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first_imgOTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recommends any Canadians worried about his government’s deficits to look at the country’s strong standing with international credit-rating agencies for reassurance.Speaking to The Canadian Press in a wide-ranging interview, Trudeau says Canada’s triple-A rating with agencies like Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s should provide comfort to taxpayers who fear his government has been accumulating too much debt.Trudeau says Canada’s long-running triple-A rating means experts have confidence in his government’s approach to the economy — even though many critics, and especially the Conservatives, warn Ottawa should be curbing deficit-spending in a stronger-than-expected economy.Asked about the next inevitable downturn or recession, Trudeau argues his government’s moves to boost immigration and to make investments in areas like skills training, public transit and a lower-carbon economy have made Canada more resilient against future shocks.The Trudeau Liberals were elected in 2015 on a pledge to run modest annual shortfalls of no more than $10 billion and to balance the books by 2019. Instead, they have posted yearly deficits almost double that size and no longer have a timetable to return to balance.After taking office, the Trudeau government shifted its focus to keeping the government’s debt burden on a downward track — and Trudeau says Ottawa will stick to that benchmark in the future.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

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first_imgHetherington’s idea of installing a roundabout is not a new one. Global News is reporting that calls to install the traffic control device are increasing in Saskatchewan, citing a 2013 crash along the Trans-Canada Highway east of Regina that killed 17-year-old boy.This Saturday, Hetherington will also be raising money for the town Humboldt at her store, Marcy’s Bright Ideas. She says that everything in the store will be 25 percent off, with 10 percent of sales being sent directly to the Mayor of Humboldt, along with a letter of support.With files from CBC News and Global Regina:http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatoon/scene-of-broncos-crash-haunted-sask-truckers-for-decades-1.4612253 In June 1997, Hetherington’s sister, Terri Lynne Fiddler, her husband Rod Fiddler, their three children; 4-year-old Jocelyn, 3-year-old Jasmine, and four-week-old Kassandre, were traveling eastbound on Highway 335 with Rod’s 26-year-old sister Wendy Lou on their way to Carrot River, southeast of Nipawin, Saskatchewan. While approaching the intersection with Highway 35, the pickup truck they were travelling in ran through a stop sign and collided with a southbound semi, before ending up in the ditch and bursting into flames. Rod Fiddler with his children, left to right, Jocelyn and Jasmine, and wife Terri. Kassandre, who was one month old in the crash, is not pictured. Photo by CBC NewsHetherington said that after the crash, in which the driver of the semi was found not at fault, her mother was told by a member of the Saskatchewan government of the day that safety improvements including rumble strips would be installed along Highway 335 to warn motorists of the upcoming stop sign. She added that while a flashing red light was installed above the stop sign, those rumble strips were never put in. After finding out several years ago and asking why the rumble strips weren’t installed, Hetherington said she got an explanation that she says isn’t good enough. “They said that because what they pave the road with, when the snowplows plow in the winter it will ruin the rumble strips, which I do not believe” said Hetherington. “Aren’t rumble strips dug in?”Hetherington explained that since she found out about the April 6th crash which killed 16 members of the Humboldt Broncos, she’s decided to take action to help ensure the intersection is made safer and claims no more lives.“I’m speaking out now because those people should’ve never gone through this. When I heard about this accident, I’m like ‘that’s it.’ That’s negligence by the Saskatchewan government. That is total neglect. I ask, ‘Why is this not done?’ They don’t give an answer. But I am going to hound them until this gets done.”Footage from Global Regina of a collision reconstruction that was conducted at the intersection of Highway 35 and Highway 335 in Sakatchewen. Photo by Global Regina.Hetherington pointed out footage shot by Global News at the scene of the April 6th crash which shows a number of road signs cluttering the same field of view as the stop sign, which she says is unsafe. She also wants to see the speed limit lowered on Highway 335 since it is a secondary road, and added that the best solution would be to turn the intersection into a roundabout.  FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — Though it’s been nearly 21 years since a crash at a rural Saskatchewan intersection involving a pickup truck and tractor-trailer claimed the lives of six members of her family, Marcy Hetherington says she still remembers the sadness to this day.Her sadness, however, turned to anger two weeks ago when a crash involving a semi-truck and a bus claimed the lives of 16 members of the Humboldt Broncos Junior hockey – anger that’s now fuelling a crusade against the government she says could have done more to prevent the second tragedy.The wreckage of a fatal crash outside of Tisdale, Sask. A bus carrying the Humboldt Broncos hockey team crashed into a truck en route to a game. Photo by Jonathan Hayward/The Canadian Presscenter_img https://globalnews.ca/news/4156114/highway-roundabouts-alberta-humboldt-broncos-bus-crash/last_img read more

