TAMPA, Fla. – A Palestinian-American teen left with stitches and bruises from his detention by Israeli security forces said Sunday he was beaten, kicked and blindfolded on a family trip to the Middle East after a cousin there was abducted and killed.
Story continues below
Fifteen-year-old Tariq Abu Khdeir flew home to Florida last week and told The Associated Press that he holds out hope he can visit the region again and “come back safe.”
READ MORE: Fierce battle in Gaza leads to deadliest day in Israel, Hamas conflict
Israeli authorities released Tariq three days after he was detained and sentenced him to nine days of house arrest while they investigated what they said was his participation in violent protests over the death of his cousin, 16-year-old Mohammed Abu Khdeir, a Palestinian living near Jerusalem.
Seated beside his mother, the teen told AP that he did not take part in rock-throwing disturbances shortly before he was picked up by Israeli security forces. He said he just was watching and listening to a commotion surrounding the investigation of his cousin’s disappearance when Israeli forces began shooting rubber bullets and tear gas into a crowd that had formed.
“I didn’t do anything to them (Israeli authorities) to do this to me,” he said.
IN PICTURES: Gaza’s deadly day
The teen said in the first moments of being picked up, he was slammed down. And during the ordeal, he said, he was kicked in several parts of his body and blindfolded.
At the time, the family was on a trip that began in June and was expected to last about six weeks.
Tariq said he and Mohammed had struck up a quick friendship. They visited sacred sites including the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem. He said they helped set up lights in neighbour’s homes before the start of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
“He took me to as many places as he could,” Tariq said.
Mohammed was killed the fifth week of the visit, Tariq said. He said he had gone off to a bakery for about five minutes the day Mohammed disappeared, returning to find him gone.
After Mohammed was found dead, a crowd filled with family members formed and started screaming at the police, Tariq said.
“Everything was getting so tense,” he recalled.
READ MORE: More than 330 Palestinians killed as Gaza ground offensive grows
The neighbourhood calmed before security forces came back and started shooting rubber bullets and tear gas, according to Tariq. He saw people on his left running and screaming for help. Right behind them were three soldiers, he said. Everyone scattered and ran from the alley. Tariq said he tried to jump a gate but fell.
“I was running because I didn’t know why they (Israeli authorities) were running after me,” he said.
Tariq said he was slammed down, head first, when he was detained. He added that his hands were tied behind his back and he was kicked in the face, stomach and ribs and went unconscious for a time. Tariq was taken to jail where he was blindfolded and still handcuffed, he added.
Tariq said he felt the hits again when he watched a video of his beating after his release.
“I couldn’t believe it. All the stuff I went through,” Tariq said. “I was getting hit so much, I couldn’t even say words. They beat on me like … there was no problem.”
©2014The Canadian Press
EDMONTON – Alberta Occupational Health and Safety is investigating the death of a teenager at a construction site southeast of Drumheller.
The teen was working for Arjon Construction on a gravel crushing operation at Wintering Hills.
OHS said there was an issue with a conveyor belt at the site.
A co-worker described the incident as a freak accident.
Story continues below
Alberta company fined in 2009 Saskatchewan workplace death
Man fined $5,750 in construction site death of 12-year-old boy
“It shouldn’t have happened, I agree. The company is a very safe company. I can tell you the boy was wearing all his proper equipment. He did everything right,” said Mathew Blackburn.
“It could have happened to me. It happened. It’s a dangerous site.”
The death is not being treated as criminal. Friends and family have identified the victim as 15-year-old Chris Lawrence.
According to OHS, anyone aged 15 to 18 can work at any type of job as long as they don’t work between midnight and 6 a.m.
“Employers are responsible for making sure that their employees are fully trained and that they are aware of all the workplace hazards,” explains Lauren Welsh from OHS. “It appears that this worker was in training to be able to work on this site.”
The gravel operation has since been shut down for the investigation.
The Alberta Federation of Labour calls the fatality a “tragic reminder of Alberta’s unsafe work laws.”
“Alberta’s child labour laws are among the most lax in Canada,” said Siobhan Vipond, AFL secretary treasurer.
“The AFL has repeatedly made recommendations to improve working conditions and safety standards, specifically for young workers. This weekend’s tragic news is yet another reminder that much more needs to be done to keep Albertans safe at work.”
