomas Robertson and Officer Jacob Fracker were suspended without pay and face criminal charges after posting a photo of themselves inside the Capitol during the riot. According to court records, Robertson wrote on social media that the “Left are just mad because we actually attacked the government who is the problem … The right IN ONE DAY took the f(asterisk)(asterisk)(asterisk)(asterisk) U.S. Capitol. Keep poking us.” Attempts to contact the pair were unsuccessful and court records do not list lawyers. Leaders in Rocky Mount declined to be interviewed. In a statement, they said the events at the Capitol were tragic. “We stand with and add our support to those who have denounced the violence and illegal activity that took place that day,” said Police Chief Ken Criner, Capt. Mark Lovern and Town Manager James Ervin. “Our town and our police department absolutely does not condone illegal or unethical behaviour by anyone, including our officers and staff.” On the other side of the county, five Seattle officers are under investigation by the city’s Office of Police Accountability. Two officers posted photos of themselves on social media while in the district and officials are investigating to determine where they were and what they were doing. Three others told supervisors that they went to Washington for the events and are being investigated for what they did while there. Seattle Police Chief Adrian Diaz said his department supports officers’ freedom of speech and that those who were in the nation's capital will be fired if they “were directly involved in the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.” But police leaders need to evaluate more than just clear criminal behaviour, according to Chuck Wexler, executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum, a policing research and policy group. They must also consider how their actions affect the department credibility, he said. Officers' First Amendment rights “don’t extend to expressing words that may be violent or maybe express some prejudice,” Wexler said, “because that’s going to reflect on what they do when they’re working, when they’re testifying in court.” Through the summer and fall, Seattle police — along with officers elsewhere — came under criticism for their handling of mass protests against police brutality following the death of George Floyd. The city received more than 19,000 complaints against officers, most for excessive use of force and improper use of pepper spray. Andrew Myerberg, director of the Seattle Office of Police Accountability, said none of the officers now under investigation were involved in those cases. But Sakara Remmu, cofounder of Black Lives Matter Seattle/King County, said the officers should be fired regardless. Their public declarations of solidarity with Trump fosters not just community distrust, but terror of the entire department, she said. “It absolutely does matter when the decorum of racial peace cracks and racial hatred comes through, because we already have a documented history and legacy of what that means in this country,” Remmu said. In Houston, the police chief decried an officer who resigned and was later charged in the riot. A lawyer for Officer Tam Pham said the 18-year veteran of the force "very much regrets” being at the rally and was “deeply remorseful.” But many chiefs have said their officers committed no crimes. “The Arkansas State Police respects the rights and freedom of an employee to use their leave time as the employee may choose,” department spokesman Bill Sadler said of two officers who attended the Trump rally. Malik Aziz, the former chair and executive director of the National Black Police Association, compared condemning all officers who were in Washington to tarring all the protesters who took to streets after the killing of George Floyd with the violent and destructive acts of some. A major with the Dallas Police Department, Aziz said police acting privately have the same rights as other Americans, but that knowingly going to a bigoted event should be disqualifying for an officer. “There’s no place in law enforcement for that individual,” Aziz said. Martha Bellisle And Jake Bleiberg, The Associated Press
Saskatchewan's premier says the fight over the Keystone XL pipeline isn't over yet. In a recent interview with CBC's Rosemary Barton, Premier Scott Moe says conversations around the TC Energy project are ongoing, despite U.S. President Joe Biden's recent cancellation of the pipeline's permit by executive order. "I wouldn't say this project is over by any stretch. There is a lot of conversation to have on KXL," Moe said in an interview on Rosemary Barton Live. The 1,897-kilometre pipeline would have carried 830,000 barrels of crude oil daily from oilsands in Hardisty, Alta., to Nebraska, connecting to the original Keystone pipeline running to the U.S. Gulf Coast refineries. A portion of the project would have crossed into southern Saskatchewan. Moe, along with Alberta Premier Jason Kenney and Ontario Premier Doug Ford, has pushed Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the federal government to take action against the pipeline's halt. That