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first_imgThe Ball was an evening of dinner and dance as well as a live and silent auction and raffles.The funds raised will go to supporting local people through the Fire Fighters Charitable Society’s Medical Travel Program and burn survivors in B.C. and the Yukon. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Fort St. John Firefighters Charitable Society held their 11th Annual Fireman’s Charity Ball on Saturday at the Pomeroy Hotel & Conference Centre.According to Brent Morgan, of the Charitable Society, the Ball was a great event, raising just over $70,000 from sponsors and attendees.“It went over great once again, we’ve always got a great community sponsor and support behind us for this. It was sold out within three weeks before the Ball. There were about 320 people that attended the event and we raised just over $70,000.”last_img read more

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first_imgTaroudant, Morocco- The court of Nador announced Friday morning that the verdict in the case, known as the “kiss of Nador” will be pronounced on December 6. “After a new hearing that lasted more than two hours, the judge stated that the judgment would be delivered on December 6,” said AFP.The teenagers from the northeastern city of Nador were arrested on Oct. 3 for “violating public decency” by posting a photo of them kissing, and were held at a juvenile detention center before they were released on bail on Oct. 7. The detention of the three teens stirred controversy with a majority of Moroccans calling for their release and urging the government to focus on fighting corruption and providing employment opportunities to the youth.Two days after the preliminary hearing, the international hacktivist group led a campaign in the social media Twitter where they bombarded Moroccan government Twitter accounts with tweets using the hashtag  #NadorKiss.© Morocco World News. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, rewritten or redistributedlast_img read more

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first_imgAmman- The criminal court in Amman on Sunday sentenced two Jordanian men to death for killing their sister in June “to cleanse the family’s honour,” a court official said.“The two men, aged 23 and 20, took their divorced sister, also in her twenties, to the garden of their house and strangled her in June 2013,” in Zarqa, a city northeast of Amman, the official told AFP.“They confessed to killing their sister, who worked in a kindergarten after suspecting that she had behaved badly,” the official said without elaborating. “They said that they wanted to cleanse the family’s honor,” the official added.Murder is punishable by death in Jordan, but in “honor killings” courts usually commute or reduce sentences if the victim’s family requests leniency.Maximum punishment“For the first time in several years, the family of the victim refused to ask the court for leniency, demanding the maximum punishment,” another court official told AFP without giving further details.Between 15 and 20 women die in so-called “honor” murders each year in the kingdom, despite government efforts to curb such crimes.A study by Cambridge University’s Institute of Criminology in June said many Jordanian teenagers believe killing a daughter, sister or wife who has “dishonored” or shamed the family is justified.last_img read more

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Rabat – A 3.8 magnitude tremor was felt Thursday in the province of Ifrane, the National Geophysical Institute said.The epicenter of the quake, which occurred at 5:13 p.m., was located in the town Dayat Aoua, the same source said in a statement. On Tuesday morning, a 4.9 magnitude quake hit the same province.

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Marrakech- The Moroccan royal gendarmerie arrested, Tuesday in Marrakech, a soldier suspected of having a relationship with the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS), according to Al Sabah in its weekend edition.The authorities arrested the soldier, who works for the Ibn Guerir military base, during the ongoing military exercises known as “Mount Desert,” conducted by the Royal Armed Forces and its British counterpart in Bermram in the outskirts of Marrakech.The soldier was an officer participating in the “Mount Desert” military exercise, added the daily news. The daily said that, before taking part in the military exercise, the suspect suffered from mental problems, which pushed his hierarchy to authorize him to have leave.But, he authorities were informed that, while the soldier was on leave, he appeared in Afghan clothes with a beard.As soon as he allegedly recovered and returned to work, his superiors watched him closely, and then caught him making contact with ISIS.According to Al Sabah, the soldier was caught making a phone call to ISIS. He was arrested and taken to the regional headquarters of the Royal Gendarmerie in Marrakech for an investigation into the circumstances behind the call.Edited by Timothy Filla read more

