India Elections, Terror attacks, Mountie killings, Ebola, Ghomeshi scandal among top news events in 2014

An in-brief look at some of the most significant news events of the last 12 months, in chronological order:


Colorado becomes the first U.S. state to allow recreational marijuana sales to adults at licensed pot stores. Washington state followed suit in July.

Phil Everly, the youngest of the Everly Brothers, died of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. He was 74.

Nineteen cars and a locomotive of a CN freight train hauling crude oil and liquefied petroleum derailed near Plaster Rock, N.B., sparking a fire that burned for days and forced the evacuation of about 150 people.

Canada announced North America’s first death from the H5N1 bird flu infection, a young nurse from Red Deer, Alta., who fell ill while flying home from a three-week visit to Beijing. She died Jan. 3.

Ariel Sharon, the Israeli general and prime minister who was one of the country’s most iconic and controversial figures, died eight years after suffering a stroke that left him in a coma. He was 85.

Actor Russell Johnson, known to generations of TV fans as the Professor on “Gilligan’s Island,” died at age 89.

Fire raged through a residence for senior citizens in L’Isle-Verte, Que., killing 32 people. The owners of the facility were part of a $3.8-million civil lawsuit later filed against the town alleging it failed to implement emergency plans that might have lowered the death toll.

The first case of a deadly virus that killed millions of baby pigs in the U.S. was confirmed in Canada at a farm in Middlesex County in Ontario. The virus (porcine epidemic diarrhea) was later also found at farms in Ontario, Manitoba, Quebec and Prince Edward Island.

Folk singer and political activist Pete Seeger died at the age of 94. He helped make “We Shall Overcome” the anthem of the civil rights movement when he published it in 1948.

Billing it as a bid to reduce partisanship in the Upper Chamber, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau expelled the 32 Liberal senators from his caucus.

Ontario Provincial Police charged discredited engineer Robert Wood, 64, in connection with the June 2012 deadly roof collapse of a mall in Elliot Lake. Charges included two counts of criminal negligence causing death.

An inquiry judge found Manitoba child welfare fundamentally misunderstood its mandate to protect children and failed to save five-year-old Phoenix Sinclair, who was murdered by her mother and the woman’s boyfriend in 2005 despite multiple notices of concern for her safety from various sources.

Former newspaper baron Conrad Black, who was convicted of fraud and obstruction of justice in the U.S. and served a prison sentence there, was removed from the Order of Canada.



Kejriwal resigns

Austrian-born actor Maximilian Schell, a fugitive from Adolf Hitler who won an Oscar for his role as a defence attorney in “Judgment at Nuremberg,” died at age 83.

Philip Seymour Hoffman, who won the best actor Oscar for his portrayal of writer Truman Capote and was regarded as one of the world’s finest actors, was found dead in his apartment of a drug overdose. He was 46.

RCMP charged former senator Mac Harb and suspended senator Patrick Brazeau with fraud and breach of trust in relation to their travel and living expense claims, the first criminal charges to emanate from the year-long Senate expenses scandal.

The Harper government introduced legislation to toughen up parts of Canada’s election law, while loosening the rules that govern political donations and party spending. The bill included a mandatory public registry for automated election calls and jail time for anyone convicted of impersonating an elections official.

A report by a U.N. human rights committee blasted the Vatican’s “code of silence” that it said allowed priests to rape and molest tens of thousands of children over decades, and urged the Holy See to open its files on pedophiles and bishops who concealed their crimes.

The opening ceremony for the Winter Olympics was held in Sochi, Russia. Women’s hockey star Hayley Wickenheiser was Canada’s flag-bearer.

Shirley Temple, the dimpled, curly-haired child star who sang and danced her way into the hearts of Depression-era moviegoers, died at her home near San Francisco. She was 85.

Sid Caesar, the pioneer of TV comedy who inspired a generation of famous writers, died at age 91.

The Canadian women’s hockey team won its fourth consecutive gold medal at the Winter Olympics, edging out the rival U.S. team 3-2 in overtime.

Ukraine’s embattled president fled Kyiv after opposition protesters took control of the capital in the wake of three days of deadly clashes with police. More than 80 people were killed and hundreds injured in the worst violence in nearly three months of protests sparked by Viktor Yanukovych’s decision to abort a pact with the European Union in favour of close ties with Russia.

Canada won its second consecutive Olympic men’s hockey gold medal, defeating Sweden 3-0. It closed the Sochi Games with 10 gold, 10 silver and five bronze, fourth overall in total medals and third-most in golds.

An Al-Qaida-inspired extremist was sentenced to life without parole for hacking British soldier Lee Rigby to death in May 2013 on a London street in front of horrified passersby. His accomplice received a minimum 45-year sentence.

Ukraine’s parliament approved 39-year-old Arseniy Yatsenyuk as the country’s new prime minister.



Russian troops took over the strategic Crimean peninsula in Ukraine despite calls by U.S. President Barack Obama for Moscow to pull back its forces.

The murder trial of Oscar Pistorius began in Pretoria, South Africa. The double-amputee Olympic athlete was charged in the shooting death of girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in the pre-dawn hours of Valentine’s Day 2013 but he argued he had mistaken her for a burglar.

A Malaysia Airlines jet carrying 239 people, including two Canadians, vanished on a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. Despite a massive multinational search and wide-ranging theories about what might have happened, Flight MH370 was not found.

Canada and South Korea announced they concluded a free trade deal, Canada’s first such foray into the Asia-Pacific region.