could include economic sanctions, Moe suggested — a possibility also raised by Kenney. "I haven't said that we should go to sanctions and sanctions should be utilized first," Moe said in his interview with Barton. "But sanctions are always on the table in any conversation or any challenge that we may have with our trading relationship with our largest partner." The project, originally blocked by U.S. President Barack Obama, was then approved by President Donald Trump, who wanted to negotiate the terms of the project, before ultimately being blocked again by Biden in the first days of his presidency. Federal Opposition leader Erin O'Toole has also expressed frustration over the cancellation of the project, saying in a statement it "will devastate thousands of Canadian families who have already been badly hurt by the economic crisis." Trudeau's government has repeatedly said that it supports the project and has made that clear to the new U.S. administration, but both the prime minister and Canada's ambassador to the U.S. have said it is time to respect the decision and move on. Speaking on Friday morning, Trudeau reiterated his disappointment with the cancellation and said he would raise the issue during his phone call with Biden scheduled for later in the day. "Obviously the decision on Keystone XL is a very difficult one for workers in Alberta and Saskatchewan who've had many difficult hits," he said. "Over the past years we have been there for them and we will continue to be there for them and I will express my concern for jobs and livelihoods in Canada, particularly in the West, directly in my conversation with President Biden." Trudeau stressed he and the new president are on the same wavelength on fighting climate change and middle-class job creation, as well as the "values of Canadians." Moe called the cancellation a "devastating blow to North American energy security," and said in the interview with Barton he'll continue to advocate for the pipeline, which he says has both economic and environmental benefits for Canada.
Germany has asked Taiwan to persuade Taiwanese manufacturers to help ease a shortage of semiconductor chips in the auto sector which is hampering its fledgling economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Automakers around the world are shutting assembly lines due to problems in the delivery of semiconductors, which in some cases have been exacerbated by the former Trump administration's actions against key Chinese chip factories. The shortage has affected Volkswagen VOWG_p.DE, Ford Motor Co F.N, Subaru Corp 7270.T, Toyota Motor Corp 7203.T, Nissan Motor Co Ltd 7201.T, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and other car makers.
The Winnipeg Jets got the better of the Ottawa Senators for a third consecutive game, capping off an eventful day for the franchise. Paul Stastny, Mark Scheifele and Blake Wheeler each had three-point nights in a 6-3 Winnipeg Jets win over the Ottawa Senators at Bell MTS Place in Winnipeg late Saturday night. Stastny and Scheifele scored a goal and added two assists in the Jets' win (4-1-0), their third consecutive victory over the Senators (1-3-1). Winnipeg also beat Ottawa last Tuesday and Thursday. Meanwhile, Wheeler had three assists. The victory came at the end of a long day for the Jets. Earlier in the day, the Jets traded winger Patrik Laine and centre Jack Roslovic for centre Pierre-Luc Dubois and a 2022 third-round draft pick. "Clearly, we had an eventful morning here," Jets coach Paul Maurice said. "And then you've got a 9:00 (Central time) game that just starts a half an hour before my bedtime. I don't know how the players feel about that." "We have a game to play," Wheeler said. "It's the most important thing. We're professionals. Unfortunately, it's part of this business. But at the end of the day, it's what we do for a living. This is bigger than anything else that happened today. I thought it was a good effort for our team and a big win." Andrew Copp also added a pair of goals. Kyle Connor and Nikolaj Ehlers also scored for Winnipeg. Evgenii Dadonov, Brady Tkachuk and Nick Paul each scored a goal for Ottawa, but they ultimately couldn't keep up with the Jets once they scored three goals with less than five minutes to go in the game. "They were coming out hard in the third period," Paul said. "I think we just got to keep making plays to break out and once we hit their blue line, get pucks deep." Senators forward Derek Stepan hopes his teammates can learn from tonight's game, specifically that they can continue to press their opponent through a 60-minute effort and not just through two periods of play. "With a younger group you want to continue to push and teach them that it's okay to continue just to play the way you did in the first two periods and you don't need to change anything. You don't need to sit back." Stepan said. Senators goalie Marcus Hogberg made 32 saves in the loss, while Connor Hellebuyck made 18 saves for the Jets. Ehlers opened the scoring with 5:57 left to play in the first period with a power play goal. Ehlers quickly fired a shot past Hogberg after receiving a pass from