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Rabat – The General Directorate of National Security (DSGN) will be deploying 50,000 police officers in the days leading up to Christmas to improve Morocco’s safety preparedness, according to an anonymous security source cited by Alyoum24.The cities of Rabat, Sale, Marrakesh and Fez will be visited by travelling police teams, who will be provided 1,200 small-sized cars and various security tools to allow for the effective arrest of criminal suspects.Abdel-Latif Hammouchi, who heads the DGSN, said he will be recruiting new officers to be a part of canine search teams, bomb detection squads and other specialized police task forces over the next year. The groups will be deployed to border areas, major cities and other regions of interest to Morocco’s growing number of international tourists. The kingdom’s biggest cities attract thousands of Moroccans and foreigners during the Christmas and New Year’s holidays.Hammouchi added that the Mohammed V Airport in Casablanca also needed upgrades for its baggage scanners, as well as facial recognition capabilities for the facility’s security cameras.The new emphasis on Christmas security comes as Europe carries out a manhunt for the attacker who drove a truck into a Christmas market in Berlin earlier this week. Twelve people died and dozens were injured in the attack, for which the so-called “Islamic State” claimed responsibility on Wednesday.”Morocco condemns in the strongest terms the cowardly terrorist act, perpetrated last Monday against a Christmas market in downtown Berlin, causing several deaths and dozens of innocent victims,” said the Moroccan Foreign Ministry said yesterday. read more

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Rabat – Qatar Airways will hold a cabin crew recruitment event in on May 13 at La Tour Hassan Palace hotel in Rabat.The international airline is looking to expand their cabin crew team by recruiting new candidates enthusiastic about flying. Eligible candidates must be at least 21 years old, fluent in spoken and written English, and hold at least a high school education. In addition to interpersonal skills and the ability to work with a multinational team, applicants must also be in good health and physical condition. ”Known for our 5 star hospitality, we look for future Cabin Crew who can be part of our World Class Global Brand,” said the international airline in a press release. read more

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Rabat – Low- and medium-high technology products make up 80 percent of Moroccan manufacturing exports, says the Directorate of Financial Studies and Forecasting (DEPF), based on statistics produced over the past 15 years.Technological development is being seen as a key factor in improving a country’s productivity, competitiveness, and growth. Since the 1980s, the increase in technological innovations, along with the influx of new entrants into world markets, has exacerbated competition between  economies. From now on, the position of any country in the world economy depends on its capacity to innovate and invent.Faced with this new global economic environment, Morocco has embarked on a process of structural transformation in order to support its technological competitiveness, implementing appropriate sectoral policies and promoting of internationally oriented professions. These ambitious sectoral strategies have reinforced the emergence of growth-oriented businesses which, moreover, have contributed significantly to the modernization of the national industrial fabric and to the strengthening of the technological content of its exports. According to the DEFP, the technological content of Moroccan manufacturing exports has improved considerably over the last fifteen years, following their structural transformation.“The share of the former has fallen by 22.4 percent to 37 percent in 2015, against 59.5 percent in 2000, in favor of the share of medium-high-tech second-hand which increased, continuously over the period by 28 percent, reaching 46.2 percent at the end of 2015, compared with 18.2 percent in 2000,” noted the DEPF in a recent publication on “The technological content of Morocco’s manufacturing exports: evolution and comparative analysis.”According to the DEPF, which operates under the Ministry of Economy and Finance, the share of manufactured products with medium-high technology has increased from 23 percent on average over the period 2000-2007 to 40.7 percent over the 2008-2015 period, thus exceeding the world average which is establish at 34.4 percent.This change was mainly due to the increase in the share of phosphate exports, from 11 percent of Morocco’s total exports to 17 percent between the two periods, as well as that of vehicles from 0 to 5 percent and electric appliances equipment from 6 to 11 percent, explained the DEPF, noting that Morocco’s market share of medium-high-tech products has doubled from 0.08 to 0.16 percent.In the case of exports of high-tech manufactured goods, the share of imports declined from an average of 10.2 percent between 2000 and 2007 to 6.1 percent in the second period, compared with 24.9 percent and 22.4 percent worldwide. However, the DEPF asserted that, despite a downward trend, the share of low-tech products remained high, standing at around 41.3 percent on average between 2008 and 2015, compared with 16 percent at the global level.This decline, the publication explains, is attributed to a 20 percent decline in the manufactured clothing sector of total Moroccan exports on average over the period 2000-2007, to 11 percent on average over the period 2008-2015.For medium- and low-technology products, consisting mainly of residual petroleum products and miscellaneous iron and steel products, their share remained relatively low compared to the world average, with only 11.9 percent compared with 27.2 percent at the global level between 2008 and 2015. The DEPF reports concludes by noting that exports from the manufacturing sector account for 64.4 percent of the total Moroccan exports. In 2015, this sector generated an added value of more than MAD 154 billion at current prices, which constitutes more than 15.7 percent of the GDP. read more