The last 100 Canadian Forces soldiers on duty in Afghanistan saw their three year training mission for Afghan security forces formally come to an end at a ceremonial flag-lowering at the Canadian embassy in Kabul.

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed an agreement to annex Crimea, two days after residents voted overwhelmingly to secede from Ukraine. The vote was widely condemned as illegal by Western leaders, who moved swiftly to punish Russia with economic sanctions.

Alison Redford announced she was stepping down as Alberta premier amid unrest in her Progressive Conservative caucus over her leadership style and questionable travel expenses. On Aug. 6, she resigned her seat as an MLA.

The Supreme Court of Canada rejected Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s hand-picked appointment to the high court. It ruled Marc Nadon, the semi-retired Federal Court of Appeal judge from Quebec, did not meet the specific requirements for the jurists appointed from that province.

A massive landslide swept through part of the small community of Oso, Wash., 90 kilometres northeast of Seattle, killing 43 and destroying 30 homes.

Citing a new analysis of satellite data, Malaysia’s prime minister announced a missing jetliner with 239 people aboard had crashed into a remote corner of the Indian Ocean.

Striking truckers at Canada’s largest port reached a deal to end a weeks-long strike that had left hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of cargo stranded at Vancouver-area container terminals.


Mickey Rooney, the pint-size actor whose more than 80-year career spanned silent comedies, Shakespeare, Judy Garland musicals, Andy Hardy stardom, television and Broadway theatre, died at age 93.

Philippe Couillard led the Liberals to a majority win in the Quebec election, as voters rebuffed the incumbent Parti Quebecois agenda for a possible third sovereignty referendum and its divisive secular charter. PQ leader Pauline Marois lost her riding and resigned, just 18 months after coming to power with a minority government.

Toyota Motor Corp. recalled 6.39 million vehicles globally, including more than half a million in Canada, for a variety of problems spanning nearly 30 models. Some vehicles were recalled for more than one problem.

Jim Flaherty died suddenly at age 64, less than a month following his retirement from politics after serving as federal finance minister since 2006. Flaherty steered the Canadian economy through the global financial crisis of 2008-09 and revealed in 2013 that he was suffering from a rare and painful skin condition. A state funeral was held in Toronto on April 16.

The CBC announced it would slash 657 positions over two years to shave $130 million from its 2014-15 budget as it grappled with a shortfall it blamed on poor TV ratings, a softened advertising market and stiff competition from rival private networks.

Five young people were stabbed to death at a party near the University of Calgary celebrating the end of the school year. Matthew Douglas de Grood, the son of a veteran Calgary police officer, was charged with five counts of first-degree murder in the city’s worst mass murder.

RCMP said Nigel Wright, former chief of staff to Prime Minister Stephen Harper, would not face criminal charges in connection with the ongoing Senate expenses scandal. He resigned after it was disclosed he wrote a personal cheque for $90,000 to Mike Duffy to allow the disgraced former Conservative senator to repay disallowed housing expenses.

The Islamic extremist group Boko Haram abducted more than 300 female students from a school in northeast Nigeria. Some managed to escape while more than 200 remained in captivity.

More than 300 passengers, mostly teenagers on a school trip, were killed in the sinking of a ferry off South Korea, causing nationwide grief and fury. Officials blamed crew members’ negligence, untimely rescue efforts and corruption by the ship’s owners for the tragedy.

Canada announced it would contribute six CF-18 jet fighters to a NATO air-policing mission in response to the crisis in Ukraine.

An avalanche in April just above the base camp on Mount Everest killed 16 Nepalese guides.

Rubin “Hurricane” Carter, the middleweight title contender whose murder convictions became an international symbol of racial injustice and inspired a Bob Dylan song and a Hollywood film, died at his home in Toronto. The New Jersey native was 76.

Herb Gray, a former deputy prime minister and one of Canada’s longest-serving parliamentarians with a career that spanned nearly four decades, died in an Ottawa hospital. He was 82.

OfficeMax Grand & Toy, which had sold workplace products in Canada for over 130 years, announced it would close all of its 19 retail stores across the country, but continue selling merchandise through its website.

Celebrated Canadian opera singer Ben Heppner announced his retirement. He won three Grammy Awards and a trio of Juno Awards and was named a companion of the Order of Canada.

In a unanimous decision, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s plans to reform the scandal-plagued Senate could not be done unilaterally by the federal government but would require constitutional amendments approved by at least seven provinces representing 50 per cent of the population.

Two 20th-century popes who changed the course of the Catholic Church became saints as Pope Francis honoured John XXIII and John Paul II.

An 800-metre-wide tornado carved a 130-kilometre path of destruction through the suburbs of Little Rock, Ark., killing at least 15 people.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver banned Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, 80, for life for making racist comments in a recorded conversation. Sterling was later forced to sell the club.

Toronto mayor Rob Ford announced he was taking a leave of absence from his re-election campaign and limited mayoral duties to seek immediate help for substance abuse as media reports emerged with new drug and alcohol allegations.

Two employees at a Nanaimo, B.C., sawmill were fatally shot, two others were injured and a former co-worker arrested after he opened fire in the mill’s parking lot and continued shooting inside.

British actor Bob Hoskins, whose varied career ranged from the noir drama “Mona Lisa” to animated fantasy “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” died in hospital after a bout of pneumonia. He was 71.


Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne called a June 12 election instead of waiting to see her minority Liberal government defeated in a confidence vote on its budget.

