Police declare Pickering death Durham Region's 6th homicide of 2022

WATCH: Police are investigating after a single-vehicle collision in Pickering, Ont., left one person dead. As Morganne Campbell reports, Durham police said officers were called to the Taunton Road area, west of Brock Road Thursday afternoon.

Police in Durham Region have confirmed the the area’s sixth homicide of the year.

The incident involved a man with gunshot wounds who died following a single-vehicle collision.

On May 19, Durham Regional Police were called to the Taunton Road area, west of Brock Road, at around noon for a one-car collision involving a grey four-door Honda.

Investigators said the driver inside the vehicle was pronounced dead on scene and had gunshot wounds.

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Driver found with gunshot injuries dies after single-vehicle collision in Pickering

At the time of the incident, police said the victim’s identity would not be released until after a post-mortem had been conducted.

In an update Monday, police named the victim as Arawin Sapesan, a 20-year-old from Pickering. They declared his death a homicide.

Police are appealing to the public for anyone who may have witnessed what happened or who has dashcam footage in the area of Taunton Road and Brock Road in Pickering between the hours of 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. to help.

Anyone with new information is asked to contact Det. French of the Major Crimes Homicide Unit at 1-888-579-1520 ext. 5421.

— With files from Global News’ Gabby Rodrigues

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Gardiner ramp, section of Yonge Street to close for at least 3 days of emergency repairs

A Gardiner Expressway exit and a section of Yonge Street are expected to be closed for at least three days starting Monday evening as crews complete emergency road work.

The City of Toronto said in a news release Monday that Yonge Street will be closed starting at 7 p.m. between Front Street East and Lake Shore Boulevard East.

The westbound Gardiner Expressway Yonge Street exit will also be closed.

The City said that a “substantial flow of ground water” was discovered under the intersection of Yonge Street and The Esplanade.

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The issue was identified on Saturday by a City contractor who was doing work at the intersection.

“After further investigation and attempts to manage the ground water flow beneath the street, City staff determined excavation of the intersection requiring road closures is needed to locate the source of the water and make critical repairs,” the release said.

“Throughout today, dewatering efforts continue at the site and the location is being monitored by City staff.”

The City said crews are making “every effort” to ensure sidewalks remain open to pedestrians.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Significant damage after fire at London, Ont. chicken-processing plant

London, Ont., fire crews say damage is “substantial” after an early morning blaze at a local chicken-processing plant.

London Fire Department Platoon Chief Kirk Loveland tells 980 CFPL crews were called early Monday morning to Cargill Canada located at 10 Cuddy Blvd.

Crews saw heavy smoke and fire coming out of one area of a building.

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Loveland says crews knocked out the fire, went inside, and extinguished the rest of the fire.

No injuries were reported.

The platoon chief says the cause of the blaze is under investigation, but it does not appear to be suspicious.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Thousands still without power after storm in Ontario, Quebec that left at least 9 dead

WATCH ABOVE: One of the areas hardest hit by the storm was the Ontario township of Uxbridge, which declared a state of emergency. The destruction there is so bad it's fueled speculation that this was more than just an ordinary thunderstorm. Mike Drolet spoke with residents on how the terrifying conditions tore through their homes.

Hundreds of thousands of people remain without power after Saturday’s powerful storm that left at least nine dead and caused extensive damage throughout southern Ontario and Quebec.

Hydro utilities say the damage to the power grid is extensive and complicated, meaning even as crews work around the clock to make repairs, it could still be days before all outages are resolved.

Hydro One reports the number of customers without power in Ontario has dropped a little below 200,000 as of Monday morning, having restored power to more than 380,000 customers.

Read more:

At least 9 dead, thousands without power after severe storm sweeps eastern Canada

Across the provincial border, Hydro-Quebec had around 1,500 outages affecting more than 215,000 customers.

Provincial Energy Minister Jonatan Julien held a last-minute news conference Monday morning, saying the goal is to re-establish power to 80 per cent of people before the end of the day.

Hydro Ottawa said it had restored power to more than 70,000 customers as of mid-morning Monday, while an estimated 110,000 are still without power.

The utility said the damage is significantly worse than the 1998 Ice Storm and the tornadoes of 2018, adding it has brought in crews from as far as the Toronto area and New Brunswick to assist in repairs.