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Rabat – Regional road 408 will be extended by 38 kilometres between Taounate and Ouazzane in northern Morocco.The province’s governor, Hassan Belhadfa, launched the 18-month, MAD 80 million project on Thursday, June 1.The Road Fund (CFR) will finance the project under the Ministry of Equipment, Transport, Logistics and Water. The reinforcement of the road between 136 and 174 kilometres will enhance the accessibility of the road network, improving the living conditions of people living in isolated areas.The new roadwork will create access to three communes in the Taounate province: Mezroua, Jbabra and Ouertzagh.The whole road network across the province will be upgraded by 2022, by which time over MAD 1.06 billion will have been invested into the project. The total length of the roads in the Taounate province is 1,240 kilometres. read more

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Rabat – Moroccan authorities have made six arrests in connection with Thursday’s evening shooting, in which one was killed and two were injured at La Créme café in Marrakech.The arrests took place between Thursday evening and Friday morning in Casablanca, according to a statement issued by the General Directorate of National Security (DGSN). The shooter’s identity has also been determined by the police, who said they are intensifying their search operations. The assailant was already sought by the national authorities for charges of money laundering, extortion and international drug trafficking. The search operation for the main suspect, and any other parties involved in the crime, is still under way.According to the DGSN, determining the motive behind the shooting and the involvement of the victims is a top priority. According to the preliminary investigations, the shooting was an act of “settling scores” in connection with an international drug trafficking network. The statement added that this network is also involved in similar crimes in other European countries.An Evening ShootingOn Thursday evening, two armed masked suspects opened fire on the cafe’s terrace, killing one victim and severely wounding two others. The suspects fled the scene immediately after the shooting at about 7:45 p.m. local time, using a T-Max motorcycle.Moroccan media have reported that the victim was named Hamza Chaib, a 26-year old medical student, whose father is a highly placed judge in the city of Beni Mellal. A second victim, also a medical student, is now hospitalized in Marrakech’s clinic. The third victim was a waiter at the cafe.The preliminary search operation conducted immediately after the act resulted in the discovery of the motorcycle, firearm, and bullets used in the crime. The attackers abandoned them in an empty lot before setting them on fire, according to the DGSN. Head of Government Saad Eddine El Othmani took to his Twitter account after the incident, saying that the DGSN managed to arrest the shooters. His tweet was immediately relayed by many news outlets, who announced the arrest of the suspects. But 34 minutes later, El Othmani posted another tweet saying that authorities were still looking for the suspects. read more

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MILAN — Italian luxury sports car maker Ferrari says profits last year rose 46 per cent, driven by a surge in V12 sales and vehicle personalization.Ferrari on Thursday reported 2018 net profit of 787 million euros ($904 million), up from 537 million euros the previous year. Shipments rose 10 per cent to 9,251 vehicles, while net revenues were flat at 3.4 billion euros.Ferrari set a forecast for 3-per cent revenue growth to over 3.5 billion euros. It did not provide a shipment forecast.Sales of 12-cylinder models surged 20 per cent, led by the 812 Superfast, while sales of 8-cylinder models rose 8 per cent. Sales rose across the globe, with double-digit increases posted in Europe and greater China.The carmaker said fourth-quarter profits rose 40 per cent to 191 million euros.The Associated Press read more