Efrem Zimbalist Jr., who gained television stardom in the 1950s and ’60s hit “77 Sunset Strip” and later “The FBI,” died at age 95.

Shawn Atleo resigned as national chief of the Assembly of First Nations, Canada’s largest aboriginal lobby group. He had been under fire from some aboriginals for supporting the Harper government’s bill to reform First Nations education.

Montreal prosecutors announced that Montreal Maine and Atlantic Railway Ltd., two officials and an engineer of the insolvent railway would each face 47 counts of criminal negligence causing death stemming from the 2013 derailment and explosion that killed 47 people in Lac-Megantic, Que.

An explosion and fire at a coal mine in western Turkey killed 301 workers, making it the country’s worst mining disaster.

B.C. Premier Christy Clark formally apologized for more than 100 racist laws, regulations and policies imposed starting over 140 years ago against Chinese immigrants, calling them a stain on the province’s history.

Veteran newswoman Barbara Walters taped her final edition of “The View” to end a half-century career on television.

A Cairo court convicted ousted Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak of embezzlement of millions of dollars’ worth of state funds, sentencing him to three years in prison.

Thailand’s army seized power in a bloodless coup, dissolving the government, suspending the constitution and detaining cabinet ministers following six months of political upheaval.

Canada lost its bid to overturn a World Trade Organization ruling that Europe’s ban on seal products is justifiable.

Donald Levine, the Hasbro executive credited as the father of G.I. Joe for developing the world’s first action figure, died of cancer. He was 86.

Veteran CBC broadcaster Knowlton Nash, who spent a decade at the anchor desk of The National, died at his home in Toronto following a lengthy battle with Parkinson’s disease. He was 86.

Billionaire candy-maker Petro Poroshenko won Ukraine’s presidential election outright in the first round of balloting in the bitterly divided country.

Narendra Modi took the oath of office as India’s new prime minister. Modi’s inauguration was the first to which India invited leaders from across South Asia, including Pakistan.

Author and poet Maya Angelou, who rose from poverty, segregation and violence to become a force on stage, screen and the printed page, died at age 86.

Liberal Sen. Romeo Dallaire, best known in Canada as former commander of the U.N.’s ill-fated peacekeeping mission in Rwanda, announced he was resigning from the upper chamber to focus his attention on international humanitarian work.

Nearly a year after he ousted Mohammed Morsi, Egypt’s first freely elected president, former military chief Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi was elected president by a landslide. Egypt’s Election Commission officially announced on June 3 that el-Sissi had won with nearly 97 per cent of the vote.


King Juan Carlos, who led Spain’s transition from dictatorship to democracy but faced damaging scandals amid the nation’s financial meltdown, announced he would abdicate in favour of his more popular son. Prince Felipe assumed the throne on June 19.

A heavily armed gunman shot three Mounties dead and injured two others in Moncton, N.B. Justin Bourque, 24, was apprehended nearly 30 hours later after a manhunt that left the city at a virtual standstill.

New legislation governing prostitution was introduced that would criminalize the purchase of sex and crack down on those who reap a material benefit from prostitution. The changes followed a 2013 Supreme Court decision that found the old laws violated the rights of prostitutes.

Quebec became the first jurisdiction in Canada to allow euthanasia, adopting right-to-die legislation by a sweeping margin.

Petro Poroshenko formally took the oath of office as president in Ukraine’s capital of Kyiv.

A Walmart truck slammed into a limo bus on the New Jersey Turnpike, seriously injuring “30 Rock” star Tracy Morgan and killing fellow comedian James McNair.

Actress and civil rights activist Ruby Dee died at age 91 at her home in New York state.

Kathleen Wynne powered Ontario’s minority Liberals past a legacy of spending scandals to an unexpected majority election win and a fourth straight mandate. She became the province’s first elected female premier and Canada’s first elected openly gay premier.

The multi-party board of internal economy, which polices House of Commons spending, concluded New Democrat MPs wrongly used $1.17 million worth of free mailing privileges to send out almost two million partisan missives. The NDP launched a court challenge to overturn the board’s verdict.

Casey Kasem, radio host of the internationally syndicated “American Top 40” song countdown and the voice of animated TV characters like Scooby Doo’s sidekick Shaggy, died at age 82.

The federal government gave a conditional green light to Enbridge Inc.’s controversial $6.5-billion Northern Gateway pipeline project between the Alberta oilsands and the B.C. coast. The decision was contingent on Enbridge satisfying 209 conditions set out by a federal review panel and embarking on more consultations with affected aboriginal communities.

An Egyptian court convicted three journalists from Al-Jazeera English on terrorism-related charges, including Egyptian-Canadian Mohamed Fahmy, who was sentenced to seven years in prison. The convictions were denounced internationally as a blow to freedom of expression.

The original handwritten draft of Bob Dylan’s “Like a Rolling Stone” sold at auction for $2.045 million, including a buyer’s premium, a world record for a popular music manuscript.

Actor Eli Wallach, whose critically acclaimed career spanned more than 60 years with work in such films as “The Magnificent Seven,” “How the West Was Won” and “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly,” died at age 98.

An explosion blamed on Islamic extremists rocked a shopping mall in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja, killing 21 people.

For the second consecutive year, a Canadian was selected No. 1 in the NBA draft. The Cleveland Cavaliers chose Andrew Wiggins, 19, of Vaughan, Ont., after selecting Anthony Bennett. Wiggins’ longtime teammate growing up. in the top spot in 2013.