defenceman Neil Pionk. Adam Lowry also picked up an assist on the goal. The Senators' offence woke up in the second period with three goals, beginning with Dadonov tying the game a little over four minutes in. The forward drove to the net while trying to brush off a defenceman. While falling, Dadonov used his stick to push the puck through Connor Hellebuyck's pads. As the puck trickled into the net, Dadonov crashed into the boards. But, he soon raised himself up to celebrate with his teammates. It was the Russian's first as an Ottawa Senator. Connor would later give the Jets the lead once more, scoring his fourth of the season to make it 2-1. Scheifele and Wheeler each picked up an assist on the goal. Tkachuk then tied the game with 8:46 to go in the second. Tkachuk retrieved a backhand pass from Austin Watson with a Winnipeg Jet draped behind him. Tkachuk would then spin around and fire on net, beating Hellebuyck between his legs. Paul gave the Ottawa Senators their first lead of the game with over five minutes to play. Paul fired a shot into the top-right corner of the night for his second goal of the season. Copp then tied the game in the early stages of the third. Paul Stastny handled the puck in the offensive zone before passing the puck to Copp, who redirected the puck towards goal but hit the post. Copp would immediately bury the puck into the back of the net. The Jets would take the lead on a power play goal from Stastny with 4:15 left to play. Prior to the goal, Senators forward Derek Stepan lifted the puck out of play and was later called for a delay of game penalty. Stastny would soon take advantage with his first goal of the season. Copp added a fifth goal for the Jets seconds later as he whacked at the puck several times in front of Hogberg, eventually earning his second of the night. Stepan fired a puck from distance to put his team within one, but the goal was reviewed and eventually waved off after a Senators player was offside. The Jets would eventually put it out of reach thanks to an empty-net goal from Scheifele with 2:09 to play in the third. Winnipeg will be back in action Sunday night against the Edmonton Oilers. Ottawa will play the Vancouver Canucks Monday night. NOTES: Blake Wheeler's assist on Kyle Connor's second period goal was the 500th of his career. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 23, 2021. The Canadian Press
Bangladesh will buy 100,000 tonnes of rice from Myanmar, putting aside a rift over the Rohingya refugee crisis as the government races to overcome a shortage of the staple food for the country's more than 160 million people. High rice prices pose a problem for the Dhaka government, which is ramping up efforts to replenish its depleted reserves after floods last year ravaged crops and sent prices to a record high. Muslim-majority Bangladesh and mostly Buddhist Myanmar have been at odds over the more than 1 million Muslim Rohingya refugees in camps in southern Bangladesh.
Pirates off Nigeria's coast kidnapped 15 sailors from a Turkish container ship in the Gulf of Guinea on Saturday in a brazen and violent attack that was farther from shore than usual. One sailor was killed in the raid, an Azerbaijani citizen, while those kidnapped are from Turkey, according to the respective governments and a crew list seen by Reuters. Accounts from crew, family members and security sources described a sophisticated and well-orchestrated attack on Saturday in which armed pirates boarded the ship and breached its protective citadel, possibly with explosives.
There was no distribution plan for the coronavirus vaccine set up by the Trump administration as the virus raged in its last months in office, new President Joe Biden's chief of staff, Ron Klain, said on Sunday. "The process to distribute the vaccine, particularly outside of nursing homes and hospitals out into the community as a whole, did not really exist when we came into the White House," Klain said on NBC's "Meet the Press." Biden, a Democrat who took over from Republican President Donald Trump on Wednesday, has promised a fierce fight against the pandemic that killed 400,000 people in the United States under Trump’s watch.
India said it will administer homegrown coronavirus vaccine COVAXIN in seven more states from Monday as it seeks to inoculate 30 million healthcare workers across the country. The government this month gave emergency-use approval to the vaccine, developed by Bharat Biotech International Ltd and state-run Indian Council of Medical Research, and another licensed from Oxford University and AstraZeneca PLC that is being manufactured by the Serum Institute of India.
A U.S. aircraft carrier group led by the USS Theodore Roosevelt has entered the South China Sea to promote "freedom of the seas", the U.S. military said on Sunday, at a time when tensions between China and Taiwan have raised concern in Washington. U.S. Indo-Pacific Command said in a statement the strike group entered the South China Sea on Saturday, the same day Taiwan reported a large incursion of Chinese bombers and fighter jets into its air defence identification zone in the vicinity of the Pratas Islands.