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By Zakaria WadghiriRabat – In Morocco, new and amended laws become effective the moment they are publicly announced in the official gazette. The general secretariat of the government (SGG) publishes laws and legal notices in the Official Gazette, known in French as Le Bulletin Officiel.The national printing office provides a print edition, available only in Rabat at L’imprimerie Officielle, and the SGG an online version.   The Official Gazette is published in four editions: a general edition for laws, decrees, treaties, and other decisions in Arabic, sometimes translated into French; a weekly legal notices edition of judicial and administrative affairs in Arabic; a weekly record of the debates of the House of Representatives in Arabic; and a general semi-monthly edition with French translation.Subscribers can receive the paper version by mail, but it can take up to one month after the publication date to receive it. Problems with the digital versionThe website gives direct and free access to all official gazettes since the first issue, whether in French or Arabic, and the site is regularly updated. Moroccan lawyer Zineb Laraqui, who has worked extensively on these issues, explained to MWN that “not all the laws are translated into French, a regular language of business in Morocco. In addition, investors using English as a business language will find there is no official translation into English.” Only the first, general edition for laws in Arabic and French (when it is translated) is online.Language barriers aside, the inability to search the online pdfs is a major hindrance to finding the right information on the gazette, according to the Marrakech-based lawyer and co-founder of online platform jurisprudence.ma.  Because the PDFs in the website are not plain-text documents but scanned versions of the printed publication, users have to look for information page by page. Users sometimes find missing pages. On the international conventions page, the links for some pages return 404 errors. The error message indicates the web page has been removed but has not been redirected to a new address, becoming a “dead link.”Let’s make it searchableBy comparison, Algeria’s SGG started annotating the PDFs of its recent gazette editions with text. The Tunisian official gazette website offers legal documents in a searchable format, using the PDF/A (accessible PDF) format. The official Saudi journal offers a dynamic view where users can search and retrieve information without leaving the page.The online version of the London Gazette,  one of the British government’s official journals, has a similar layout to the Tunisian website. It has scans of the print publication and a text layer added to each page. The layered pdf makes it possible to search and copy text from the document as it looks in the print version.The online Official Journal of the European Union has other features. The documents are not only multilingual and searchable but also clickable. Readers can click summary paragraphs to open the relevant detailed pages. The RSS service provided in the website allows registered users to follow documents and get notifications if they are changed.A potential negative impact for businessesIn the past few years, the SGG has made fewer French translations of laws, including most commercial and corporate legislation. According to Laraqui, “the lack of translated legal material could drive away potential investors.”Most countries investing in Morocco speak French or use English as a first or second language. France and the US are Morocco’s biggest investors by far, while only three of the top eight investing countries are Arabic-speaking.Laraqui explains that “when a new law amends or supplements an existing law, the website is not updated with the consolidated law, in contrast to Tunisia’s legislation website.”The legal notices issue is also not available online. The edition contains important legal notices on companies so that third parties can see information about bankruptcy, etc. The electronic portal for the publication of legal announcements in the gazette is also accessible to advertisers who can upload their legal announcements. However, the portal is only available in Arabic.Next steps  According to Laraqui, “It might seem reasonable to have an official translation of all business and corporate laws, but a more urgent need for the business community is the actual availability of current laws.”To enable readers to search for keywords, such as their company’s name or register number, the contents of the gazette’s website need to be presented in plaintext.Using optical character recognition (OCR) would turn the scanned images of text into machine-readable text. Of course, OCR can contain errors depending on the clarity of the image and whether the letters can be easily distinguished. But OCR would be an improvement for the gazette.   The French Protectorate in the Cherifian Empire established by the Franco-Moroccan Treaty of Fez, published the first gazette in Morocco on November 1, 1912. Meanwhile, between 1918 and 1956, the Tetouan-based General Secretariat of the High Commission of Spain in Morocco published an official journal for northern Morocco.After independence, King Mohammed V established the official gazette under the “Royaume du maroc” letterhead.While Morocco’s official gazette is a continuation of its historical gazettes, it can move into the future by becoming more accessible. read more