“It’s always terrible,” Vipond told Global News on Tuesday.
“Nobody goes to work and doesn’t expect to come home, and nobody’s family expects someone not to come home.
“It’s particularly tragic when we’re talking about a young worker, 15, because you think about all the things someone could have done with their lives. But it does make you examine what are we not doing right – that we’re not protecting our kids… We know it’s summer, construction season is upon us. Kids like to go out, earn some summer money, but this isn’t what should happen.”
In April, a submission to the Employment Standards from the AFL included several pages of recommendations on young workers.
“Alberta needs targeted inspections of workplaces that employ 15-17 year-olds, especially in construction and other comparatively dangerous occupations,” said Vipond. “The AFL made urgent recommendations earlier this year, and this past weekend we are sadly reminded why these changes are so desperately needed in Alberta.”
The province is currently conducting an Employment Standards Code review, and has consulted roughly 4,000 Albertans and organizations for feedback.
Would the province look at restricting young workers from certain industries that are more dangerous?
“That question is open for discussion, and I think that’s what’s being discussed right now as part of the larger Employment Standards Code review that’s going on,” said Brookes Merritt, spokesperson with the Alberta government’s Occupational Health and Safety department.
“Generally speaking, youth workers are in a higher risk category, largely due to lack of experience in the workforce.”
“And when you combine youth with certain industries that are higher risk in general like the construction industry or the mining industry, certainly that’s a concern to the government of Alberta, and we do look very closely at what the working conditions are for youth workers in industries like that,” explained Merritt.
He said, in the last three years, there have been three young people killed on the job in Alberta.
Alberta youth fatalities on the job Supplied, Occupational Health and Safety
Alberta youth fatalities on the job
Supplied, Occupational Health and Safety
“For every workplace fatality, an Occupation Health and Safety inspection is set in motion, an investigation, and that’s occurring in this case too,” said Merritt. “Given the young age of the worker here, we’re also running a parallel Employment Standards investigation, and that’s looking at things like hours of work, rest periods, rates of pay, etc.”
“We expect and demand – in the province of Alberta – that, regardless of the age of the worker or the nature of the work, that employers take the responsibility – and they must by legislation – ensure that their workers are operating in a safe manner.”
A report on the province’s Employment Standards Code review is due to be presented in the fall.
Occupational Health and Safety Results 2013
UPDATE: After searching for more than two months for a bone marrow donor, Montreal leukemia patient Mai Duong has found a compatible cord blood donor. It’s not the perfect solution, but doctors say it’s the next best thing.
It is not being released where the donor came from.
“A woman has given birth to her child and has donated her baby’s umbilical cord to save another life,” said Duong in a statement.
Story continues below
“Thank you dear mommy, we cannot fathom the importance of your gesture. I am very moved and I profoundly thank you for what you’ve done.”
VANCOUVER — Mai Duong, 34, only has six weeks left to get a life-saving stem cell or bone marrow transplant — and she’s pleading with the Lower Mainland’s Asian population to save her.
The mother of one was born and raised in Montreal. She’s had good health for most of her life, until she was diagnosed with leukemia in January 2013, while pregnant with her second child. Doctors told her she had to terminate the pregnancy — she was at 15 weeks — and start chemotherapy immediately.
Duong went into remission, but ten months later the cancer was back. And this time it was more aggressive and chemotherapy wouldn’t work, she was told. Instead, she needed stem cells or a bone marrow transplant.
“Even though I’m on the international registry list for donors, I did not have a match for the bone marrow. I was devastated when they told me that,” she told Global News.
It turns out the problem of finding a match, and a perfect one at that, is more common among those of Asian descent. In 2012, 2-year-old Jeremy Kong of San Francisco was diagnosed with leukemia and couldn’t find a match until he went public. After doing so, he found a nine out of ten bone marrow donor match and underwent a transplant, but died a year later. Experts say Vietnamese, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Filipino and other South Asian populations are behind Caucasians when it comes to donating blood and organs.
Jeremy Kong, File Photo.
Jeremy Kong, File Photo.
“We’re severely underrepresented in the international list. So it’s not even a local or a national problem; it’s a global problem,” said Duong.