VANCOUVER — Several Metro Vancouver taxi companies have lost a court bid to quash the approvals of ride-hailing operators Uber and Lyft in British Columbia. Nine cab companies filed a petition asking the B.C. Supreme Court to overturn the decisions of the provincial Passenger Transportation Board that allowed the two major ride-hailing providers to operate. The cab companies argued that the board's decisions were "patently unreasonable," because they allowed Uber and Lyft an unlimited fleet size while the number of taxis is capped. The companies, including Yellow Cab and Black Top Cabs, claimed that the board failed to consider whether there was a public need for an unlimited number of ride-hailing cars in the province. The board also did not consider whether granting unlimited licences to Uber and Lyft would promote "sound economic conditions" in the passenger transportation business in B.C., the cab companies argued. The cab companies said that the board had extensive evidence before it describing the economic harm suffered by taxi operators in other jurisdictions as a result of allowing unlimited ride-hailing. However, Justice Sandra Wilkinson said in a written ruling this week that the board carefully considered fleet size and decided not to limit ride-hailing cars at this time, but left the issue open for future review. "In each of the decisions, the board devotes numerous paragraphs to discussing whether an indeterminate fleet size will promote sound economic conditions in the passenger transportation industry," she wrote in the decision dated Jan. 20. "This is not a deferral of a decision or a failure to consider the issue of fleet size. I would go so far as to say that the board made a very common sense decision in the circumstances." The board's decisions were made one year ago, on Jan. 23, 2020. Wilkinson added there is nothing in the board's decisions that is "obviously untenable" or "clearly irrational," and therefore they cannot be considered "patently unreasonable." She dismissed the petition and granted costs to Uber and Lyft. The B.C. Taxi Association, Yellow Cab and Black Top Cabs did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the ruling. Uber said in a statement that the ruling of the justice is clear and speaks for itself. "Uber is excited to be celebrating one year in Metro Vancouver this weekend, and looks forward to making the app available in more communities in 2021," it said. Lyft did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The arrival of ride-hailing in Metro Vancouver early last year, long after it was already common in many other Canadian cities, was contentious. The provincial government has said it spent two years developing legislation and regulations in advance of ride-hailing licences being approved by the Passenger Transportation Board. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 23, 2021. Laura Dhillon Kane, The Canadian Press
Thompson Families can now document the memories they made at home during the COVID-19 pandemic using time capsules offered for free by Kiddies Northern Preschool. The time capsule allows families to reflect on their 2020 and how the year has affected them in regards to connections and celebrations. All families in Thompson are eligible to receive the time capsule kits consisting of a notebook, pencils, crayons and a glue stick. “Knowing that families need to stay at home, I believe a lot of families are running out of ideas. This is an opportunity for them to do something outside their regular activities,” said Lynn Martin, the Director of Kiddies Northern Preschool on Wednesday. “Our ultimate goal is to get families together and get them talking. This can help younger and older children cope with the stresses that COVID-19 has brought on and look back from the future to see how they came through this trying time.” Families living in Thompson can put anything they want in their notebooks, whether it be photos, drawings or writings about how they have lived throughout the COVID-19 outbreak. This initiative was made possible due to the Manitoba Safe at Home grant that provided the preschool with $7,000 to purchase supplies for families across the city. The grant encourages families to spend more time at home to reduce the spread of COVID-19 by funding health, education and entertainment programming. Initially, the preschool wanted to plan something for families during the Christmas holidays when they thought about time capsules. They wanted to send the kits to families over the winter break, but some supplies did not come in time so the preschool decided that it would be best to deliver the supplies in January. About 600 kits were sent to Burntwood Elementary, Deerwood School and Wapanohk Community School. These schools will distribute the kits to families who are willing to participate. Another seven hundred will be distributed to the remaining schools around Thompson by the end of January. For those who are homeschooling their children or who are not affiliated with these schools but like to participate, they can reach out to the preschool at 204-778-7739, and arrangements will be made to deliver the time capsule kits. By the end of February, families would need to return their notebooks to their schools or drop them off in a bucket outside the preschool. The notebooks will then be sealed in a Rubbermaid tote and kept in a classroom at the preschool for approximately a decade. The rest of the supplies they received in the kits are for them to keep. Each family was told to write their names and current address so that they would be able to identify their notebooks in the future. “Through Facebook, we have seen a lot of comments about what an excellent idea this is. We have received one book back so far, and they did an amazing job,” said Martin. “There was so much detail in there; you could tell the family was invested in doing this with their child, which is exactly what we wanted to see.” Martin hopes the preschool can have a big community party for families who participated in January of 2030 and look back at the memories made in their past. Nicole Wong is a Local Journalism Initiative reporter who works out of the Winnipeg Sun. The Local Journalism Initiative is funded by the Government of Canada. Nicole Wong, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Winnipeg Sun
Chinese air force planes including 12 fighter jets entered Taiwan's air defence identification zone for a second day on Sunday, Taiwan said, as tensions rise near the island just days into U.S. President Joe Biden's new administration. China views democratically ruled Taiwan as its own territory, and has in the past few months increased military activity near the island. But China's activities over the weekend mark a ratcheting up with fighters and bombers being dispatched rather than reconnaissance aircraft as had generally been the case in recent weeks.