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Rabat – The administration of Casablanca’s Ain Sebaa 1 prison has categorically denied that a Hirak Rif activist was filmed inside the prison.The prison’s statement was published a few days after a video, purporting to be footage of a Hirak activist, circulated on social media.The prison says that it has no cells similar to the one that appears in the video. According to the statement, the footage was clearly faked because the face of the alleged activist did not appear in the video, which has since been removed.According to the prison, this was not the first attempt of the video makers, as they have allegedly tried to mislead public opinion and undermine the image of the prison with other faked videos.On June 26, Casablanca’s Court of Appeals sentenced 54 Moroccan activists for their involvement in the 2016-2017unauthorized protests in the Al Hoceima province.Four prominent activists, including Nasser Zefzafi, received sentences of 20 years, while others received sentences ranging from 1 to 15 years.All the activists finally agreed to appeal their sentences, except Rabie El Ablaq.El Ablaq received a sentence of 5 years and a fine of MAD 2,000, but decided not to appeal the court’s decision.El Ablaq has also been on a hunger strike for more than 40 days now. The activist was transferred to Moulay Youssef Hospital in Casablanca on Monday due to his hunger strike. read more

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Rabat – France’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian will visit Morocco on Monday, September 10.The French ministry’s website listed the visit as part of Le Drian’s official agenda.The ministry did not give more details about Le Drian’s visit. However, local and international news outlets reported that Le Drian will meet his Moroccan counterpart Nasser Bourita and other officials.The news platforms also speculated that Le Drian’s main objective is to prepare for a future visit of French President Emmanuel Macron in early 2019.Maghreb Confidential reported on August 30 that Macron is expected to visit Morocco in November.The newspaper added that Macron agreed to a prospective visit to Morocco after King Mohammed VI invited him to the launch of Morocco’s first high-speed train, expected to be completed by November. Morocco’s high-speed train project entered the pre-operation phase in June, and total completion was scheduled towards the end of the year.During his visit to Morocco, Le Drian, along with Moroccan senior officials, is also expected to discuss migration.Le Drian’s latest visit to Morocco was in October 2017, when he held talks with Head of Government Saad Eddine El Othmani.Both the Moroccan Ministry of Foreign Affairs and its French counterpart describe the partnership between Paris and Rabat as “exceptional.”In his October visit, Le Drian’s ministry called Morocco a “strategic partner for peace and stability” in the region.“With its return to the African Union and its plan to join the Economic Community of West African States, Morocco plays a growing role in Africa,” said the ministry, noting that cooperation in Africa is a critical issue for Morocco and France.With more than $4.72 billion-worth of exports, France was Morocco’s biggest buyer of goods in 2016 and its second-biggest supplier with Morocco importing goods worth $5.18 billion from France in 2016. read more

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WASHINGTON — If President Donald Trump declares an emergency to build the wall with Mexico, he still needs money to pay for it. And shifting money from other accounts to deliver the $5.7 billion he wants is not without political problems.The administration has been eyeing several pots of money — including disaster funds, counter-narcotic accounts and military construction dollars — to fund Trump’s wall, according to congressional aides and White House officials.White House acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney has said there are various accounts available.One possibility is shifting a portion of the $13 billion in disaster aid Congress approved last year for Puerto Rico and a dozen states, including California and Texas, hit hard by hurricanes, flooding and other disasters. The money funds Army Corps projects, and the Puerto Rico aid alone totals more than $2 billion.But Texas lawmakers revolted over White House plans to tap Hurricane Harvey funds, and Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, said Thursday they won assurances from the White House that the money won’t be used for the wall.“We’ve been pretty clear we thought that would be a mistake,” said Cornyn, who along with the state’s governor and other lawmakers urged the White House to stay away from that account. “There’s limited pots of money he can get into, but I’m pretty confident he won’t get into disaster funds.”A more likely option is the military construction account that’s used to upgrade bases and facilities.Congressional aides said there is $21 billion available. That includes about $10 billion in funds from the current 2019 fiscal year that ends Sept. 30, and $11 billion remaining from the previous four years, said the aides. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly about the funding details.But tapping the military construction money also may hit resistance. The money often goes for improvements to housing, roads, hospitals and other facilities, and can be used to eliminate mould or other hazardous problems at military installations in congressional districts across the nation and around the globe.As an example, the aides said, there is funding for a medical facility at a U.S. base in Germany that has been partially constructed. If those funds were used, the medical centre could be left half built.The president can decide to use military construction funds, but it will be up to the Defence Department to determine which specific projects would lose their money, the aides said.While the president has the authority to take the funds, the aides said that according to the law the money must be used in support of U.S. armed forces and the key question is whether Trump could prove the funds were being spent to actually support troops.The Defence Department has declined to provide any details on the amount of money available.Potentially easier to tap is the military’s counter-drug account, so-called Section 284 money, as suggested by Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., a Trump ally and leader of the conservative Freedom Caucus. But it falls short of what’s needed with about $800 million available.Using that money would not require declaration of a national emergency, but aides said it is less likely the president would dip into those funds.“I’ve obviously suggested 284 for a long time,” Meadows said recently. “There’s not enough money there, but it’s a good start.”The White House has been searching for funding as it became clear Congress would not provide the money Trump was demanding to build the wall. Trump had campaigned on the promise that Mexico would pay for it.Instead, this week lawmakers struck a bipartisan deal to provide nearly $1.4 billion for fences and barriers along the southern border as part of a broad funding package to avoid another federal shutdown.The Senate approved the compromise on Thursday, and House passage was assured before Friday’s deadline. The White House said Trump would sign it but then declare a national emergency and perhaps invoke other executive powers to build the wall.Lolita Baldor And Lisa Mascaro, The Associated Press read more

