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Jayme Pasieka makes first court appearance

EDMONTON – The man accused in a deadly stabbing spree in west Edmonton Friday made his first court appearance Monday morning.

Jayme Pasieka, 29, appeared in an Edmonton courtroom via Closed Circuit Television (CCTV). He was handcuffed and wore an orange jumpsuit. He appeared calm throughout the appearance.

The case was put over until May 5 as lawyers need time to go over the events that led to Pasieka being charged.

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  • Charges laid against Jayme Pasieka in west Edmonton warehouse stabbing

  • Two killed, at least four injured at west Edmonton warehouse; suspect captured

    Raw video: stabbing suspect captured

“The Edmonton Police Service is still gathering up all the information, we’re still going to be putting together our case and our disclosure package, so there wasn’t any point for putting it over for any shorter time,” explained

Kimberly Goddard, one of the two Assistant Chief Crown Prosecutors on the case.

“In the interim, we’re also going to discuss with the Edmonton Police Service whether there’s going to be additional charges.”

Pasieka has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder, one count of attempted murder, two counts of possession of an offensive weapon and one count of aggravated assault.

“Given the large number of civilian witnesses and the large amount of evidence we have, it could be a very complicated case in terms of length of time and making sure that we put it all together properly,” added Goddard.

“But, we’re prepared to put as many resources as much time as required to make sure that this case goes off without a hitch.”

Pasieka is being held separate from the general population at the Edmonton Remand Centre.

The charges come after two people were killed Friday afternoon, and four others injured, after Pasieka allegedly walked into the building armed with two knives and stabbed at least six people.

“Obviously, there’s a lot of things that have happened, there’s a lot of people that want some answers, there’s a lot of information that’s come from the police interviews – people that are apparent witnesses – so this is going to take some time,” said Pasieka’s lawyer, Brandon Tralenberg.

The victims have been identified by police as 50-year-old Fitzroy Harris and 41-year-old Thierno Bah.

“As can be expected, the families are devastated that their loved ones would go to work and then never come home,” Det. Bill Clark said.

Above: Ross Neitz reports on the police investigation into a stabbing spree that left two people dead Friday

Dozens of officers were called to the Loblaw warehouse at 161 Street and 121 A Avenue just after 2:00 p.m.

“When our members arrived there, it was complete chaos,” Clark said Saturday morning.

“There were people running around all over the place. There were numerous persons injured.”

READ MORE: Two killed, at least four injured at west Edmonton warehouse; suspect captured

When police arrived, Harris was found dead inside the warehouse. Bah was transported to an ambulance outside the building, where he was declared dead.

Four other men – aged 21, 29, 34 and 44 – were taken to hospital. Police say the 34-year-old man was in very serious condition, with multiple stabs wounds. His condition has since improved and while he is still in hospital, he is expected to recover.

The suspect fled the scene, and after an intense manhunt, the man was arrested in the area of 39 Street and 74 Avenue shortly after 5:00 p.m.

WATCH: Edmonton police capture suspect in deadly stabbings

“He is well-known to the people inside,” Clark said of Pasieka. “He was also known to the victims.”

Clark said Pasieka was arrested without incident and has since been cooperative with police.

“He has been very calm, very polite.”

Police say there’s still no indication of what motivated him.

“At this time we have no information to suggest he had any assistance or any help from anyone else,” Clark said. “We believe he acted alone. But again, we’ll flesh that out in the coming days.”

Watch below: Staff Sgt. Bill Clark with the Edmonton Police Service Homicide Section addresses the media Saturday morning

Saturday morning Loblaw senior management was at the west-end warehouse.

On Monday, the company’s VP of Corporate Affairs and Communication, Kevin Groh, released this statement:

“We are in the process of re-opening our Edmonton distribution centre on a modified basis. We had initially anticipated a longer closure, but were advised to open by professional grief counselors, based on their belief in the value of work and workplace interactions following traumatic events of this sort. Colleagues were welcomed back Sunday to gather and for counseling. They were given the option to work, though most chose only to assemble and talk. Counseling continues both at and away from our facility.” 