Jerry Fontaine believes that it is essential for the Anishinabeg to reconnect with non-colonized ways of thinking, social organization, and decision-making processes to achieve sovereignty and self-determination. The former Chief of Sagkeeng First Nation addresses this by detailing accounts of former Indigenous leaders in his first book, Our Hearts Are As One Fire. In his book, he shares the narrative of three Indigenous leaders; Obwandiac, Tecumtha and Shingwauk, during the history of Manitou Aki. “Every one of their stories is mentioned in the book. I was very careful to respect the memory of these three leaders,” said Fontaine, who is also an Assistant Professor at the University of Winnipeg’s Department of Indigenous Studies, during his book launch. “The stories that are shared here are their stories. I shared them respectfully and with great care.” Published by the UBC Press, the book tries to understand what happened during the N’swi-ishko-day-kawn Anishinabeg O’dish-ko-day-kawn, also known as the Three Fires Confederacy, from an Ojibway-Anishinabe perspective. “It (the book) is about reclaiming and reframing our history. We have talked about this for so long, that others have been telling our story,” said Fontaine. “There has been distortion and misrepresentation of our story. I think the time has come for us to tell our own stories and now, you are seeing our own people take control in terms of how our stories and knowledge is shared.” Fontaine sought after the descendants of these three leaders to recount the history of how they challenged aggressive colonial expansion. Obwandiac or Pontiac was an Indigenous leader who stood up and resisted against the British policies in the mid-1700s. Tecumtha or Tecumseh was an Indigenous warrior and orator who unified the Anishinaabe nation and fought against the destruction of their sovereign states in Canada. Shingwauk was an Anishinabe chief who fought alongside Tecumtha in 1812 as well as established the Garden River First Nation in 1850. He was also a signatory to the Robinson Huron Treaty in 1850, which has become a template to various treaties now, including Treaties One and Two that was negotiated in 1871. “I want to acknowledge Obwandiac, Tecumtha and Shingwauk’s family. I want to say Miigwetch for sharing, taking time, showing me respect and having the trust to share stories of their grandfathers,” said Fontaine. Fontaine strongly trusts that many have misrepresented and distorted the image of these leaders. Due to this, he took this opportunity to reframe the history of Manitou Aki and report how traditional leadership and governance principles can support the leaders of today and into the future. The book cover was drawn by Steve Pego, a family member of Fontaine and a former Tribal Chief of the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe. On the cover, a circle is drawn in red and blue to encompass a drum. On top of the drum is a pipe coloured in red and black. “It (the book) is very understanding and it just takes your interest. I’m very happy to be part of this,” said Pego. Nicole Wong is a Local Journalism Initiative reporter who works out of the Winnipeg Sun. The Local Journalism Initiative is funded by the Government of Canada. Nicole Wong, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Winnipeg Sun
A Canadian couple has been charged under the Yukon's Civil Emergency Measures Act after allegedly chartering a plane to the territory and misrepresenting themselves in order to get the COVID-19 vaccine. Kristen Robinson reports.