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Uxbridge declares state of emergency in wake of severe damage from Ontario storm

“The level of damage to our distribution system is simply beyond comprehension,” Hydro Ottawa said on Twitter Monday. “We’re managing this from a whole of city perspective given that no single area of the City is unaffected in some manner.”

Hydro-Quebec said the storm left 550,000 customers from Gatineau to Quebec City in the dark at its peak.

“Part of the outages that persist may take longer to fix, due to difficult access conditions, extensive damage to the network and the scale of damage to pick up,” Hydro-Quebec said in a statement Monday, adding that 600 teams had been deployed.

The storm tore through southern Ontario and Quebec in a matter of hours, breaking hydro poles and toppling towers, uprooting trees, and ripping shingles and siding off houses.

Read more:

Destructive storm keeps more than 205,000 Quebec homes in the dark

The total death toll from Saturday’s storm is still unclear, but police in Ontario reported seven people killed by falling trees in locations across the province during the storm Saturday, and an eighth killed by a falling tree branch in the storm’s aftermath on Sunday.

A ninth person died Saturday when the boat she was in capsized on the Ottawa River near Masson-Angers, Que.

The widespread damage prompted the Ontario towns of Uxbridge, north of Toronto, and Clarence-Rockland, east of Ottawa, to declare states of emergency.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in a statement Sunday that the federal government stands ready to provide support if needed.

David Sills, executive director of the Northern Tornadoes Project at Western University, said wind speeds from the storm could have reached much higher than the 132 kilometres an hour measured by Environment and Climate Change Canada, given the concentrated damage.

Teams from the project travelled to the Uxbridge area as well as to southern Ottawa to assess whether they were hit by tornados, but the project issued a tweet on Monday saying it will require a thorough analysis before classifying the event given the complexity of the damage.

© 2022 The Canadian Press

Starbucks exiting Russia after 15 years amid Ukraine invasion

Carleton University Business Professor Ian Lee talks about the pressure some multinational companies are facing to boycott Russia.

Starbucks Corp said on Monday it will exit the Russian market after nearly 15 years as the coffee chain joins McDonald’s Corp in marking the end of the presence of some of the top Western brands in the country.

Seattle-based Starbucks has 130 stores in Russia, operated by its licensee Alshaya Group, with nearly 2,000 employees in the country.

Starbucks’ decision to wind down its operation in Russia is different to the approach some other foreign companies have taken.

McDonald’s last week said it was selling its restaurants in Russia to its local licensee Alexander Govor to be rebranded under a new name, but will retain its trademarks, while France’s Renault is selling its majority stake in Russia’s biggest carmaker with an option to buy back the stake.

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Will there be a ‘tipping point’ for Putin as businesses exit Russia? Experts doubt it

A slew of other Western companies, including Imperial Brands and Shell, are cutting ties with the Russia market by agreeing to sell their assets in the country or handing them over to local managers.

In March, Starbucks shuttered its stores and suspended all business activity in Russia, including the shipment of its products to the country, following Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.

The company, which opened its first outlet in Russia in 2007, said it will continue to support its employees there, including paying them for six months.

Starbucks did not provide details on the financial impact of the exit. McDonald’s had said it would take a primarily non-cash charge of up to $1.4 billion.

(Reporting by Deborah Sophia in Bengaluru; Editing by Louise Heavens and Shounak Dasgupta)

© 2022 Reuters

Monkeypox could spread through sexual contact, but it’s not an STI: WHO adviser

WATCH: Monkeypox is not a sexually-transmitted infection, WHO says

Monkeypox is not a sexually-transmitted infection exclusive to men who have sex with men, a World Health Organization (WHO) official said Monday to combat stigma and discrimination.

While the world is seeing some cases among that group, anyone can get monkeypox through close contact with an infected person, said Andy Seale, an adviser to the World Health Organization’s Global HIV, Hepatitis and STIs programs.

“It seems clear that this is linked to close contact. This could be through social contact, possibly through sexual contact, which of course is close contact (but) we’re still in the early days of this outbreak so there’s a lot we’re still learning,” said Seale during a virtual question-and-answer event.

“While we’re seeing some cases among men who have sex with men, this is not a gay disease as some people on social media have attempted to label it. Anybody can contract monkeypox through close contact.”

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Monkeypox spread ‘unusual’ but risk to Canadians is ‘low,’ officials say

The world also needs to know monkeypox is not a sexually-transmitted infection, Seale added.

