Barcelona Iniesta vows ‘good news’ is coming on Barcelona contract extension Ben Spratt Last updated 2 years ago 17:07 28/9/2017 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Getty Images Barcelona Sporting CP v Barcelona UEFA Champions League Primera División After weeks of speculation, the World Cup-winning midfielder has teased that positive progress is being made regarding renewal talks at Camp Nou Barcelona captain Andres Iniesta has suggested that “good news” will soon be on its way regarding a contract renewal at Camp Nou.The Spain international, who made his Barca debut in 2002, is keen to extend his lengthy stay at the club, with a new deal mooted in recent weeks.Barcelona 6/10 to win La Liga Article continues below Editors’ Picks Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. And, following his side’s 1-0 Champions League win at Sporting CP, Iniesta told reporters that he was expecting positive movement on that front.”I think the good news is coming soon,” the midfielder said.Victoria durísima!! Gran trabajo!!! Volvemos felices a casa!!! Força Barça!!! pic.twitter.com/kMcqUKJxcI— Andrés Iniesta (@andresiniesta8) September 27, 2017On a hard-fought win, which keeps Barca top of Group D, Iniesta added: “It’s the Champions League – the matches away from home are always difficult and this has been one more example.”I think [Sporting] have great players in midfield, they attack well, they combine well. We have tried to counter it in the best way we could and we have done it to a great extent.”In general terms, we have played a fairly complete game.”Barca have made a fine start in La Liga this term, winning their first six matches to pull four points clear at the summit.
OTTAWA – The federal government has agreed to expand the scope of a landmark deal to financially compensate members of the military and other agencies who were investigated and sometimes fired because of their sexual orientation.A revised version of the class-action settlement over the so-called “gay purge” explicitly includes people whose careers suffered as early as 1955 — seven years prior to a previously agreed date.In addition, the settlement creates an “exceptions committee” that will look case-by-case at those who might otherwise fall through the cracks.They could include people affected before 1955, individuals who worked for agencies not listed in the settlement, or those who were targeted even though they were not gay or lesbian.An agreement in principle in the court action was drafted last November, just days before the government delivered a sweeping apology for decades of discrimination against members of the LGBTQ community.However, a number of people seeking redress fell outside the parameters of the original agreement, including some who were singled out by superiors because they were perceived as gay, or because they vocally stuck up for colleagues, said Doug Elliott, a lawyer behind the class action.“Those people were really victims of the purge, too and we felt if there were such people that they ought to be included, because even though they were not gay, they were suffering because of this anti-gay policy,” Elliott said in an interview.A former Air Force member who was investigated in the late 1950s and forced out in the early ’60s represents one of the earliest cases in the legal action, Elliott said.“I really didn’t expect there was going to be anyone around who was going to put their hand up from that earlier period and say that they had been purged. But a few elderly people did come forward.”The settlement, still subject to Federal Court approval, includes at least $50 million and up to $110 million in total compensation, with eligible individuals each expected to receive between $5,000 and $175,000.The first phase of a program to notify potential members of the class action is underway.Hundreds of people have already joined, and Elliott has a “working estimate” of up to 2,000 participants. “I expect that it will probably exceed a thousand. But how far north of that it will go is very difficult to predict.”Elliott said one theory holds that gay people don’t like to admit they were in the military and military members don’t like to acknowledge they’re gay, something called the “double-closet phenomenon.”In addition, the AIDS epidemic took its toll on many members of the gay community.“Despite the government’s great efforts to create a list of every homosexual in Canada, they never succeeded,” Elliott said with a chuckle.“So we don’t know who these people are. Even if we knew who they are, we don’t know how many of them are still alive. And among those who were affected and still alive, we don’t know if they will step forward.”He personally knows two eligible men who have not yet signed on.“And I think in their cases, that it’s because this is a horrible experience they had in their past. No amount of money in the world is enough to make them revisit it, they just want to forget about it.”There will also be several reconciliation and remembrance measures, including a national monument, a Canadian Museum for Human Rights exhibition, declassification of archival records and a citation akin to a medal for affected people.Elliott said the citation is extremely important to many of his clients, particularly former Armed Forces members.“When they went into the military, that’s one of the things they were looking forward to, was earning a medal one day,” he said. “And then they never got a chance. So this is some small recognition of the fact that they too served and that they suffered in the service of their country.”The Liberal government has also introduced legislation that would allow people to apply to have their criminal convictions for consensual sexual activity between same-sex partners erased from the public record.The Expungement of Historically Unjust Convictions Act would provide for the destruction and removal of records for the offences of gross indecency, buggery and anal intercourse.At a Senate committee studying the bill Wednesday, Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale called it an “important and overdue step in the right direction.”— Follow @JimBronskill on Twitter