Liquor restrictions in Fort Simpson are set to be lifted on February 1, the village's mayor has said. The village voted to lift the restrictions in November. However, the change requires formalization from the N.W.T. government, meaning the restrictions did not simply lift the day following that plebiscite. Mayor of Fort Simpson Sean Whelly on Friday said a regulation had now been drafted that would lift restrictions from February 1. The territorial government's Department of Finance, which holds oversight of the relevant legislation, did not respond to confirm that date when approached by Cabin Radio. Fort Simpson will still have restrictions in place, despite the plebiscite's result, as the territory must abide by separate, pandemic-related restrictions on alcohol sales mandated for all N.W.T. communities. The plebiscite applied only to a set of restrictions specific to Fort Simpson that had existed before the pandemic. The pandemic rules state customers are limited to a maximum spend of $200 per day at any N.W.T. liquor store, plus a limit of six mickeys (375-ml bottles) of spirits in any 24-hour period. The plebiscite was held in response to a petition signed by more than 150 Fort Simpson residents asking for the village's restrictions to be removed. November's ballot saw 240 of 730 eligible residents vote, with 175 in favour of the change. Fifty-eight were opposed while seven ballots were rejected. The result was criticized by some residents who felt not enough public notice had been given beforehand. Finance minister Caroline Wawzonek dismissed that complaint. “Based on all of the information I have received to date, I am confident in the integrity of the plebiscite held in the village of Fort Simpson,” Wawzonek said in response. Sarah Sibley, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Cabin Radio
Chinese rescuers pulled 11 gold miners to safety on Sunday with most of them in good condition after 14 days trapped underground after an explosion, but 10 colleagues were still unaccounted for, state media reported. Rescue workers wrapped the barely responsive man in a blanket and took him to hospital by ambulance. Over the next few hours, 10 miners from a different section of the mine, who had been getting food and medical supplies down a shaft from rescue workers last week, were brought out in batches.
Some staff in long term care and designated supportive living facilities have yet to receive their first dose of COVID-19 vaccine, despite the premier announcing last week that all staff and residents got their first doses. Alberta Union of Provincial Employees (AUPE) vice-president Bonnie Gostola said the union heard from members who work in general services in the facilities that were tagged for the first round of immunizations but who haven't received one yet. "There's at least four facilities that have reached out and said 'We haven't gotten them,'" Gostola said Saturday, adding that there are facilities where it seems doses have been given to nursing staff but not other workers providing food and environmental services like laundry and cleaning. She said the union is still trying to gather data on how many members were affected. "It's not fair to them. It's not fair to the Albertans we serve every day," she said, adding that rural facilities seem more affected. "We want them to be upfront with Albertans. They did not complete what they said they completed," Gostola said. Alberta Health Services spokesperson Kerry Williamson said Saturday that a small number of staff were inadvertently left out of the vaccine rollout. "We will offer vaccinations to those staff as quickly as possible, pending vaccine availability," he said. On Jan. 18, Premier Jason Kenney announced that all staff and residents in long term care and designated supportive living had received their first dose. The groups were on a limited list with other healthcare workers set to receive vaccines in phase 1A. The same day, Kenney announced Alberta was on the cusp of running out of vaccine and that the province was putting a temporary hold on first dose vaccinations to ensure there would be enough to provide second doses to people who had already received the first shot. The news came days after the federal government announced that shipments from Pfizer will be reduced until mid-February. In a statement Saturday, Alberta Health spokesman Tom McMillan said the shortage means they have no choice but to postpone first dose appointments for many eligible healthcare workers, and that many second dose appointments will also need to be rescheduled in the coming weeks. Pfizer recommends the second dose of its vaccine be administered 21 days after the first. Earlier this month, Alberta Health extended the interval between first and second doses from three or four weeks, as it had been doing, to as many as 42 days so as many Albertans as possible get the protection of those first doses. McMillan said Saturday they have reserved enough to ensure all long-term care and designated supportive residents get their second shot, adding that AHS believes it will be able to provide second shots to eligible healthcare workers within the established window, but that there is still uncertainty about how much vaccine Canada will have in the first half of February. As of Friday, Alberta had administered 98,807 doses of the vaccine. Close to 50,000 doses were administered to eligible staff and residents in continuing care sites.
Former President Donald Trump considered replacing the acting attorney general with an official willing to pursue unsubstantiated claims of election fraud, and he pushed the Justice Department to ask the Supreme Court to invalidate President Joe Biden’s victory, the Wall Street Journal reported on Saturday. Citing people familiar with the matter, the Journal said the efforts in the last weeks of Trump's presidency failed because of resistance from his Justice appointees who refused to file what they viewed as a legally baseless lawsuit in the Supreme Court. Other senior department officials later threatened to resign if Trump fired then-acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen, several people familiar with the discussions told the Journal.