“You can get a cough or cold through sexual contact, but that doesn’t mean it’s a sexually-transmitted disease. Typically, you need an exchange of vaginal fluids or semen that has an element of contagion to it to transmit the disease,” he said.

“The difference is that a sexually-transmitted infection is caused by sexual intercourse, anal intercourse, vaginal intercourse, or oral sex.”

Recent cases of monkeypox around the world have researchers scrambling to find out how the virus is spreading in countries that typically don’t see it. Monkeypox is usually found in certain parts of Africa, where it is endemic.

At least five cases have been confirmed in Canada and investigators are working to identify more.

On Friday, Canada’s chief public health officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, said under a “couple dozen of people” were under investigation for monkeypox in the country.

Monkeypox is an orthopoxvirus that typically transmits to humans from animals. It usually causes fever, chills, rash and lesions on the face or genitals.

Among humans, it can be spread through close contact with an infected person or their clothing or bedsheets, but sexual transmission has not yet been documented.

Most people recover from monkeypox within a few weeks without requiring hospitalization. Vaccines against smallpox, a related disease, are helpful in preventing monkeypox, and some antiviral drugs are being developed.

Read more:

Monkeypox likely spread through sex at 2 raves in Europe, expert suggests

In an interview with The Associated Press, Dr. David Heymann, former head of the WHO’s emergencies department, said the leading theory to explain the recent spread of monkeypox in Europe was sexual contact among men who have sex with men at two raves held in Spain and Belgium.

“It’s very possible there was somebody who got infected, developed lesions on the genitals, hands or somewhere else, and then spread it to others when there was sexual or close, physical contact,” Heymann said.

“And then there were these international events that seeded the outbreak around the world, into the U.S. and other European countries.”

As cases began to be identified in men who have sex with men, health officials urged the public not to rush to conclusions as monkeypox is not exclusive to one certain group.

“The community of men who have sex with men has been historically incredibly stigmatized with relation to virus infection, so I want to be very careful to say that that link has not been finalized yet,” Angela Rasmussen, a virologist with the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization at the University of Saskatchewan, told Global News on Thursday.

Health officials have been describing what they’ve been learning as they’re investigating monkeypox, and it’s not meant to discriminate one group, said Dr. Rosamund Lewis, head smallpox secretariat with the WHO Emergencies Programme.

“It’s not about discrimination, it’s not about stigma, it’s about where are you seeing the first cases,” she said on Monday.

“Where is it spreading now and how is it spreading now? These are questions we ask ourselves during an outbreak investigation.”

To date, the WHO has recorded more than 90 cases of monkeypox in a dozen countries including Britain, Spain, Israel, France, Switzerland, the U.S. and Australia.

In developed countries with advanced health-care systems, monkeypox can be contained, said Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove, technical lead for COVID-19 at the WHO.

“But we can’t take our eye off the ball of what’s happening in Africa and endemic countries,” she said Monday.

“So this gives us an opportunity to talk about what monkeypox is, what it isn’t, so you can be very well informed.”

— with files from The Associated Press

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Montreal police investigate after 2 pedestrians injured in downtown car collision

Montreal police are investigating after two pedestrians were injured in a collision with a car in the city’s downtown core Monday.

Police const. Raphaël Bergeron said an 83-year-old man was struck by a driver heading southbound on Côte-des-Neiges Road around 9 a.m. near the intersection of Guy and Sherbrooke streets.

The man was taken to hospital with head injuries. Bergeron said he was conscious at the time.

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City says improving road safety in Montreal remains vital after pedestrian dragged by school bus

A woman in her 80s also fell to the ground but was not struck by the vehicle, according to police. She suffered minor injuries.

Police are treating the collision as an accident at the moment. Bergeron said it appears the “pedestrians were probably crossing facing a red light.”

Investigators remain at the scene.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

'I would like us to not be forgotten': Ontario election breeds hope, skepticism in Far North

WATCH ABOVE: (May 21) With less than two weeks to go until the election, Ontario party leaders are focusing on gun laws, healthcare, housing and farmland. Ahmar Khan reports.

Susanna Baxter says she has lived a life full of barriers.

Limited access to health care, poor education, trouble accessing clean drinking water and overcrowded housing are just some of the issues she says she experienced growing up in Marten Falls First Nation, a remote community in Ontario’s Far North.