Edmonton Police Chief Rod Knecht will provide an update on the case at 4:45 on Monday afternoon.

©2014Shaw Media

BLOG: Who does Putin think he’s protecting Crimea from? – National

Above: World leaders including Prime Minister Stephen Harper are telling Russia to get out of Ukraine. Paul Johnson reports reports from Simferopol. (Mar. 2)

I’ll be the first to tell you I’m no expert on Russia-Ukraine relations, or of the particular experience that Russian speaking Ukrainians have of living in this country.

But something sure feels strange about Vladimir Putin’s justification of his invasion of Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula.

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READ MORE: Russia demands Ukraine return to unity gov’t; pro-Russian soldiers hold Crimean ferry

It goes something like this: a new group of Western leaning leaders has taken control in Kyiv and former pro-Moscow Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych fled the country to hide out in Russia.

Putin said this situation means he needs to use Russia’s military to “protect” Ukraine’s substantial Russian speaking population in this now Western-tilting country.

But “protect” from whom?

WATCH: Prime Minister Stephen Harper slammed Russia’s actions Monday, saying they put the country “on a course of diplomatic and economic isolation”

Many years ago, one of my first foreign assignments as a journalist was covering the Bosnian war for Canadian radio.

You’ll remember the awful atrocities of that time: ethnic cleansing, mass graves, utter hatred pitting Serb against Muslim against Croat.

Foreign military intervention, including a force from Canada, was necessary to curtail the killing.

I met and interviewed a lot of people in that tragic place and it left with a new understanding of how ethnic nationalism can trigger the worst in human behaviour.

Fast forward to 2014 and I’m looking around me to see if, as Putin seems to suggest, this could be a repeat of that awful chapter in human history.

Looking around in Kyiv, and now down in the Crimean city of Simferopol, I’m not quite convinced.

Sure, it seems that Ukrainians of Russian descent seem more comfortable speaking Russian and identify more with Moscow, than say Brussels. But, it just doesn’t feel like there is the kind of civilizational hatred that could trigger another Bosnia.

One startling eye-opener was the time I spent in Kyiv’s Independence square, the very seat of the revolution.

READ MORE: UN Security Council to hold open meeting on Ukraine crisis

There I met many Ukrainians of Russian descent, who told me how mad they were at Putin for violating Ukraine’s sovereignty by deploying his military here.

They spoke to me in Russian, didn’t seem the slightest bit afraid of being a victim of the “far right neo-fascists” that Russian television has been talking about, and none of them said they’d ever been threatened for being a Russian speaker in Ukraine.

So while you can appreciate there are a lot of people of Russian descent here who might prefer to be part of Russia, was this the kind looming humanitarian disaster that required a military invasion?

Remember when the former USSR invaded Afghanistan in 1979? That too, I recall, was justified by Moscow as the need to “protect” the regime there.

Look how that ended.

WATCH: Occupation in Crimea is ‘illegal” says Ukraine PM

If the natural course of events is for Crimea’s Russian speakers to eventually rejoin their cultural kin in Mother Russia, as the brilliant and prescient political scientist Samuel Huntington predicted (he also predicted America’s struggle with al-Qaeda years before it happened) does it necessarily mean this has to take place by force of arms, as Putin just stated with his actions?

Look at Scotland. They’re deep in the process of preparing for a referendum later this year on some kind of separation from the U.K.

It’s tense, ugly at times, and a lot of people are nervous about the outcome.

But there’s no question that this issue is going to be settled by anything other than the ballot box.

Putin seems to prefer the barrel of a rifle. I saw those guns myself, right up close today out at the Ukrainian military base he’s got surrounded.

Let’s see how that all works out.

©2014Shaw Media

BLOG: Morning News Rewind – March 3 – Saskatoon

Here’s what was on the Morning News for Monday, March 3.