Malaysian maritime authorities have arrested 16 Vietnamese fishermen from two boats they said were encroaching in Malaysia's waters without a license, the Bernama state news agency reported. The fishermen and their boats were detained off Terengganu state, on the east coast of peninsular Malaysia, on Friday, the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) said. "Checks conducted on the two boats found that 16 crew members including the skippers, aged 18 to 62, did not have any valid identification documents nor possessed any licence to fish in the country's waters," Terengganu MMEA director Captain Muhammad Suffi Mohd Ramli was reported as saying.
LA QUINTA, Calif. — Max Homa has been tearing up the Stadium Course at The American Express for two days. If he can do it one more time Sunday, the Southern California native could be raising his second career PGA Tour trophy. Homa made nine birdies and shrugged off a double bogey on the way to a 7-under 65 in the third round Saturday, joining Tony Finau and Si Woo Kim atop the leaderboard at 15-under 201. Richy Werenski also shot a 65 and moved within a shot of the lead on the Stadium Course at PGA West near Palm Springs. Roger Sloan of Merritt, Ont., is in a seven-way tie for 13th place after a 3-under 69 Saturday, four strokes behind Homa. Nick Taylor of Abbotsford, B.C. shot a 2-over 74, to fall into a tie for 31st place. Taylor finished his second round in second place, one stroke behind then-leader Sungjae Im. Fellow Abbotsford native Adam Hadwin also shot a 2-over 74 and is now in a tie for 55th place. Brantford, Ont. native David Hearn is in a tie for 63rd at 2-under par. Burlington native Michael Gilgic failed to make the cut to play Saturday. Scotland's Russell Knox shot the day's low round with a 64 — one stroke off the course record — to join Brian Harman and Emiliano Grillo at 13 under. Finau and Kim both shot 67. Kim was bogey-free, while the streakier Finau bounced back from a double bogey on the 13th with three consecutive birdies. The field played through sparse desert rain in the afternoon. Precipitation finally fell in earnest when the final group reached the 18th hole, with Finau and Kim forced to pull out their umbrellas. Second-round leader Sungjae Im struggled to a 73, leaving him five shots off the lead after four bogeys — including a triple bogey on the ninth after putting two straight shots in the water. First-round leader Brandon Hagy shot a 72 and was even with Im at 10 under. Homa is in prime position for his second career win in his first tournament of the new year. He began the day just three shots off Im's pace at 8 under, and he swiftly closed the gap with four birdies in his first five holes. Homa has 17 birdies in the last two rounds on the Stadium Course. “There’s obviously a handful of very daunting holes, but I’ve been fortunate enough to play here a ton, so I have a pretty good feel for the place,” Homa said. “I’ve been able to put myself in a position to have good looks for birdie, and I’ve been putting great. It’s just something about these greens. It feels like home.” The Burbank-born son of a well-known acting coach put his tee shot in the water and two-putted for that double bogey on the seventh, but Homa made up for it with birdies on five of his next eight holes, including three in a row down the back stretch. Finau put his tee shot in the water on the 13th and then missed a 10-inch putt for double bogey, but the Utah native rebounded with three of his eight birdies on a series of impressive approach shots. Werenski charged into fourth with a round that included six birdies and was highlighted by an eagle on the fifth after an exceptional 224-yard approach shot left him a 4-foot putt. The 29-year-old Massachusetts native is seeking his second PGA Tour win. After going bogey-free through his first 48 holes at The American Express, he finally missed a 10-foot par putt on the 13th before rallying with two more birdies down the stretch “I’ve been giving myself plenty of looks and just haven’t been converting them, and today I finally made some (putts),” Werenski said. “So I think we’re kind of turning the corner.. ... I’ve always liked this place. I’ve never finished really, really high here, but I’ve always known that I could play really good. It just fits my eye.” Australia's Cameron Davis had the shot of the day on the 15th, holing out for eagle from 157 yards away from a section of rough below the fairway. Davis finished the third round at 12-under 204 along with Rory Sabbatini, Chase Seiffert, Francesco Molinari and Doug Ghim. ___ More AP sports: https://apnews.com/hub/sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports Greg Beacham, The Associated Press