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BALTIMORE — Attorneys for the Pimlico Race Course owners say the city of Baltimore is trying to gain control of the racetrack and the signature Preakness Stakes race through eminent domain.The Stronach Group attorneys say there’s no “good ground” supporting the lawsuit filed last week by Mayor Catherine Pugh to keep the race in Baltimore. WBAL-TV reports the attorneys sent a letter Wednesday to a judge overseeing the lawsuit, saying Maryland has exclusive authority over all aspects of racing — not Baltimore.The letter says the lawsuit is a “transparent ploy to gain some sort of negotiating leverage over the owners of the Maryland Jockey Club and the Preakness Stakes.” Proposed legislation would make state funds available for The Stronach Group to revamp another site, possibly moving the race.___Information from: WBAL-TV, http://www.wbaltv.comThe Associated Press read more

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WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump says trade talks with China are “moving along very nicely.”Trump made the comment hours before he was scheduled to meet Thursday afternoon with China’s top trade negotiator, Vice Premier Liu He. The two countries are working to end a standoff that has shaken financial markets and darkened the outlook for the world economy.Despite his upbeat assessment, Trump cautioned that “if it’s not a great deal, we’re not doing it.”U.S. and Chinese negotiators on Wednesday began their ninth round of talks to resolve a dispute over American allegations that Beijing is using predatory tactics, including cybertheft, in a campaign to challenge U.S. technological dominance.Trump has slapped tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese products. In retaliation, China has targeted $110 billion in American imports.Darlene Superville And Paul Wiseman, The Associated Press read more

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Rabat – Morocco finished at the top of the overall rankings of the first African Beach Games organized from June 14 to 23 at Sal Island in Cape Verde. Morocco won 16 medals, including 9 gold, 3 silver, and 4 bronze.Moroccan athletes competed in open water swimming, kiteboarding, karate, freestyle football, beach volleyball, beach tennis, beach handball, and beach soccer. Morocco won the gold medals in beach tennis with the men’s doubles, Youssef Ghazouani and Anas Bouaouda clinching the win. In the women’s doubles, Morocco’s Camilia Benabdeljalil and Sarah Benabdeljalil were the victors, and the mixed doubles saw Anas Bouaouda and Camilia Benabdeljali go for gold.Read also: Bid for Morocco’s SAMIR Refinery amid Fresh, Unsettled ControversiesOthmane Djedidi also won a gold in freestyle football. El Hanni Mohammed (men’s individual kata) and Sanae Agalmam (women’s individual kata) won gold medals as well for karate. In the women’s team kata, 1st place went to En-nesyry Aya, Bertali Lamiae, Agalmam Sanae.In open water swimming (5km), the gold medal went to Ben Rahou Mathy, and in beach volleyball, the gold went to the Moroccan women’s team.Second place went to Algeria with 16 medals (5 gold, 6 silver and 5 bronze), while Tunisia took third place (3 gold, 3 silver and 1 bronze). Cape Verde, the game’s host country, took 4th place (3 gold, 2 silver and 5 bronze).The first African Beach Games saw the participation of 886 athletes, including 416 female athletes, in 11 sports competitions included in the official program of the Games. read more