Kevin learns about online fraud from an author

Okay, so, in case this was forbidden knowledge to anyone, I am a bit of a nerd. Kind of.

For a while, in my life, I was one of those guys who was actually “paid to play a videogame.” That game was World of Warcraft.

I answered an email from what I thought was a Blizzard rep, which involved going to a link and changing my password.

The crafty devils made everything look perfect on their mock-up website and within an hour, I’d lost everything.

It was, for someone who was committed (addicted) to a game and a community, one of the hardest things I’ve ever suffered through.

The thing about scams is that once you get hit, you become a self-serving sentinel of making sure it doesn’t happen again.

If you’ve never been hit by one but still worry about it, Brian Trainor’s book Stop Fraud may just be perfect for you.

Some runway hairstyles in studio with Jessica

With New York Fashion week and the Academy Awards over, chances are there are a few hairstyles that caught your attention.

That’s certainly the case for me.

Alicia and Kassy from Capelli Salon Studio picked some of the hottest trending styles and demonstrated how we can achieve them.

What I found interesting is the “wet look” that’s coming in. Watch the clip to see what I mean.

These styles are all very achievable, especially the “static look”!

Saskatoon police chief speaks with Jessica about a tragic weekend

I find it comforting that Saskatoon police are really making an effort to keep us updated on what’s going on in our city through social media.

Local cops are blogging about what’s going on out there and their experience in different cases.

We also chatted about Saskatoon’s crime rate and although there was a homicide over the weekend, the rate is dropping.

Kevin talks about taking part with Team Diabetes

I can’t run so well.

I’m learning and my cardio’s getting better, but as of yet, I wouldn’t trust myself on a course of any size bigger than “mini putt.”

Team Diabetes, however, I could get behind. Raise a little money, becoming a better athlete… it’s certainly worth considering.

Then, there’s also hanging out with Gregger from 98.3 Cool FM! What better treat exists!?

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Melissa learns about the national diving championship coming to Saskatoon

Today I had such as wonderful time learning about diving from the Saskatoon Divers Club.

Jayden is an incredibly talented young man who was also offered a scholarship from Columbia University!

I always thought diver training took place in the pool and learning that much of it happens on dry land was quite the eye opener.

You can see from the clip that gymnastics are highly incorporated.

So much athleticism is involved in making sure those dives are clean and precise.

The winter senior national diving championship begins Friday. If you would like to see some of the country’s best divers head down to the Shaw Centre.

Kevin and Jessica take a look at what to expect Tuesday on the Morning News

Alberta man charged with impaired driving in fatal collision – Edmonton

Edmonton – Grande Prairie RCMP have charged a 29-year-old man with impaired driving causing death after a truck collided with a vehicle late Friday night.

Police believe a truck was traveling on Township Road 724 near Clairmont, Alberta and attempted to turn onto Highway 2, when it collided with a Hyundai Accent.

The 49-year-old woman driving the Hyundai died at the scene, and her passenger was taken to hospital with undisclosed injuries.

The driver of the truck was not injured.

Police have charged the truck driver, Nathaniel Onezime Plamondon, with one count of impaired driving causing death and one count of driving with a blood alcohol over the legal limit.

Plamondon was released on bail and will make his first court appearance in Grande Prairie Provincial Court on Mar. 24.

The victim’s identity has not been released.

Follow @slavkornik



  • 16-year-old girl killed in hit and run in Grande Prairie

  • Grande Prairie RCMP investigate fatal collision involving pedestrian

  • UPDATE: Two killed, six injured in collision east of Grande Prairie

©2014Shaw Media

Knowing the dangers of thin ice – Toronto

TORONTO – The rescue of a woman and two children on the waters of Frenchmen’s Bay in Pickering on Sunday has safety officials sounding the alarm about venturing out on the ice in cold temperatures.

Several ice fisherman came to their rescue after the vehicle they were in broke through the ice and plunged into the icy water off Lake Ontario.

Durham police say this is the second time a car has fell through the ice at Frenchmen’s Bay this year.