HALIFAX – Jean Chretien has ignored a letter from Nova Scotia’s lobbyist registrar asking if he lobbied the premier about a port proposal during a recent closed-door session that drew a citizen complaint.The registrar of lobbyists, Hayley Clarke, asked the former prime minister about a March 21 meeting in Halifax with Premier Stephen McNeil and Transport Minister Geoff MacLellan.Chretien is an international adviser to Sydney Harbour Investment Partners, which has been seeking investor support for the Cape Breton container port project. Chretien is not a registered lobbyist in Nova Scotia, and both McNeil and MacLellan denied he lobbied them or discussed the port project.Following a complaint from a retired union activist, Clarke sent Chretien a letter providing information about the province’s lobbying act, and asked for a response by the end of April.“We ask they (Chretien) review their activities to ensure compliance and provide a response advising as to the results of their review within 30 days,” says a March 29 letter to the complainant, John McCracken.No response came, Clarke’s spokesperson told The Canadian Press.“There has been no response to the Nova Scotia’s Registrar of Lobbyists inquiry of the Hon. Jean Chretien following a complaint received from a member of the public,” Marla MacInnis said.The Canadian Press sent written requests to Chretien and to an associate who often arranges media interviews but received no response.Duff Conacher, the co-founder of Democracy Watch, said Chretien needs to clear up the issue before he resumes conversations with politicians in the province.“He should be showing and documenting that he has not crossed the line that the law establishes that requires registration. If he’s not going to show the registrar, then the police should give him a call,” said Conacher.McCracken said Chretien’s lack of response demonstrates that Nova Scotia’s lobbying law is “toothless.”He said his only option now would be to take his complaint about Chretien to the police, a move that he’s contemplating.“It confirms everything I predicted at the time when I got my response from the registrar, which was that they (the registrar) were going to contact him and he (Chretien) was going to laugh in their face,” he said in an interview.The day before the meeting, Chretien had attended a conference in Sydney and told reporters about his role as an international adviser to Sydney Harbour Investment Partners.When a Cape Breton Post reporter asked Chretien how he’d market the Sydney container port to the premier, the former prime minister said he felt the premier would be in favour of a provincewide approach to container ports.“He (McNeil) said, ‘He’s for the development and he wants development in Nova Scotia,’ and he’s the premier of all Nova Scotia. And there always competition between one city and another. But all the cities in Nova Scotia are in Nova Scotia, but he is the premier of Nova Scotia.”The provincial Liberal government has been cautious about the Sydney proposal, as a 2016 study prepared for the province and the federal Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency recommended against public money for a terminal that would compete against the Halifax port.As the interview continued, Chretien was asked if the province should invest money in the container port proposal, and he replied: “I hope so.”When asked about another project along the Strait of Canso trying to develop a port, Chretien replied, “So what? I’m working for Sydney. I’m not working for them.”Clarke has previously made clear there was little she could do to probe what had occurred.“The role of the Registrar of Lobbyists is to administer the Registry of Lobbyists. The Registrar is not an enforcement agent,” MacInnis confirmed in an email to The Canadian Press.A number of other provincial jurisdictions, including Ontario, and the federal commissioner of lobbying can probe citizen complaints and recommend police investigations.Conacher said in an interview that he’d encourage McCracken to bring the media reports regarding Chretien’s actions to the attention of police.“He can say ‘There’s this story, and there’s this law, can you please check into what the (former) prime minister’s been doing,’” he said.Conacher said in most jurisdictions, commissioners do an investigation and bring the matter to police if it’s considered a crime was potentially committed. He said Nova Scotia should set up a similar system.“They often do the front-line investigation that police don’t have time to do,” he said.Nova Scotia legislation provides for a fine of not more than $25,000 for anyone who lobbies without registering first.McCracken said he would have been content had Chretien registered as a lobbyist after his complaint, and agreed to follow the rules of lobbyists going forward.These include requirements such as documenting if he has lobbied provincial politicians or government agencies on behalf of his client.Nova Scotia’s lobbyist registration law says lobbying includes communicating with a public servant “in an attempt to influence” the awarding of a contribution on behalf of government.One of the definitions of a lobbyist under the Nova Scotia law is “an individual paid to lobby on behalf of a client.”A person who does this is required to disclose their name, address and the name of the company they’re lobbying on behalf of, and the “subject matter” of their lobbying and who they’ve contacted.