Six stories in the news for Monday, Aug. 20

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POLICE CHIEFS WANT NEW DATA TREATY WITH U.S.

Canada’s police chiefs are pressing Ottawa to sign a new electronic data-sharing agreement with the U.S. to help them battle crimes ranging from fraud to cyberterrorism. But the government and the federal privacy commissioner say more consultation and study are needed to ensure appropriate protection of personal information before taking such a step. The Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police says cross-border access to information is a crucial issue for law enforcement agencies.

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WILDFIRE SMOKE CREATING AIR QUALITY ISSUES ACROSS WESTERN CANADA

More smoky, hazy air is expected to blanket much of Metro Vancouver and the Lower Mainland today as nearly 600 wildfires continue to rage across British Columbia. Massive clouds of choking smoke from the wildfires has prompted air quality advisories for much of Western Canada. The fires near the Nadina, Shovel and Tesla lakes in B.C.’s Bulkley-Nechako region remain the largest in the province at more than 1,600 square kilometres combined.

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ANTI-PIPELINE ACTIVISTS RELEASED EARLY

Five pipeline protesters — including Order of Canada recipient Jean Swanson — were released from a B.C. jail on Sunday, a few days before their week-long sentences were set to end. The five women were sentenced on Aug. 15, after pleading guilty to contempt charges. Upon their release they issued a statement saying they were jailed because of their opposition to the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion. The women said they are “political prisoners,” not criminals.

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ALL EYES ON SCHEER: TORIES TO MEET IN HALIFAX

Federal Conservative Party members are preparing to gather this week for their first policy convention since Andrew Scheer became party leader last year. After a week of internal caucus squabbles, Scheer will attempt to refocus the spotlight on trying to convince Canadians that his party is a government-in-waiting. The three-day event beginning Thursday in Halifax comes on the heels of a week of headaches for the Tories, inflicted principally by Quebec M-P Maxime Bernier.

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TRUDEAU TO RUN AGAIN IN 2019 ELECTION

Justin Trudeau will run again in the 2019 election. The Liberal leader formally announced his nomination at a party event Sunday in his Montreal riding of Papineau. The partisan crowd cheered as Trudeau reaffirmed his belief in what he called “positive politics,” and accused Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer of exploiting fear and division. Trudeau was first elected to represent Papineau in 2008, and was re-elected in 2011 and 2015.

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CANADIAN BANKS SET FOR ANOTHER STRONG QUARTER

Canada’s biggest banks are expected to report yet another strong quarter as the country’s housing market shows signs of stability and rising interest rates add to their bottom lines. Royal Bank of Canada is the first lender to report its fiscal third-quarter results on Wednesday, and most analysts are expecting “solid” growth across the industry, with estimates of earnings-per-share growth as high as 10 per cent year-over-year.

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ALSO IN THE NEWS TODAY:

— Premier Doug Ford addresses annual Conference of the Association of Municipalities of Ontario in Ottawa.

— Amazon breaks ground at Ottawa location of its 1-million square foot fulfillment centre.

— Toronto councillors hold special meeting to discuss the province’s Bill 5, meant to reduce the size of council from 47 to 25.

— Calgary trial for Oluwatosin Oluwafemi who’s charged with second-degree murder in the 2014 death of his four-year-old daughter.

— Seamus O’Regan, minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence, participates in a Veterans Town Hall in Kelowna.

— 27th International Ornithological Congress is being held in Vancouver.

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The Canadian Press

The Canadian Press