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It is reported that the owner of the vehicle will also have to pay for the car removal themselves.

The Canadian Red Cross say treacherous ice conditions are a result of a number of factors including thickness, type of water, location and the time of the year.

The color of ice may be an indication of its strength with clear blue ice as the strongest.

Meanwhile, white opaque or snow ice is half as strong as blue ice. Opaque ice is formed by wet snow freezing on the ice.

Finally, grey ice is unsafe as grayness indicates the presence of water.

Environmental factors such as water depth, chemicals including salt, changing air temperature and shock waves from vehicles traveling on the ice also play a role in ice thickness.

The Canadian Red Cross has these tips for people who are stranded on thin ice and are in need of help:

When You Are Alone On Ice

Call for help.Resist the immediate urge to climb back out where you fell in. The ice is weak in this area.Use the air trapped in your clothing to get into a floating position on your stomach.Reach forward onto the broken ice without pushing down. Kick your legs to push your torso on the ice.When you are back on the ice, crawl on your stomach or roll away from the open area with your arms and legs spread out as far as possible to evenly distribute your body weight. Do not stand up! Look for shore and make sure you are going in the right direction.

When You Are With Others On Ice

Rescuing another person from ice can be dangerous. The safest way to perform a rescue is from shore.Call for help. Consider whether you can quickly get help from trained professionals (police, fire fighters or ambulance) or bystanders.Check if you can reach the person using a long pole or branch from shore – if so, lie down and extend the pole to the person.If you go onto ice, wear a PFD and carry a long pole or branch to test the ice in front of you. Bring something to reach or throw to the person (e.g. pole, weighted rope, line or tree branch).When near the break, lie down to distribute your weight and slowly crawl toward the hole.Remaining low, extend or throw your emergency rescue device (pole, rope, line or branch) to the person.Have the person kick while you pull them out.Move the person to a safe position on shore or where you are sure the ice is thick. Signal for help.

Canada 3rd highest contributing country as Kickstarter passes $1B – National

TORONTO – Crowdfunding site Kickstarter said Monday that it passed $1 billion in pledges with backing from 5.7 million people.

Canada’s $44,913,678 worth of support was the third highest amount after the U.S. ($663,316,496) and the U.K. ($54,427,475).

With more than half of the money pledged within the last year, Kickstarter is an increasingly popular option for entrepreneurs and inventors to garner funding for creative projects.

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  • Crowdfunding site Kickstarter hacked, Canadian accounts may be at risk

    More young entrepreneurs are using crowd sourcing sites like Kickstarter to raise see money for their ventures

  • Montreal startup FixMeStick raising funds on Kickstarter

The list of ventures is long and diverse: Board games, musicals, food trucks, bassoon quartets, a Veronica Mars movie, video games and more.

The online fundraising campaign has attracted donors from 224 countries and territories across all seven continents, with project owners offering rewards or special experiences in exchange for the money to bring their work to life.

The New York-based site debuted in Canada last September after its initial launch April 28, 2009. Kickstarter joined other sites like Indiegogo that already had a strong presence north of the border.

Crowdfunding has become a tool for tech startups and also more traditional businesses that may have trouble getting bank or government grant financing.

Kickstarter officially opened to Canadians Sept. 9, 2013.


According to the data on the site, it might be addictive. About 30 per cent (1,689,979) of backers fund more than one project. Then there are the super-users: Almost 16,000 people have backed more than 50 projects each.

Kickstarter also shared some fun facts: March 13, 2013 was the single day with the most pledges (who said 13 was unlucky?)

They also tried to put the $1 billion in perspective, noting it’s the same amount as NBA player Lebron James’ current contract for 50 years (imagine he got into crowdfunding?)

Aside from a hacking incident last month when two Canadian users’ accounts were affected, Kickstarter has enjoyed largely positive reviews and has been hailed as the “future of business” by Forbes magazine.

