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The Friday news briefing: An at-a-glance survey of some top stories


Highlights from the news file for Friday, Nov. 24

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TRUDEAU MAKES RESIDENTIAL SCHOOL APOLOGY TO FORMER NEWFOUNDLAND STUDENTS: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made an apology on behalf of the federal government for abuse and cultural losses at residential schools in Newfoundland and Labrador. Trudeau told former students in Goose Bay on Friday that the gesture is part of recognizing "hard truths" Canada must confront as a society. The former students were left out of a compensation package and national apology in 2008 by the then Harper government, which contended that Ottawa didn't oversee the schools in question. Trudeau's Liberal government agreed to a settlement last year.

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CFL COMMISH CAUTIOUS ON LINKING FOOTBALL HEAD INJURIES TO BRAIN DISEASE: CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie says there isn't enough scientific evidence to link head injuries in football to brain disease. The NFL says there is a link, but the CFL has not gone that far. Ambrosie said on Friday he is "looking at all the evidence together and says there is no clear link between concussions and chronic traumatic encephalopathy. Ambrosie told a news conference in advance of Sunday's Grey Cup that the CFL is trying to understand the situation better and is going to rely on the science.

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MILITARY EJECTS MEMBERS FOR SEXUAL MISCONDUCT:  The Defence Department says more than two dozen service personnel have been booted out of the military so far this year for inappropriate sexual behaviour. Dozens of other cases are still under review. Chief of defence staff Gen. Jonathan Vance took a hard line on inappropriate sexual behaviour in the military following a series of media reports that described the problem as endemic.

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CANADIAN SUBMARINER IDENTIFIES WITH FAMILIES OF ARGENTINE SUB CREW:  A man who was aboard a Canadian submarine that caught fire says he can relate to what the families of a missing Argentine sub crew are going through. Douglas Renken was one of nine sailors treated for smoke inhalation following a deadly fire on HMCS Chicoutimi in 2004. Renken says he has been following the search for the sub with 44 crew members on board and can only imagine the hell the sailors' families are going through. More than a dozen airplanes and ships have been participating in the multinational search, despite stormy weather that has caused powerful waves.

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JEWISH GROUP WANTS TO REMOVE SWASTIKA FROM ONTARIO STREET SIGN: B'nai Brith is backing some residents of an Ontario town to persuade local politicians to rename a street currently called Swastika Trail. B'nai Brith Canada has started an online petition calling on Puslinch Township, about 75 kilometres west of Toronto, to change the street name. The group plans to present the petition to the township council when it discusses the issue of renaming the private road next month. Swastika Trail was named in the 1920s before the rise of Adolf Hitler in Nazi Germany, according to local residents.

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GROCERY CHAIN SLASHING ADMINISTRATION: Grocery giant Sobeys is slashing about 800 office jobs across Canada. The company says it's part of efforts to create one efficient national organization out of five regional operations. Sobeys is Canada's second-largest grocery company, but has been struggling for several years with problems arising from its acquisition of Safeway Canada — which gave Sobeys a much bigger presence in Western Canada.

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ONLINE CANNABIS DISPENSARIES GET IN ON BLACK FRIDAY: Online cannabis dispensaries got in on Black Friday sales, with some slashing prices on their products. Several online cannabis stores are holding Black Friday sales for the first time this year in an effort to stay competitive. Some were offering 45 per cent off on their products. The sale of medical marijuana has been legal for years, but selling cannabis for recreational purposes isn't legal until next summer.

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INTERNAL TRADE BARRIERS ON BOOZE UP FOR DISCUSSION: Federal and provincial ministers responsible for internal trade say they are making progress on reducing barriers for interprovincial alcohol sales. Ontario's Brad Duguid says he would rather see a political settlement before the Supreme Court of Canada hears a case next month on cross-border liquor sales. The issue has gained prominence after a New Brunswick man successfully challenged a fine for bringing back too much alcohol from Quebec.

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UN CONDEMNS EGYPT MOSQUE ATTACK: The UN Security Council and Secretary-General Antonio Guterres have condemned the deadly attack on a mosque in Egypt's Sinai peninsula in "the strongest terms" and called for the perpetrators to be brought to justice. The council statement called it a "heinous and cowardly terrorist attack" and reiterated that all acts of terrorism "are criminal and unjustifiable, regardless of their motivation." At least 235 people were killed.

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INTERNATIONAL LEADERS HAVE ADVICE FOR ZIMBABWE'S NEW LEADER: Some international leaders are urging Zimbabwe's new president to deliver on his promises of inclusiveness, economic reform and free and fair elections. Britain's minister for Africa, Rory Stewart, says "this is a country which has suffered terribly and which may be, if we're patient ... at a moment of change." The group of global leaders known as The Elders says that "upcoming elections in 2018 are a crucial test of Zimbabwe's new leaders' commitment to democracy and political reform."

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The Canadian Press

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