Amid those challenges, the 34-year-old says she also witnessed what she calls a lack of action from various governments.

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“The only time we get some kind of help is when we call a state of emergency,” she says. “We have to scream it from the freakin’ rooftops before we get any kind of help.”

As she looks to Ontario’s election on June 2, Baxter hopes the new government will wholeheartedly support the residents of the Far North, a vast region that covers more than a third of the province’s land mass.

“I would like to have us not be forgotten,” says the single mother of three. “I feel like that’s how I’ve felt my whole life and I don’t want my children forgotten.”

Baxter and other residents of the region say they’d like to see the Far North prioritized, with attention paid to the cost of living, food insecurity, limited health services and housing.

Groceries alone cost between $400 and $600 every two weeks for her family, says Baxter, which means she lives paycheque to paycheque as she works at the community’s health centre.

“And the things that are sent up, sometimes they’re not the freshest,” she says.

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Advocates call for health-care improvements ahead of Ontario election

If she or her children require dental care or have a health complication, Baxter says they’re looking at a journey all the way to Geraldton, Ont., located more than 200 kilometres away.

Wayne Taipale, mayor of the town of Moosonee, located nearly 20 kilometres south of James Bay, says he feels the Far North has often been ignored.

He noted that the NDP legislator for the northern Mushkegowuk–James Bay riding made “quite a few” trips to the region over the last few years but he wants to see the other political parties take similar initiative.

“It just seems like the other ? parties that are running, they forget that Ontario’s further north than just North Bay and Sudbury,” he says in an interview.

Lack of infrastructure in the region is largely to blame for the limited access to goods and services in the Far North, says Livio Di Matteo, an economics professor at Lakehead University and a senior fellow at the Fraser Institute.

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“These are remote communities. You can’t just drive there an hour or two down the 401. You often have to fly there in a very small aircraft,” he says. “Even if you wanted to build houses, the winter is the time where you could actually use the seasonal roads to bring in the building materials.”

Di Matteo says this makes it a “much more involved” and “expensive” process to provide the infrastructure for things like housing, amenities and high-speed internet to improve the standard of living in the region and make it attractive for health-care and education workers to go work there.

Bruce Achneepineskum, the chief of Marten Falls First Nation, says a lack of adequate accommodations for teachers has meant the children of his community have been out of school since September because there’s no one physically present to teach them.

“This wouldn’t be tolerated anyplace else in Canada,” he says.

For years, the province has made promises to develop and mine the Ring of Fire, an area in the Far North that’s located about 500 kilometres northeast of Thunder Bay and said to be rich in critical minerals. It has also touted the benefits of the all-season road that would be built for the project, which would improve access to goods and services in the Far North and connect communities in the region.

The Progressive Conservatives, who are seeking re-election, as well as the Liberals and the NDP have all made campaign promises to move ahead with the Ring of Fire project. But regardless of which party is elected, it’s required to consult with the First Nations that would be affected by the project, including Webequie and Marten Falls.

The two First Nations announced in April that they were co-leading the planning of a Northern Road Link project, which the province has said is the final piece of critical road infrastructure for the Ring of Fire development.

Achneepineskum says he sees hope in the project, but he also wants it to be done right.

The chief notes that previous government policies, including the residential school system, have had “devastating consequences” for First Nations, with poverty, low education rates and high incarceration rates running rampant in those communities.

“It’s a result of all these pieces of legislation that have alienated us from our lands and our resources,” he says.

With the Ring of Fire development, Achneepineskum says his priority is ensuring the project involves First Nations throughout _ from the planning stages to when revenue starts to flow in.

“(It’s) our ancestral lands,” he says. “We’re looking to protect those lands and resources, with all aspects, be it environment, be it resource and revenue sharing, be it how environmental assessments are conducted, be it industry players and working with governments to ensure that we have greater prosperity for First Nations also.”

Achneepineskum says he hopes First Nation communities and the new provincial government can work on building strong partnerships in the future.

“We hope to have more tables where we can have meaningful dialogue, partnership, not only consultation, but actual partnerships with government,” he says.

Baxter’s message to the political parties vying for public office is simple: “Keep us in mind. And not just when you’re running.”

© 2022 The Canadian Press

19-year-old dead after single-vehicle crash in Shediac Cape, N.B.

A young man was killed and another was injured following a single-vehicle crash in Shediac Cape on Sunday night.