©2014Shaw Media

Selfie aside, Ellen DeGeneres fails to click with Oscar critics

TORONTO — Her 苏州纹眉学校-crashing all-star selfie notwithstanding, Ellen DeGeneres failed to generate much positive buzz as host of the Oscars.

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  • ‘Gravity’ dominates but ’12 Years a Slave’ wins Best Picture at Oscars

  • Lupita Nyong’o, Jennifer Lawrence among Oscar fashion stars

“It was a turgid affair, badly directed, poorly produced and featuring an endless string of either tired or wince-inducing moments by DeGeneres, who, by the last 30 or so minutes, seemed to have given up entirely,” opined Tim Goodman of The Hollywood Reporter.

“Even the best comedians have off nights. Even paragons of happiness and good cheer come out and tank — as DeGeneres did with her opening jokes that seemed oddly mean spirited for her (poor Liza Minnelli) and set a flat tone that the telecast could never overcome.”

Goodman did not care for the selfie stunt, either, writing that it “felt like a Samsung ad that was tricked up to feel spontaneous.”

At TIME, James Poniewozik complained the show was not “very risk-taking or memorable” and said it was a challenge to come up with a line from DeGeneres “you’re likely to remember and quote in years to come, or maybe even tomorrow.”

WATCH: The best (and worst) moments from the 86th annual Academy Awards

He compared the 86th Academy Awards show to the pizza DeGeneres served. “You weren’t going to go to your grave craving it. It was a little bland,” wrote Poniewozik. “But nobody actively hates it, and at least there was a lot of it.”

Kyle Smith of the New York Post said DeGeneres “seemed to have written her bland and tired act in the limo on the way over.”

“Ellen made the deadly error of thinking she could come up with found comedy bits simply by wandering through the auditorium chatting up stars,” Smith wrote. “She gave Bradley Cooper a couple of lottery tickets as a consolation prize for not winning Best Supporting Actor. The bit went nowhere: Cooper clearly wasn’t expecting to have to do improv comedy. Nor was Matthew McConaughey able to do her job for her when she tried to get him to riff about his weight-loss secrets for Dallas Buyers Club.”

Alan Sepinwall opined at HitFix that the Oscars show was “a long, disjointed ceremony, and what was fun and likely to endure came entirely from the winners and their speeches.”

Sepinwall noticed “a host of bad, ill-timed production choices” and complained that DeGeneres “had absolutely nothing biting or memorable to say.”

He wrote that after the monologue, “the only plan seemed to be ‘Ellen wanders through the audience; hilarity ensues.’ It did not. She committed fiercely to a bit about ordering pizza for the crowd, returning to it on multiple occasions (first to actually hand out slices, then to collect money to pay for it) and dragging each segment out long past the point at which it might have been amusing.”

Robert Bianco of USA Today gave DeGeneres slightly more credit.

“An Oscar host has to entertain viewers at home, many of whom want to see stars mocked — along with the actors in the hall — most of whom don’t want to be mocked. Go too far pleasing one side, and you lose the other,” he wrote.

“That’s a tough balancing act, but DeGeneres has mastered it. The key is that she both exudes and creates goodwill. The crowd stays with her because they know that while jabs will be thrown, no blood will be drawn.”

Across the pond, BBC reviewer Ben Sutherland wrote that “the material she was working with was less convincing than John Travolta’s hair” and “whether she had much to say that was funny was questionable.”

At Slate, Willa Paskin wrote: “After the opening monologue, Ellen spent too much time in the audience, often doing a whole lot of nothing: saying hi to famous people, copping their chairs, asking for money. These bits were dull and baggy, as was the show in general.”

READ MORE: Full coverage of the Oscars

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©2014Shaw Media

Why isn’t Canada boycotting Putin’s Paralympics? – National

ABOVE: Canadian Olympians Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir share their feelings on whether Canada should boycott the Paralympic Games 

Canada has condemned Russian President Vladimir Putin’s actions in Ukraine, recalled its ambassador and threatened to expel Russia’s – but it’s still sending Canadian athletes to participate in Putin’s Paralympic Games in Sochi.