The Supreme Court of Canada issued a landmark ruling that granted aboriginal title to a specific tract of land. for the first time in Canadian history. to the Tsilhqot’in Nation in the B.C. Interior. The unanimous decision set a historic precedent affecting resource rights.

The Vatican’s former ambassador to the Dominican Republic, Archbishop Jozef Wesolowski, was convicted by a church tribunal of sex abuse and was defrocked, the first such sentence handed down against a top papal representative.

An Amber Alert was issued for a five-year-old boy after his mother arrived to pick him up from a sleepover at his grandparents’ home in Calgary to find all three had disappeared. On July 15, police announced Douglas Garland, 54, was formally charged with first-degree murder in the deaths of Alvin and Kathryn Liknes, and second-degree murder in the death of Nathan O’Brien.


Former Soviet foreign minister Eduard Shevardnadze died at age 86. He helped topple the Berlin Wall and end the Cold War, but as the leader of post-Soviet Georgia was chased out of his parliament and forced into retirement in 2004.

Pope Francis begged forgiveness in his first meeting with several victims of clergy sex abuse and vowed to hold bishops accountable for their handling of pedophile priests.

A judge approved a $29-million settlement between the Nova Scotia government and alleged survivors of abuse at the Nova Scotia Home for Colored Children, ending a nearly 15-year legal battle.

Israel began an offensive that would last 50 days against what it said were Hamas-linked targets in Gaza. It launched thousands of airstrikes and began a ground offensive July 17, while Gaza militants fired several thousand rockets at Israel. More than 2,100 Palestinians were killed, the vast majority civilians, according to U.N. figures. Sixty-six soldiers and six civilians were killed on the Israeli side.

Modeling agency founder Eileen Ford, who launched the careers of Candice Bergen, Lauren Hutton, Jane Fonda and countless others, died at age 92.

Just shy of his 16th birthday, Canadian Shawn Mendes became the youngest artist to debut in the top 25 on Billboard’s Hot 100 when “Life of the Party” entered at No. 24.

Tommy Ramone, drummer and co-founder of the seminal punk band The Ramones and the last surviving member of the original group, died at age 65.

The Church of England overwhelmingly voted to allow women to become bishops.

Texas blues legend Johnny Winter, known for his lightning-fast blues guitar riffs and his collaborations with the likes of Jimi Hendrix and childhood hero Muddy Waters, died in Zurich while on a European tour. He was 70. Rolling Stone magazine named him one of the top 100 guitarists of all time.

A Malaysia Airlines passenger plane carrying 298 people, including one Canadian, was shot down by a surface-to-air missile over a rebel-held area in eastern Ukraine. Both the government and the Russian-backed separatists fighting in the region blamed each other for downing the aircraft.

The RCMP laid 31 charges of fraud, breach of trust and bribery against suspended senator Mike Duffy involving his claims for living expenses, claims for travel expenses unconnected with Senate business and fraudulent contracts.

Microsoft announced the biggest layoffs in its history, saying it would cut 18,000 jobs as it streamlined its Nokia mobile device business to focus on using the Windows Phone operating system.

An Italian appeals court acquitted former premier Silvio Berlusconi in a sex-for-hire case, reversing a lower court conviction that had carried a seven-year prison sentence and a lifetime ban on holding political office.

The CFL returned to Ottawa for the first time since November 2005, and the Redblacks defeated the Toronto Argonauts in their home opener, 18-17, on a last-minute field goal.

Actor James Garner, whose career in TV and films included roles in “The Rockford Files” and his Oscar-nominated “Murphy’s Romance,” died at age 86.

Hasibullah Yusufzai of British Columbia was charged under a new anti-terrorism law for allegedly leaving the country to join Islamist fighters in Syria. It was the first time the recent Criminal Code legislation was used as a tool to fight terrorism.

A plane making a second landing attempt in stormy weather crashed short of an airport on the small Taiwanese resort island of Penghu, killing 48 people.

An Air Algerie jetliner crashed in a rainstorm in a desolate region of restive northern Mali, killing all 116 aboard, including five Canadians.

Mohamed Hassan Hersi, the first Canadian convicted under a law criminalizing attempts to join a terrorist group, was handed the maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.

An eight-months pregnant woman and her two young children were among six hurt when a reversing car crashed through the front doors of a busy Costco store in London, Ont. A six-year-old girl died in hospital and her mother underwent an emergency C-section, but the newborn died a week later. Ruth Burger, 65, of London, was charged with two counts of criminal negligence causing bodily harm and two counts of criminal negligence causing death.

The Supreme Court of Canada ruled that confessions extracted through so-called Mr. Big police sting operations must be regulated more carefully in order to be admissible in court. Nelson Hart of Newfoundland and Labrador was subsequently released after nine years behind bars in the 2002 drowning deaths of his twin three-year-old girls and murder charges against him were dropped for lack of evidence.


A 6.1-magnitude earthquake struck China’s mountainous farming region of Ludian county, killing 589 people and injuring 2,400 others.

A massive tailings pond breach at Imperial Metals’ Mount Polley Mine in central B.C. sent 10 million cubic metres of water and 4.5 million cubic metres of toxic silt into Polley and Quesnel lakes. It prompted a week-long ban on drinking or bathing in water from surrounding lakes and river.

James Brady, the press secretary who survived a devastating head wound in the 1981 assassination attempt on U.S. President Ronald Reagan and undertook a personal crusade for gun control, died at age 73.