Cpl. Brian Villers with the Shediac RCMP said emergency personnel responded to the crash on Route 134 shortly after 10 p.m.

“The call came in as a vehicle in a ditch on its roof,” said Villers. “There were two occupants, and the deceased was the passenger.”

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2 killed in New Brunswick crash involving car, school bus

The person who died was 19, he said.

Police are still investigating the cause of the crash, though Villers said impairment by alcohol or drugs is believed to be a factor.

The driver was transported to hospital by ambulance with injuries. Villers said he was in hospital overnight but did not have an update on his condition Monday.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Has the Commonwealth 'run its course?' Platinum Jubilee raises questions on future

Sunday, February 6, 2022 marks 70 years since Queen Elizabeth took the throne following the death of her father, King George VI. We take a look back at the past seven decades, and look forward at the celebrations still to come.

As Queen Elizabeth II celebrates her 70th year on the throne, there are questions about whether the Commonwealth of Nations has a future when her reign is over.

The Commonwealth evolved out of the British empire, and Elizabeth became its head in 1952 when she became queen, three years after the London Declaration formally created the voluntary association in its current form.

Now it is one of world’s biggest international organizations, made up of 54 countries, almost all of which were former colonies of the United Kingdom, covering some 2.5 billion people or about one third of the world’s population.

The 96-year-old queen has always been at its heart, but there are suggestions it has already become outdated and irrelevant.

“I think perhaps the Commonwealth has historically run its course,” said Philip Murphy, professor of British and Commonwealth History at the University of London. “And what you’re really seeing now is the ghost of an organization.”

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Commonwealth members range from wealthy nations such as Britain, Australia, New Zealand and Canada – who still all have the queen as their head of state – to populous India, as well as tiny Pacific republics such as Nauru.

Supporters say it provides a network to foster international cooperation and trade links, with a focus on promoting democracy and development, and addressing issues such as climate change.

So when Barbados cut its ties with the British monarchy last year when the Caribbean nation became a republic, it was keen to remain part of the Commonwealth.

“The Commonwealth is beneficial to many Caribbean nations as well as many African nations and it links us into countries like Australia and New Zealand and Canada,” said Barbados-based David Denny, general secretary for the Caribbean Movement for Peace and Integration, a non-government organization.

The organization was regarded as playing a significant role in helping to end apartheid in South Africa, and Murphy says it has uses for smaller, less powerful members. But he remains unconvinced of its wider benefit.

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“The Commonwealth talks about the importance of promoting democracy, tackling climate change, tackling gender inequality,” he told Reuters. “But the Commonwealth isn’t necessarily a logical framework internationally in which to deal with any of those problems.”

Where the organization could have a role, Murphy says, is in dealing with the legacy of the British empire and colonialism, with a new purpose of dealing with issues such as reparation and restitution

“We were massacred and killed for the economic development of Britain,” Denny said.

“The nation states within the Commonwealth should demand reparation for that sufferation from the royal family, from the British government, all of the British companies that would have benefited from slavery and the exploitation of our African people throughout the Commonwealth nation states.”

Another question the organization will have to address is who will lead it, with Denny arguing it should not be the British royals, despite Commonwealth leaders agreeing in 2018 that Elizabeth’s son and heir Prince Charles should be her successor although the role is not hereditary.

Charles’s eldest son Prince William, after a difficult tour of the Caribbean nations earlier this year when he faced protests, calls for reparations and an apology for slavery, suggested he might not get the job.

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“Who the Commonwealth chooses to lead its family in the future isn’t what is on my mind,” said William. “What matters to us is the potential the Commonwealth family has to create a better future for the people who form it, and our commitment to serve and support as best we can.”

However, in the meantime, there is no question of the importance of the organization to its current head.

“Today, it is rewarding to observe a modern, vibrant and connected Commonwealth that combines a wealth of history and tradition with the great social, cultural and technological advances of our time,” Queen Elizabeth said in her annual message to the Commonwealth in March.

“That the Commonwealth stands ever taller is a credit to all who have been involved.”

Murphy said he suspected it would survive, but with even less attention that it attracts now.

“I think it will stagger on,” he said. “I don’t see the will to draw a line under it, and I don’t see who would really have the authority to do that. I think the danger is that it will just gradually become less influential, less important and less interesting to its citizens.”

© 2022 Reuters

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