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Opposition questions PMO motives on Duffy

Opposition balks at PMO resistance to Harper testifying at Duffy trial
Terry Pedwell, The Canadian Press

OTTAWA - The opposition says it is startled by the insistence by the Prime Minister's Office that there's little chance Stephen Harper will have to testify at Sen. Mike Duffy's criminal trial.

"It's remarkable that the prime minister's office has decided that they would comment on this matter before the courts when they normally do not comment on matters before the courts," Liberal MP Geoff Regan told an Ottawa news conference.

Broadcaster Bill Stephenson dead at 85

Hall of Fame Canadian sports broadcaster Bill Stephenson dead at age 85
The Canadian Press

TORONTO - Hall of Fame sports broadcaster Bill Stephenson, who spent several decades on Canadian radio and television, has died. He was 85.

Newstalk 1010 in Toronto, where Stephenson worked for many years when the station was known as CFRB, says he died Tuesday night.

Born in Elrose, Sask., Stephenson started his radio career in his early 20s at CJAV in Port Alberni, B.C., before moving to Victoria's CKDA and Vancouver's CKWX.

Egypt judge: Al-Jazeera team did 'devil's' work

Canadian-Egyptian journalist, Al-Jazeera colleagues did the 'devil's' job:judge
Sarah El Deeb, The Associated Press

CAIRO - An Egyptian judge released his reasoning for harsh sentences issued against three Al-Jazeera journalists, including an Egyptian-Canadian, saying they were brought together "by the devil" to destabilize the country.

Fox falls asleep aboard Ottawa city bus

Fox gets famous after photographed sleeping aboard Ottawa city bus
The Canadian Press

OTTAWA - A fox that snuck onto an Ottawa city bus has achieved temporary Internet fame after photos of the critter sleeping on a seat circulated online.

OC Transpo says the fox climbed through the open front door of an out-of-service bus parked at one of its garages Sunday morning and quickly settled in for a nap.

It says an employee called police, which alerted the Humane Society, but the fox eventually took off on its own.

Police try to stop sale of Lac-Megantic engine

Quebec police try to prevent U.S. auction of Lac-Megantic locomotive
Andy Blatchford, The Canadian Press

MONTREAL - Quebec provincial police say they've taken steps to prevent the auction of the locomotive that played a key role in the deadly Lac-Megantic rail disaster.

A spokeswoman for the force said Wednesday that investigators initiated measures to block a U.S. auction house from selling the locomotive until the end of legal proceedings.

Charities may be asked for donor lists

Charities may be asked for donor lists under CRA proposal floated by minister
Dean Beeby, The Canadian Press

OTTAWA - Canadian charities would have to turn over lists of their donors' identities to the Canada Revenue Agency under a proposal being floated by the Conservative government.

The move is touted as a way to prevent tax-receipt fraud, but some charities are wary of the administrative burden — and the potential close surveillance of groups that criticize government policies.

Revenue Minister Kerry-Lynne Findlay made the suggestion behind closed doors this spring to charities officials in Ottawa as the government seeks ways to tighten regulation of Canada's charitable sector.

Tyrannosaur a team player? B.C. fossils say yes

Fossil footprints found in northern B.C. paint a new picture of tyrannosaur
Dene Moore, The Canadian Press

VANCOUVER - They were the king of the carnivores that ruled the Earth 70 million years ago but maybe tyrannosaurs were friendlier than their reputations have allowed.

A trio of fossilized footprint tracks discovered near Tumbler Ridge, in northeastern British Columbia, offer compelling evidence that the beasts were not solitary but travelled in packs.

The footprints were found by a local guide outfitter in October 2011.

Courtroom outburst in Loretta Saunders case

Courtroom outburst during preliminary hearing in Loretta Saunders case
The Canadian Press

HALIFAX - Four sheriffs had to restrain a man in Halifax provincial court Wednesday after he lunged in the direction of two people accused in the death of Loretta Saunders.

The scuffle broke out shortly after Judge Anne Derrick left the courtroom for a brief break following testimony on the third day of a preliminary hearing.

Create jobs by running deficits, Ottawa urged

Oliver rejects report calling for spending to create jobs, less focus on deficit
Julian Beltrame, The Canadian Press

OTTAWA - Finance Minister Joe Oliver is rejecting a recommendation from a report issued by the C.D. Howe Institute that he focus more on creating jobs than eliminating a tiny deficit.

The report by McMaster University economics professor William Scarth argues that keeping the deficit at 0.5 per cent of GDP for the next three years could lower the unemployment rate by 0.4 per cent, or create the equivalent of 75,000 additional jobs.

Baird maligns UN human rights council on Gaza

Baird maligns UN human rights council on Gaza resolution, defends Israel
The Canadian Press

OTTAWA - Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird is once again maligning the United Nations, accusing its human rights council of singling out Israel and making no mention of Hamas in its resolution on the Gaza conflict.

The United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) voted 29-1 on Wednesday to authorize an international commission of inquiry to investigate all alleged abuses since mid-June in the Gaza Strip.

The U.S. was the only opposing vote. Canada is not a member of the UNHRC.

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