In co-ordination with the U.S. and European Union, Canada slapped fresh sanctions and travel bans on several top politicians in Russia over the crisis in Ukraine. Moscow countered the next day with a 12-month ban of agricultural products from countries that imposed sanctions on Russia.

Alberta’s auditor general concluded former premier Alison Redford and her office used taxpayer money inappropriately, citing her use of government aircraft for personal and partisan use.

The World Health Organization declared the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, which had killed at least 4,000 people, to be an international public health emergency that required an extraordinary response to stop its spread.

U.S. fighter jets launched the first airstrikes on ISIL artillery in Iraq, carrying out President Barack Obama’s promise of military force to counter the advancing Islamic extremists.

Egypt’s highest administrative court dissolved the Freedom and Justice Party of the banned Muslim Brotherhood and ordered its assets liquidated in the latest move against the 86-year old Islamist group.

Unarmed black teenager Michael Brown was fatally shot by a white police officer in Ferguson, Mo., igniting days of heated protests as county police used military-style tactics to control crowds. On Nov. 24, a grand jury decided not to indict Officer Darren Wilson, sparking more protests and violence.

Robin Williams, the Academy Award winning actor and comic superstar, committed suicide at his home in the San Francisco Bay area. He was 63.

Ottawa said it would donate up to 1,000 doses of a made-in-Canada experimental Ebola vaccine to help in the West African outbreak.

The multi-party board that polices House of Commons spending concluded 23 NDP MPs improperly used their parliamentary budgets to pay the salaries of employees in satellite offices in Montreal, Quebec City and Toronto over the past three years. They were ordered to repay untold millions.

Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer was officially named the new owner of the Los Angeles Clippers after a California court confirmed the authority of Shelly Sterling, on behalf of the Sterling Family Trust, to sell the NBA franchise for a record $2 billion.

Lauren Bacall, the sultry-voiced actress who starred on screen with Humphrey Bogart in “To Have and Have Not” and “The Big Sleep” and off screen in one of Hollywood’s most storied marriages, died at age 89.

Quebec superstar Celine Dion announced she was suspending all of her show business activities. including her lucrative Las Vegas residency and a fall Asian tour. to focus on her family and ailing husband Rene Angelil, who underwent surgery a year earlier to remove a cancerous tumour.

Canadian pop star Justin Bieber pleaded guilty to lesser charges of careless driving and resisting arrest seven months after his arrest in Miami Beach following what police initially called an illegal street drag race. The plea deal allowed him to avoid a DUI conviction.

A special prosecutor approved polygamy charges against Winston Blackmore and James Oler, leaders of an isolated religious sect in Bountiful, B.C. Oler was also charged with unlawfully removing a child from Canada for sexual purposes.

The once-stellar reputation of Statistics Canada took a serious blow with the release of a corrected July jobs report showing the economy gained almost 42,000 jobs, a far cry from the paltry 200 it wrongly reported a week earlier.

Islamic State militants released a video showing the beheading of American journalist James Foley as retribution for U.S. airstrikes in Iraq.


A targeted U.S airstrike in Somalia killed al-Shabab terror group leader Ahmed Abdi Godane.

Islamic State extremists released a video showing the beheading of American journalist Steven Sotloff.

Transcontinental announced the closing of 20 publications and the sale of 14 others following the acquisition of Sun Media’s weekly newspaper portfolio in Quebec from Quebecor.

New Brunswick Mountie Cpl. Ron Francis, who suffered from PTSD but was on leave for running afoul of a policy that RCMP officers can’t smoke medicinal marijuana while in uniform, pleaded guilty to assaulting a total of four RCMP officers in two separate incidents. He was found dead in October, a month before his sentencing date.

Raucous and acid-tongued comedian Joan Rivers died at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. She was 81. Rivers had been hospitalized Aug. 28 after going into cardiac arrest in a doctor’s office following a routine procedure.

Former NHL rookie Steve Moore’s multimillion-dollar suit against Todd Bertuzzi and the Vancouver Canucks over the infamous on-ice attack in 2004 was settled shortly before it was set to go to trial. The terms of the settlement were confidential.

The U.S. and 10 of its key allies. including Canada. agreed the Islamic State group is a significant threat to NATO countries, deciding to squeeze their financial resources and to go after them with military force.

A Canadian search team solved one of the world’s great exploration mysteries with the discovery of HMS Erebus in the Queen Maud Gulf. It was one of two lost ships from Sir John Franklin’s doomed Arctic expedition during an 1845 quest for the Northwest Passage.

Royal officials announced the Duchess of Cambridge, wife of Prince William, was expecting their second child.

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford was admitted to hospital after complaining for months of abdominal pain. He was later diagnosed with a rare and agressive type of cancer. Citing his health, he withdrew his bid for re-election on Sept. 12 just ahead of an official deadline, choosing instead to run again for his old council seat.

B.C.’s Cody Legebokoff, 24, was convicted on four counts of first-degree murder in the killings of Jill Stuchenko, 35, Cynthia Maas, 35, Natasha Montgomery, 23, and Loren Leslie, 15. He was sentenced to four concurrent terms of life with no parole for 25 years.

A South African judge found double-amputee Olympian Oscar Pistorius guilty of culpable homicide in the shooting death of girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp and declared him not guilty of premeditated murder.

A Nunavut judge found former Roman Catholic priest Eric Dejaeger, 67, guilty of 24 of the more than 70 sex-related charges he faced involving Inuit children more than 30 years earlier. He had pleaded guilty to eight counts of sexual assault at the start of his trial.

