Canada in Brief, Nov. 10-16

Trudeau congratulates Trump on US election victory

OTTAWA—Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has offered his congratulations to U.S. president-elect Donald Trump and says he will work with the new administration.

“Canada has no closer friend, partner, and ally than the United States,” Trudeau said in a statement issued Nov. 9.

“We look forward to working very closely with President-elect Trump, his administration, and with the United States Congress in the years ahead, including on issues such as trade, investment, and international peace and security.”

In Montreal, NDP Leader Tom Mulcair refused to take back his prior comments that Trump was a fascist.

“Far from backing down from it, I hope that Justin Trudeau will stand up for those same Canadian values,” he said the morning after the election.

“I think when you see the type of racist, sexist comments that were made by Mr. Trump during the campaign—those are things we don’t want here in Canada.”

Indigenous Canadians remember fallen ancestors, community members

OTTAWA—On Nov. 8, indigenous people across Canada remembered fallen ancestors and community members with prayers and offerings of thanks as they marked National Aboriginal Veterans Day.

It is estimated that more than 12,000 aboriginal people joined the Canadian military during the First and Second World Wars and Korea. More than 500 were killed.

Veterans Affairs Minister Kent Hehr, who laid a wreath during a ceremony at the National Aboriginal Veterans Monument in Ottawa, said more First Nations, Inuit, and Metis served in those wars as a percentage of their total population than any other ethnic group in Canada.

National Aboriginal Veterans Day was first inaugurated by Winnipeg’s city council in 1994, though it is still not officially recognized by the federal government.

Ottawa says orca protection part of $1.5 billion marine protection plan

VICTORIA—The federal government says part of its $1.5 billion ocean protection plan includes new measures to protect British Columbia’s endangered southern resident killer whales.

North Vancouver MP Jonathan Wilkinson, the parliamentary secretary for the minister of environment and climate change, says the government will move to reduce shipping noise and vessel traffic in sensitive orca zones in B.C.’s waters.

Noise from increased shipping traffic, especially oil tankers, has been cited as a threat to whale populations should the federal Liberal government approve oil pipeline projects proposed for the West Coast.

The plan announced by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Monday aims to improve Canada’s ability to respond to oil spills and take measures to protect its oceans.

Two women candidates quit Alberta Progressive Conservative leadership race

EDMONTON—The only two female candidates in the Alberta Progressive Conservative leadership race are calling it quits, one of them citing Trump-style intimidation tactics in the campaign.

Sandra Jansen, a Calgary member of the legislature, said she was harassed at a party policy convention in Red Deer and has been attacked on social media. Jansen said volunteers from another campaign attacked her for speaking up for women’s reproductive rights and children’s rights.

Former Tory cabinet minister Donna Kennedy-Glans said she is also withdrawing from the race because politics in Alberta is polarizing and there is limited opportunity for centrist voices to be heard.

Neither candidate named names, but Jansen said party members should work for a candidate who opposes the “Trump-style politics imported to Alberta from Ottawa.”

Results from plebiscite don’t reflect will of the people: PEI premier

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I.—Premier Wade MacLauchlan says the low turnout for the province’s plebiscite on electoral reform means the results can’t be considered a clear expression of the will of Islanders.

The premier issued a statement saying the results confirm the need for the legislature to “enhance our democracy,” but he did not commit to making any changes to the existing first-past-the-post system, even though it was rejected as the best option.

The non-binding vote, based on a preferential ballot system, found that voters supported a switch to a form of proportional representation.

However, the turnout was only 36 percent, which MacLauchlan says was a poor showing when compared to the 80 percent turnout recorded in nine of the past 10 provincial elections.

Liberals win Yukon election, toppling Yukon Party

WHITEHORSE—The Yukon Liberals have won the territorial election, defeating the long-governing Yukon Party.

Results from Elections Yukon show Liberal Leader Sandy Silver is now premier elect, with his party winning 11 seats in the vote on Monday, Nov. 7, to form a majority government.

Former premier Darrell Pasloski’s Yukon Party—which governed the territory for 14 years—captured six seats, while the NDP won two. Pasloski lost his seat and said in a speech late Monday that he will resign as party leader.

Silver said in his victory speech that his newly elected colleagues are ready to hit the ground running.

With files from The Canadian Press

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