Duong is turning to Vancouver because of its large Asian population, and urging people to get tested. She needs a donor of Vietnamese or Filipino descent for a perfect match, and she needs to find them within six weeks or it’s unlikely she’ll survive.
For more information on how you can help Duong, visit her Facebook page or website and get tested at OneMatch桑拿按摩.
–With files from Darlene Heidemann.
Watch above: a monument unveiled at Back to Batoche Days honours Métis veterans
SASKATOON – For the past four days, over 20,000 people have come to celebrate Métis culture at the Back to Batoche Days Festival north of Saskatoon.
During this year’s event, a historic monument was unveiled.
Story continues below
Kids train for run to honour Métis veterans
Historic Bell of Batoche inspires new generation
Bell of Batoche displayed at Saskatchewan historic site
“We built the only Métis veterans monument that will have all of the names of the Métis veterans that fought in 1885, World War I, World War II, Korea,” said Robert Doucette, president of the Métis Nation of Saskatchewan.
“I’m hoping at some point it will also be the peacekeepers that fought in Afghanistan.”
Lennard Morin comes from a proud Métis military family.
“My uncle was in World War I and he was captured, and he died as a prisoner from wounds as a P.O.W. So he’s buried in France,” Morin explained.
Morin said the Métis people who fought in World War I were promised they would be heroes when they came home but that promise wasn’t kept.
“Because they were Métis, they weren’t. So they came home emotionally scarred,” said Morin.
Morin made it his goal to have a monument erected to recognize all that Métis veterans have sacrificed for Canada.
After years of lobbying and pushing for government funding, Morin’s dream was finally realized with the monument’s unveiling on Sunday.
The festival is widely recognized as the biggest Métis cultural event in Canada. It draws more than 5,000 visitors daily.
“It has been just another great year in Batoche. We’ve got people from the United States, people from all over the world. Batoche has come to symbolize a family gathering,” said Doucette.
After Sunday’s mass, Métis leaders and church members embarked on a traditional walk from the Batoche cultural grounds to the national historic site where the Bell of Batoche was brought out and rung with pride.
ABOVE: UN Security Council President comments on the emergency Isreal/Gaza session of the Security Council
The U.N. Security Council emerged from an emergency session late Sunday on the worsening situation in Gaza expressing “serious concern” about the rising civilian death toll and demanding an immediate end to the fighting.
Story continues below
The council met at the request of Jordan, which proposed a more strongly worded draft resolution for consideration. The resolution, obtained by The Associated Press, expressed “grave concern” at the high number of civilians killed in Gaza, including children, and called for an immediate cease-fire, “including the withdrawal of Israeli occupying forces from the Gaza Strip.”
READ MORE: Hamas claims kidnapping of Israeli soldier in deadliest day of offensive
The first major ground battle in two weeks of Israel-Hamas fighting on Sunday killed at least 65 Palestinians and 13 Israeli soldiers and forced thousands of terrified Palestinian civilians to flee their neighbourhoods.
U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon has called Israel’s latest incursion “atrocious,” and said it must do far more to protect civilians.
The draft resolution called for the protection of civilians, the lifting of the “Israeli restrictions imposed on the movement of persons and goods into and out of the Gaza Strip” and immediate humanitarian assistance to civilians in Gaza.
But Jordan’s proposed resolution was not discussed, and the acting council president, Rwanda’s U.N. Ambassador Eugene-Richard Gasana, emerged to read elements of a more limited press statement that called for the need to improve the humanitarian situation in the region and welcome Egypt’s efforts to broker a cease-fire.
The Palestinian United Nations envoy, Ambassador Riyad Mansour, was disappointed. “We were hoping for the Security Council to adopt a resolution to condemn the aggression against our people,” he told reporters. But he said Sunday’s council statement was “a test” for Israel to see if it would comply.
READ MORE: Death toll reaches 501 in Gaza as diplomatic efforts step up
Before the meeting, Mansour issued a challenge to the council, asking reporters, “If the world body in charge of peace and security is not stopping the killing of our people, where shall we go?”
Russian Ambassador Vitaly Churkin stepped out of the meeting briefly and complained to reporters that the council had been summoned to meet without a specific proposal to discuss.
“Why have this meeting?” Churkin asked. “The Security Council is put in a very awkward position. Obviously, nothing is going to come out of it.”