The Rev. Ian Paisley, the divisive Protestant firebrand who devoted his life to thwarting compromise with Catholics in Northern Ireland only to become a pivotal peacemaker in his twilight years, died in Belfast at age 88.

Video was released showing the beheading of British aid worker David Haines. the third Westerner beheaded by Islamic State group fighters.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper said 69 Special Forces soldiers had been sent to northern Iraq to advise and assist local forces in the fight against Islamic militants known as ISIL.

Ukraine’s parliament ratified a landmark association agreement with the European Union, firmly pivoting the country toward the West and drawing a line under the issue that sparked massive protests and led to the ex-president’s ouster.

A marathon bargaining session with the help of a master mediator resulted in a six-year tentative contract aimed at ending a public teachers’ strike in B.C. that began in June. The delayed school year started Sept. 19 after the agreement with the B.C. government was ratified by teachers.

In a historic referendum that saw an unprecedented turnout, Scottish voters rejected independence 55 to 45 per cent, preventing the rupture of a 307-year union with England. Britain had promised Scotland new powers on taxes, spending and welfare.

A ceremonial opening was held for the $351-million Canadian Museum for Human Rights in Winnipeg.

The Royal Canadian Navy announced the retirement of four of Her Majesty’s Canadian Ships. Protecteur, Preserver, Iroquois and Algonquin.

NASA’s Maven spacecraft entered orbit around Mars for an unprecedented study of the red planet’s atmosphere following a 710-million-kilometre journey that began nearly a year earlier.

In an audio recording distributed on social media, Abu Muhammad Al-Adnani of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant urged supporters to kill westerners from countries including Canada, the U.S. and Europe who had joined efforts in northern Iraq, whether military or civilian.

“Animism” by Nunavut-reared throat singer Tanya Tagaq claimed the $30,000 Polaris Music Prize, given to the best Canadian album of the past year. She was the first Inuit artist to win the award.

Mount Ontake in central Japan erupted suddenly, catching mountain climbers by surprise and killing more than 50 people near its summit.

Hollywood’s serial bachelor George Clooney married human rights lawyer Amal Alamuddin in Venice, Italy.

  1. The first-degree murder trial of Luka Rocco Magnotta began in Montreal. Magnotta pleaded not guilty by way of mental disorder to premeditated murder and four other charges related to the slaying and dismemberment of Chinese student Jun Lin in May 2012.


A B.C. Supreme Court Justice found Cody Haevischer and Matthew Johnston each guilty of one count of conspiracy to commit murder and six counts of first-degree murder in the 2009 Surrey Six executions.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper laid out his case in the House of Commons for a Canadian combat mission in the Middle East, promising a fixed six-month window for airstrikes in Iraq. and possibly Syria. with no ground combat. The Conservatives used their majority to pass the motion on Oct. 7.

An Internet video purported to show an Islamic State group fighter beheading hostage Alan Henning, a British volunteer aid worker.

Paul Revere, organist and leader of 1960s rock band Paul Revere and the Raiders, died of cancer at his Idaho home. He was 76.

Jean-Claude (Baby Doc) Duvalier, whose corrupt and brutal regime in Haiti sparked a popular uprising in 1986 that sent him into a 25-year exile, died of a heart attack at his home in Port-au-Prince. He was 63.

Quebecor signed a $316 million-deal to sell Sun Media Corp.’s English-language operations to Postmedia Network Canada Corp.

U.S.-British scientist John O’Keefe and Norwegian scientists May-Britt Moser and Edvard Moser won the Nobel Prize in medicine for discovering the “inner GPS” in the brain that helps us navigate through the world.

Quebec judge Clement Gascon officially took his seat as the newest member of the Supreme Court of Canada.

Isamu Akasaki and Hiroshi Amano of Japan and U.S. scientist Shuji Nakamura won the Nobel Prize in physics for the invention of blue light-emitting diodes, a breakthrough that spurred the development of LED technology.

Patrick Modiano, 69, of France, who has made a lifelong study of the Nazi occupation and its effects on his country, won the Nobel Prize in literature.

Jan Hooks, a veteran member of the “Saturday Night Live” cast from 1986 to 1991, died after a battle with an undisclosed serious illness. She was 57.

Children’s rights activists Malala Yousafzai of Pakistan and Kailash Satyarthi of India were jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Yousafzai, a 17-year-old student and education activist, was the youngest person to receive the award.

Premier Stephen McNeil apologized to the former residents of the Nova Scotia Home for Colored Children for the abuse and neglect they faced at the Halifax orphanage. Class-action lawsuits were launched by the former residents against the home and the provincial government, which ended in settlements totalling $34 million.

Peter DeGroot was shot and killed in a confrontation with two members of an emergency response team, five days after he had exchanged gunfire with police in the small southeastern community of Slocan, B.C.

The B.C. government approved an environmental assessment certificate for the massive $8-billion Site C hydroelectric dam on the Peace River.

A judicial inquiry reported decades of incompetence, neglect, greed and dishonesty by a succession of owners, engineers and municipal officials led to the rooftop garage collapse that killed two women at the Algo Centre Mall in Elliot Lake, Ont., in June 2012.

A blizzard and avalanche at the popular Annapurna trail in Nepal’s mountainous north killed 43 trekkers, including four Canadians.

Tim Hauser, the founder and singer of the Grammy-winning vocal troupe The Manhattan Transfer, died from cardiac arrest. He was 72.

