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In brief: Canadian officials to talk oil with China

Sun., Feb. 5, 2012

Toronto – Canada’s prime minister heads to China this week where he’ll discuss Canada’s vast oil reserves in a visit that’s being viewed as an “open warning” to the United States, which rejected a pipeline from Canada to Texas.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper will be in Beijing and two other cities for bilateral meetings with top Chinese officials, including President Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao, from Wednesday through Saturday.

Andrew MacDougall, Harper’s spokesman, said Friday it is “absolutely in Canada’s interests” to move the country’s resources to China.

Five Cabinet ministers, including the ministers of natural resources, trade and foreign affairs, will make the trip with Harper.

Harper is determined to build a pipeline to Canada’s Pacific coast after U.S. President Barack Obama rejected the Keystone XL pipeline that would have taken oil from Alberta to refineries in Texas.

More protesters die in clashes in Egypt

Cairo – The death toll from violence between protesters and Egyptian security forces climbed to 12 on Saturday, but clashes eased as weary demonstrators and riot police squared off on battered streets leading to the capital’s Interior Ministry.

Protests jolted several other cities, including Alexandria and Suez, where medical officials told Egyptian media that seven demonstrators had died since renewed violence erupted nationwide Thursday. Five people were killed in Cairo as police fired tear gas and birdshot at stone-throwing protesters.

The latest bloodshed followed a riot at a soccer match Wednesday that killed 74 people in the city of Port Said. Local hooligans attacked visiting fans of a Cairo team with knives and other weapons. Many Egyptians have accused the police and ruling military council of complicity in not preventing the melee.


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