After the meeting, the U.S. ambassador to the U.N., Samantha Power, tweeted: “Gaza ceasefire would let us address urgent humanitarian needs & underlying issues. Must work to get off this dangerous path & restore calm.”
©2014The Associated Press
WATCH ABOVE: Toronto Honda Indy held two races on Sunday due to weather conditions on Saturday causing some issues for race car drivers. Cindy Pom reports.
TORONTO – Mike Conway was the surprise winner of a collision-filled second race at the Honda Indy Toronto.
Conway, a road- and street-course specialist, went to the pits early for new tires then stayed out on course as the leaders pitted to put him in position to win the 11-turn, 2.81-kilometre race at Exhibition Place on Sunday.
Story continues below
A collision returned cars to pit lane under a red flag with under five minutes to go after the race was changed from 65 laps to a timed, 80-minute event.
When the race resumed all Conway needed to do was hit the throttle and take the checkered flag after starting 11th on the grid.
WATCH: Fan Friday gives all race fans a chance to check out the Honda Indy Toronto
Tony Kanaan finished second while Will Power was third.
The win is Conway’s second of the season after he finished first at Long Beach in April, and the fourth of his career.
Sebastien Bourdais won the opening race from the pole for his first IndyCar victory in six years. Overall points leader Helio Castroneves finished second, followed by Kanaan.
Bourdais also previously won in Toronto in 2004. Prior to Sunday his last victory was in the now defunct Champ Car series in 2007 at Mexico City.
Both races were held Sunday after rain Saturday postponed the first race of a planned weekend doubleheader.
The afternoon race featured a standing start, which is rare for IndyCar. Justin Wilson’s stalled start was the only blip, although a yellow flag was waved before the opening lap was completed when Kanaan lost power heading into a corner.
Everything went well through the first 11 laps. But then, once again, the rain began to fall.
Canadian James Hinchcliffe, Juan Pablo Montoya and Mikhail Aleshin were the first victims of the wet surface. Montoya slid into a corner and Aleshin followed by wedging underneath Montoya. Hinchcliffe slid into the tire barrier in the same corner but had to wait for safety crews to pull Montoya’s car off Aleshin.
WATCH: Race Trucks take flight at the Honda Indy Toronto
The incident wiped out any hope Hinchcliffe had of winning a race that has caused him nothing but heartache during his four-year IndyCar career. The Oakville, Ont., native finished 18th in the afternoon after settling for eighth place in the morning, which matched his career best in Toronto.
More spins followed as cars tried to adjust to the suddenly wet track.
Castroneves held his lead, helped out by Power’s inability to make a pass on the slick corners. Drivers appeared hesitant to overtake – just staying in one piece because the priority.
But Power finally made his move on Lap 43. His car danced around the outside of Castroneves on a corner, although another yellow flag kept him from opening up a gap. Meanwhile, away from the action, Conway went to the pits early to get on fresh tires as the track dried.
Power held his advantage when the leaders went to the pits for a tire change, but several drivers including Conway stayed out on track to move to the front of the grid.
Conway took the lead on Lap 51, while Castroneves dropped off the pace. Conway benefited from yet another delay when another collision collected several cars including Ryan Hunter-Reay and triggered a red flag.
Castroneves, who led 32 laps of the race, finished 12th.
©2014The Canadian Press
TORONTO – Melky Cabrera answered a Texas comeback with a solo homer in the seventh inning and singled home two more runs in the eighth to give the Toronto Blue Jays a wild 9-6 win over the Rangers on Sunday afternoon.
Cabrera gave the Jays a 6-5 lead when he sent reliever Neftali Feliz’s third pitch of the day deep to centre field to open the home half of the seventh. It was the left-fielder’s 12th home run of the season, delighting the crowd of 36,011 on a 23-degree day with the roof open and then closed at Rogers Centre.
Story continues below
One inning later, Munenori Kawasaki made it 7-5 with an RBI single after Toronto loaded the bases with one out on three singles. Then Cabrera slammed a single to right-centre to bring home Anthony Gose and Jose Reyes.
Left-hander Brett Cecil, coming on in the eight with no outs and a man on second, snuffed out a Rangers threat.