The first shipment of a made-in-Canada experimental Ebola vaccine left Winnipeg for the World Health Organization in Geneva for clinical trials.

Iconic fashion designer Oscar De la Renta, who dressed U.S. first ladies, socialites and Hollywood stars for more than four decades, died at his Connecticut home at age 82.

Quebec provincial police fatally shot a “radicalized” suspect after a brief car chase following a deliberate hit-and-run attack on two members of the Canadian Forces in front of a recruitment centre in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu. Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent, 53, later died in hospital from his injuries.

A South African judge sentenced double-amputee Olympic runner Oscar Pistorius to five years in prison for culpable homicide in the killing of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day in 2013. Prosecutors filed an appeal Nov. 4 of the manslaughter conviction and sentence.

Ben Bradlee, the hard-charging editor who guided The Washington Post through its Pulitzer Prize-winning coverage of the Watergate scandal, died at age 93.

A gunman opened fire at the National War Memorial in Ottawa, killing ceremonial Honour Guard reservist Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, 24. Michael Zehaf Bibeau then stormed Parliament Hill’s Centre Block, injuring a guard at the front doors and engaging security forces in a gunfight before being killed by sergeant-at-arms Kevin Vickers.

Winnipeg police charged Andrea Giesbrecht, 40, following the discovery of the remains of six infants in a storage unit.

A man was arrested after two Sacramento-area sheriff’s deputies were killed during a series of shootings that spanned about six hours and 50 kilometres across two counties. A third deputy was also shot and a motorist was seriously wounded during the rampage.

Musician Jack Bruce, bassist and lead vocalist of 1960s power trio Cream, died of liver disease. He was 71. He wrote many of the band’s hits, including “Sunshine of Your Love,” “White Room” and “I Feel Free.”

The CBC abruptly severed ties with “Q” radio host Jian Ghomeshi, who acknowledged he engaged in rough sex but said it was always consensual. In the following weeks, as many as nine women alleged they were victims of non-consensual violence during, or leading up to, sexual encounters with Ghomeshi.

Orbital Sciences Corp.’s unmanned commercial supply ship bound for the International Space Station exploded just six seconds after liftoff at Wallops Island, Va. It was the first catastrophic launch in NASA’s commercial spaceflight effort.

Justin Bourque, who fatally shot three Mounties and wounded two others in a June 4 shooting rampage in Moncton, N.B., was sentenced to 75 years in prison, the harshest penalty since the last state-sanctioned executions in 1962.

John Forzani, a former offensive lineman with the Calgary Stampeders who became a prominent businessman in the city after his CFL career ended, died at age 67.

The Virgin Galactic space tourism rocket known as SpaceShipTwo exploded after taking off on a test flight in Southern California’s Mojave Desert, killing the pilot and seriously injuring the co-pilot.


Two Canadian CF-18s involved in the American-led bombing campaign against the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant launched their first air strikes since deploying to the region.

Five senior cabinet ministers in Manitoba resigned, saying they had lost confidence in NDP Premier Greg Selinger’s leadership amid ongoing public anger over a 2013 hike in the provincial sales tax.

U.S. President Barack Obama faced the prospect of a turbulent final two years in office after Republicans stormed to power in the U.S. Senate and extended their majority in the House of Representatives in the mid-term elections.

Montreal-based engineering and construction company SNC-Lavalin announced a major reduction in its global workforce, with about a quarter of the planned 4,000 layoffs coming in Canada.

  1. Pte. Steven Allen, 20, died from injuries he suffered three days earlier when a lookout tower he was standing in collapsed at CFB Wainwright in Alberta.

A suicide bomber disguised in a school uniform detonated explosives at a high school assembly in the northeastern Nigerian city of Potiskum, killing at least 48 students.

Montreal music journalist Sean Michaels won the $100,000 Scotiabank Giller Prize for his debut novel “Us Conductors,” based on the life of Lev Termen, the Russian-born inventor of the theremin, one of the first electronic musical instruments.

The federal government announced people coming to Canada from Ebola-affected countries. including returning health-care workers. would need to undergo a more formal 21-day monitoring period.

South Korean ferry captain Lee Joon-seok was sentenced to 36 years in prison for negligence and abandoning passengers when his ship sank in April, causing more than 300 deaths. The court sentenced the ship’s chief engineer to 30 years in prison and 13 other crew members to up to 20 years in prison.

The European Space Agency’s Rosetta space probe successfully dropped the Philae lander on the speeding comet named 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko – a cosmic first. Unfortunately, Philae settled next to a cliff that largely blocked sunlight from reaching its solar panels. It performed a series of scientific tests and returned plenty of data before depleted batteries forced it to go silent.

The U.S. and China pledged to take ambitious action to limit greenhouse gases, aiming to inject fresh momentum into the global fight against climate change ahead of make-or-break climate talks in 2015.

A young Halifax man who pleaded guilty to making child pornography after he took a picture of an intoxicated teenager having sex at a party was given a conditional discharge and will be registered in the national DNA databank. The case captured national attention after the 17-year-old girl died following a suicide attempt. On Nov. 24, a second young man in the same case pleaded guilty to one count of distributing child pornography.

An Ontario judge ruled that the family of an 11-year-old aboriginal girl with cancer had a constitutional right to opt for traditional medicine over chemotherapy in what some observers called a landmark decision.

Glen A. Larson, a writer and producer behind such notable TV shows as the original “Battlestar Galactica,” ”Knight Rider“ and ”Magnum, P.I.,“ died of complications from esophageal cancer. He was 77.

Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson was elected for a third term. Surrey votes for Linda Hepner and Surrey First team.

Ottawa sociology professor Hassan Diab was charged with first-degree murder and other offences in France in connection with the October 1980 bombing of a Paris synagogue that left four people dead. He was extradited a day earlier when the Supreme Court of Canada announced it would not hear his appeal.

U2 frontman Bono was involved in a bike accident in New York City’s Central Park that left him with a fractured left eye socket, a fractured left shoulder blade and a fractured left elbow.

The Islamic State group beheaded Peter Kassig, releasing a video showing a masked militant standing over the severed head of a man it said was the former U.S. Army Ranger-turned-aid worker, who was seized while delivering relief supplies in Syria.

The U.S. Senate rejected a proposal to fast-track the approval of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline, only one vote short of the 60 needed to win approval for the bill.

Two Palestinian cousins armed with meat cleavers and a gun stormed a Jerusalem synagogue during morning prayers, killing four rabbis and a Druze Arab policeman and seriously injuring Canadian-Israeli citizen Howie Chaim Rotman. Police killed the attackers in a shootout.

The Buffalo area was buried under as much as two metres of snow after a blast of lake-effect weather, forcing the closure of numerous highways and roads. The storm was blamed for up to 12 deaths in western New York. Another lake-effect storm two days later dumped another half-metre, equalling the amount the region typically gets over an entire year.

Director-actor-comedian Mike Nichols who, during a career spanning more than 50 years, won an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony, died at age 83.

Merle Barwis of Victoria, who held Canada’s oldest-person title for almost two years, died just one month and one day shy of her 114th birthday.

Former NHL defenceman, longtime coach and executive Pat Quinn died in Vancouver after a lengthy illness. He was 71. Quinn’s crowning achievement was leading Team Canada to the gold medal at the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City, the country’s first men’s hockey gold medal in 50 years.

A grand jury in Ferguson, Mo., declined to indict white police officer Darren Wilson in the death of unarmed, black 18-year-old Michael Brown. a decision that enraged protesters who set fire to buildings and cars and looted businesses. Wilson resigned from the Ferguson Police Department on Nov. 29.

Former CBC radio host Jian Ghomeshi was charged with four counts of sexual assault and one charge of overcoming resistance by choking, exactly one month after he was fired from the public broadcaster over allegations of physical and sexual abuse. His lawyer said he would plead not guilty.

After 36 years, 93-year-old mayor Hazel McCallion of Mississauga, Ont., presided over her last city council meeting.

Mounties in B.C. arrested and charged Ontario-born Garry Handlen, 67, with first-degree murder in the historic deaths of two young girls. Kathryn-Mary Herbert, 11, who disappeared in Abbotsford, B.C., in 1975, and 12-year-old Monica Jack, who was last seen in Merritt, B.C., three years later.

A judge dismissed murder charges against former Egytian president Hosni Mubarak and acquitted his security chief over the killing of protesters during Egypt’s 2011 uprising.

Former governor general Michaelle Jean was named the first woman leader of la Francophonie.



The tumultuous era of scandal-plagued Rob Ford came to an end as his successor, John Tory, officially took over as mayor of Toronto.

Beloved Montreal Canadiens legend Jean Beliveau died at the age of 83. The classy centre scored 507 goals, won 10 Stanley Cups and was captain for 10 seasons before his retirement in 1971. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1972.

Amid a widening scandal over allegations of sexual abuse, comedian Bill Cosby was sued by Judy Huth, who claimed he molested her in a bedroom of the Playboy Mansion around 1974 when she was 15 years old.

A grand jury in New York City declined to indict a white police officer on criminal charges in the July chokehold death of Eric Garner, an unarmed black man who was stopped on suspicion of selling loose, untaxed cigarettes. It triggered protests around the country and sent thousands into New York’s streets.

An RCMP officer was shot and critically wounded during a pre-dawn traffic stop in Kamloops, B.C. A 36-year-old man who was known to police was arrested by members of an emergency-response team after a 12-hour manhunt.

NASA’s new Orion spacecraft made a “bullseye” splashdown in the Pacific following a 4 1/2-hour dramatic unmannned test flight that took it to a zenith height of 5,800 kilometres and ushered in a new era of human exploration aiming for Mars.

American photojournalist Luke Somers and South African teacher Pierre Korkie, held by al-Qaida militants in Yemen, were killed in a failed U.S. rescue attempt.

Canada’s new prostitution laws took effect, criminalizing the purchase of sex while providing some legal immunity for sex workers themselves.

A slickly produced video was released featuring a man who said he was a Canadian urging Muslims to either move to the Islamic State or launch attacks against Canadians at home, similar to those carried out in October in Ottawa and Quebec. The man was identified in media reports as John Maguire, a former University of Ottawa student who converted to Islam and became radicalized before leaving Canada in 2013.

Former Quebec lieutenant-governor Lise Thibault pleaded guilty to fraud and breach of trust. Charges were laid after a joint federal-provincial auditors general report suggested more than $700,000 in alleged improper expenses had been claimed.

Senate investigators say the United States brutalized scores of terror suspects with interrogation tactics that turned secret CIA prisons into chambers of suffering and did nothing to make America safer after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. The Senate Intelligence Committee’s torture report accused the CIA of misleading its political masters about what it was doing with its “black site” captives and deceiving Americans about the effectiveness of its techniques.



The Canadian Press

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