October 20, 2009

Pt 1: Afghanistan Election - It was two months ago today that Afghans headed to the polls to elect a President. In just over two weeks, it seems the're going back to the polls. Afghanistan's Independent Elections Commission has just ordered a run-off election for Saturday November 7th. President Hamid Karzai seems to agree. He's called that decision legal and constitutional. We reached freelance reporter Sarah Davison in Kabul.

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Pt 2: The Philosophy of the Pig - We have two stories for you ... two stories that our Ottawa producer swears are connected. The first is about saving heritage breeds of livestock ... breeds that were developed over the centuries and then abandoned for something else, something leaner or fatter or faster to raise.

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Pt 3: People Smuggling - Seventy-six men believed to be Tamils from Sri Lanka are awaiting their fates in Vancouver. They were traveling in a ship seized off the coast of British Columbia on Saturday. They are thought to have paid about $45,000 to come to Canada ... as part of an international people-smuggling operation that may have been run by an Indonesian ship's captain.

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It's Tuesday October 20th.

A ship carrying dozens of unidentified men seized off the coast of B.C. might be part of a massive, international people-smuggling operation run by an Indonesian ship captain.

Currently, the ship captain insists he was just trying to get his own reality tv show.

This is The Current.


Afghanistan Election - Freelance Reporter

It was two months ago today that Afghans headed to the polls to elect a President. In just over two weeks, it seems the're going back to the polls. Afghanistan's Independent Elections Commission has just ordered a run-off election for Saturday November 7th. President Hamid Karzai seems to agree. He's called that decision legal and constitutional. We reached freelance reporter, Sarah Davison in Kabul.

Afghanistan Election - Kippen

All of this comes in the wake of yesterday's release of findings that show a high percentage of fraud in the first round of voting. Those findings come from the Electoral Complaints Commission and its chair is Canadian Grant Kippen. He was in Kabul.

One of the groups monitoring the August election was Democracy International. CEO Glenn Cowan thinks there is an issue of legitimacy here. We heard briefly from him.

Afghanistan Election - Pazira

To get a sense of how regular Afghans view all this, we reached Nelofer Pazira. She's an Afghan-Canadian writer and documentary film maker. She left Afghanistan last Friday. We reached here in Ottawa.



 

The Philosophy of the Pig

We have two stories for you ... two stories that our Ottawa producer swears are connected. The first is about saving heritage breeds of livestock ... breeds that were developed over the centuries and then abandoned for something else, something leaner or fatter or faster to raise.

The other story is about a policy advisor in Ottawa who lost her job. Neil Morrison has combined the two into one documentary. It's called The Philosophy of Pig.



 

People Smuggling - Michael Lin

Seventy-six men believed to be Tamils from Sri Lanka are awaiting their fates in Vancouver. They were traveling in a ship seized off the coast of British Columbia on Saturday. They are thought to have paid about 45,000 dollars to come to Canada ... as part of an international people-smuggling operation that may have been run by an Indonesian ship's captain.

This is hardly the first time that a boatload of human cargo has arrived on Canadian shores. On August 11th, 1999, Michael Lin arrived in Canada as a starving, seasick 17-year-old who had spent two months on a ship sailing from China. He's now the part owner of Stonehenge Marble and Granite Limited in Port Coquitlam, BC.

He began a whole new journey when he stepped off that boat. He managed to apprentice as a stone worker for a time something that later allowed him to start his own business. He was one of 599 people in four ships that sailed from Fujian Province in China. Just under forty people were permitted to remain in Canada. Another 330 were deported. Most of the rest are unaccounted for.

People Smuggling - History

Irvin Abella and Ali Kazimi have each looked back over Canada's history of dealing with migrants. And they have each found themselves drawn to a particular case. Irvin Abella is a Professor of History at York University and the co-author of None is Too Many: Canada and The Jews of Europe, 1933 to 1948.

And Ali Kazimi is a film-maker whose documentary, Continuous Journey, tells the story of hundreds of South Asian men from British India who were turned away from Canada in 1914. They were both in Toronto.

People Smuggling - Context

The arrival of the seventy-six men off the shores of British Columbia will likely put Canada's immigration and refugee policies in the spotlight again. For her thoughts on where those policies stand now, we were joined by Sharry Aiken. She is a Professor of Law at Queen's University and the Past President of the Canadian Council for Refugees. She was in Toronto.



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