Closer Casey Janssen, recovered from a stomach ailment, gave up three hits and a run in a nervous ninth and was replaced by Aaron Loup with two outs and men on first and second. The left-hander finally ended it by inducing former Jay J.P. Arencibia to pop out on a 3-and-2 pitch for his fourth save.
READ MORE: Bud Selig can see Montreal major league baseball bid
Toronto outhit Texas 15-12.
Jays starter Mark Buehrle went six innings in his eighth unsuccessful attempt to record a win since June 1.
Todd Redmond (1-4) got the win while Feliz (0-1) was tagged with the loss.
Toronto (51-49) has won seven of the last eight completed series against Texas (39-59) at Rogers Centre.
Down 5-2, the Rangers had rallied for three runs in the sixth to tie the score as the bottom of the order loaded the bases. A Buehrle balk, that saw the pitcher literally fall off the mound as he lost his footing throwing, and a Daniel Robertson two-RBI single made it a whole new ball game.
Robertson, filling in for the injured Alex Rios, drove in four of Texas’ five runs.
Earlier, catcher Dioner Navarro homered for Toronto and Reyes drove in two runs with a bases-loaded single in a game that saw both teams with plenty of chances to keep the scoreboard turning over.
It was a no-decision for Buehrle, who has posted an 0-5 record in his last eight outings to drop his record to 10-6. And this after reaching the 10-win mark faster than ever before in his career.
He gave up five runs on eight hits with five strikeouts and three walks in his 449th consecutive start, the longest active streak in the majors.
The left-hander, who came into the game with a 13-5 record in 20 career starts against the Rangers, made life difficult for himself in the second, third and fourth by putting the leadoff man on with two walks and a single.
READ MORE: Tolleson, Reyes, Bautista help lead Blue Jays over Rays 8-5
But, two runs aside in the third, he cleaned up after himself until stepping into it again in the sixth.
Despite winning the series opener 5-1 Friday, the Rangers have been in a free fall for a while. They came into the game having lost nine of 10 and are now 2-14 in July, the fewest wins for any team in the majors.
However you stack them, the numbers are shocking. Texas has lost 16 of 18 and 24 of 28.
One explanation: Texas has used more players (51) and pitchers (30) than any other team this season. And the Rangers lead the majors in use of the disabled list (21) and current players on the DL (14). That explains the 15 rookies on the active roster.
Texas starter Nick Tepesch was coming off eight days rest for the third time in his last four starts, during which he went 1-3. He lasted 4 1/3 innings Sunday, giving up five runs on nine hits.
Buehrle faced the minimum six batters in the first two innings, using a slick pickoff move to remove Chris Gimenez after walking the first baseman.
Navarro opened the second with his sixth homer of the season, driving a 2-2 pitch into right-centre to give Toronto a 1-0 lead. One out later, Dan Johnson doubled, Steve Tolleson was hit by a pitch and Gose singled to load the bases. Reyes singled home two runs and then stole a base before being doubled off second on a Kawasaki lineout.
Texas responded in the third, putting men on second and third with no outs thanks to a single, walk and sacrifice bunt. Robertson then singled home both men with Adam Rosales beating Gose’s throw from right field to cut the lead to 3-2.
A Johnson error on an Elvis Andrus ground ball made matters worse but Buehrle put a lid on the inning with consecutive strikeouts.
A Jose Bautista walk and opposite field double by Navarro was followed by a Colby Rasmus RBI single for a 4-2 lead in the bottom of the third.
Tepesch bounced back with a 1-2-3 fourth but exited with one out in the fifth and the bases loaded from a Cabrera single, Bautista double and Rasmus walk. Right-hander Shawn Tolleson, no relation to the Jays’ Tolleson, came on and gave up a sacrifice fly to Johnson that scored Cabrera to make it 5-2.
Shawn then struck out Steve in a battle of Tollesons to end the threat.
The Rangers, helped by a successful video challenge, had men on first and second in the sixth before Cabrera made a beautiful catch in left field to deny Rosales. Rougned Odor singled to load the bases with two outs.
Buehrle’s balk brought home Geovany Soto and Robertson singled home two more.
The Jays open a four-game homestand against the Boston Red Sox on Monday.
©2014The Canadian Press
Above watch: Billy Shields reports on the many residents who came out late Saturday night to watch an example of public works that turned into a local attraction.
VAUDREUIL – Residents in the community a stone’s throw from the West Island got to see an unusual spectacle Saturday night.
A team of 9 bulldozers, backhoes and jack hammers worked in tandem to bring the old St-Charles overpass down on the eve of the summer construction holiday.
Story continues below
“Everyone was in sync with each other,” said Vaudreuil resident Patrick Fernandes, who watched it with his girlfriend, Irene Williams.
“As soon as one guy would move, everybody would move out of the way.”
Williams took photos and video of the demolition.
“My boyfriend and I were just coming home from a fishing trip, and we remembered the bridge was being demolished,” she said.
“We thought it was just going to be the two of us, and we showed up here and there was a bunch of people here to look at what was happening.”
Transport Quebec was unavailable to comment on the operation Sunday.
Workers closed off the A-40 during construction. Residents say the demolished overpass will join an existing overpass built recently to form a four-lane, two-way thoroughfare over the A-40, joining Vaudreuil-sur-la-Lac to a shopping district in Vaudreuil-Dorion.
The demolition took some residents completely by surprise.
“No kidding,” said Anne-Marie Chmilnitzky, who was walking nearby.
“Because it was there yesterday,we walked over it and now it’s not there!”
VANCOUVER – There is some relief on the way for residents and firefighters around the province.
While most of B.C. has been enjoying the hot temperatures lately, the hot and dry conditions has led to 163 fires burning in B.C. today. There are 17 fires of note.
A much needed change is on the way for many areas of the province however.
Story continues below
READ MORE: B.C. under evacuation alerts and orders due to wildfires
Global BC weather anchor Kate Gajdosik says this change will affect the regions severely affected by wildfire activity.
The first in a series of weather disturbances has already moved into Northern B.C., spreading heavy rain along the coast and showers through the Central Interior.
Through the weekend the chance for showers will move into the Southern Interior, although heavy downpours are not expected.
PHOTOS: Wildfires burning across B.C.
For the Okanagan Valley, where some of the province’s most aggressive fires are burning, there will not be significant rainfall to help fight the fires. The biggest factor in this region will be wind, which could force the spread of smoke and flames.
Gajdosik says southwesterly winds are expected to get strong and gusty through Friday afternoon and evening, with winds gusting upwards of 40 km/hr. Wind is a powerful and often unpredictable weather process, adds Gajdosik, as sometimes a slight breeze is enough to fan the flames of an out of control wildfire.
Temperatures on Friday will remain at about 28 and 29 degrees in the Okanagan and while it will cool down over the weekend, the wind from the southwest will be quite dry.
In Prince George Friday morning the smoke was so thick from nearby fires that the street lamps had to be lit again. The smoke is from the Chelaslie Fire near Tetachuk Lake, which was very active on Thursday and residents of Prince George were seeing those effects the next day. The smoke is mixed in with a rain system, bringing the first serious rain to the area for a couple of weeks.
Above watch: Elysia Bryan-Baynes has the latest on the tanker truck explosion
MONTREAL – More information is emerging about the tanker truck explosion on Highway 640 that left one man dead on Sunday.
Truckers who worked with the 50-year-old driver are in mourning but say that stretch of highway is notoriously dangerous.
“He’s been with the company since 2011, appeared to have a very clean record,” explained Rick Leckner, spokesperson of the GHL Transport company.
“He had left the terminal Sunday afternoon with his first delivery of the day when the accident happened.”
At around 4 p.m. Sunday, the truck, carrying 45,000 litres of diesel and gasoline, was involved in a major collision and caught fire near the junction of Highway 40 and 640 close to Charlemagne.
The crash involved the tanker truck a transport truck and four cars, two other people suffered minor injuries.
The explosion left a spectacular plume of black smoke above the region.
The heat of the blaze damaged the roadway and melted highway signs.
On Monday morning, Transport Quebec re-opened most of the roadways but closed it again later in the afternoon to start repairs.
Investigators are still on the scene trying to determine how the accident happened.
Police say speed is not the only factor they consider.
“The driver might’ve had a heart attack before, was there an animal on the road,” said SQ officer, Audrey Anne-Bilodeau
“These are the kinds of things investigators have to go through.”
Gallery: Photos taken by witnesses of black smoke following explosion