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“Our business is sport,” the Canadian Paralympic Committee said in response to a question from Global News. “We are here to win medals.”

IN DEPTH: Ukraine crisis

Foreign Minister John Baird and Prime Minister Stephen Harper have accused Russia of violating international law, condemned Russia’s military incursions into Crimea and pulled out of June’s G8 summit in Sochi.

They’ve also withdrawn all government officials from the Paralympics. But the athletes are still going.

“The Paralympics is an opportunity to celebrate the inspiring courage and athleticism of Canadian Paralympians,” the office of the Minister of Sport, Bal Gosal, said in a statement. “We don’t want our Paralympic athletes to pay the price for this.”

While they have said that the safety of the athletes is an obvious concern, the Canadian Paralympic Committee said their main objective is to have success at the Games, not to get involved in the situation in Ukraine.

“Our athletes continue to arrive and we have not changed in our intention to compete in Sochi for a position in the top three nations in the gold medal count,” they said in a statement to Global News, adding that they will continue to monitor the situation in Ukraine and work closely with the Canadian government to ensure the safety of their athletes.

While the situation in Crimea is extremely serious and potentially violent, Peter Donnelly, Director of the University of Toronto’s Centre for Sport Policy Studies, believes pulling athletes out of Sochi would be an unnecessary move by Canadian officials.

“I suspect that if there were serious safety concerns, countries would have pulled their athletes out,” Donnelly said. “I don’t think there is anything to worry about in Sochi. Ukraine is in much more danger, clearly.”

But does sending Canadian athletes to Russia after the Canadian government has condemned Putin’s actions send a mixed message? Donnelly doesn’t believe so, agreeing that the conflict in Ukraine and the athletic festivities in Sochi are two completely separate world events.

“We’ve pretty much sent our athletes in any dictatorial society,” he said, bringing up prior Olympics that shared similar situations.

“We didn’t go in Moscow in 1980 but we went to Beijing in 2008 despite having trade issues with China,” Donnelly explained. “We also went to the Nazi Games in 1936,” he continued, referring to the 1936 Summer Olympics held under Adolf Hitler’s Nazi regime, three years before World War II.

Donnelly also mentioned that even this year, with the disagreements over LGBT regulations in Russia, there was really no question of whether or not Canada would send their Olympians. Donnelly believes it should be the same for Paralympians and attributes most of the debate about boycotting the Games to media hysteria.

Because the conflict’s centre is almost 500 km away from Sochi, Donnelly said, the safety risk to the athletes is low. Paralympians have devoted the last four years training for these events, he reasoned, and robbing them of the chance to showcase their skills would be unfair and unnecessary.

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©2014Shaw Media

Sanctions threat grows as Ukraine tensions rise – National

ABOVE: What is the world prepared to do to resolve Ukraine crisis?

LONDON – Fears of a tit-for-tat campaign of economic sanctions between Russia and Western powers over Ukraine ratcheted up Monday, with concerns largely centring on Russia’s supplies of natural gas to Europe.

But with the situation in Ukraine still fluid, it’s not clear how far either side is willing to go. While the European Union is by far the biggest consumer of Russian gas, any disruption would come at huge financial cost to Moscow.

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READ MORE: Ukraine: Russia demands that 2 warships surrender

“The world now faces a new round of geopolitical tension with potentially very high stakes,” said Jane Foley, an analyst at Rabobank International.

Over the past couple of days, the crisis has ratcheted up sharply. With Ukraine accusing Russia of declaring war by taking control of the Crimea region, investors around the world took fright on Monday, sending stock indexes lower and energy and staple foods higher.

Even if military conflict does not break out, Western powers are looking at how they can punish Russia for what they consider to be a breach of international law.

VIDEO: Ottawa says Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine is unacceptable (March 3)

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry warned Russian President Vladimir Putin that he may “find himself with asset freezes on Russian business.” European foreign ministers meeting in Brussels were considering economic sanctions, but have yet to commit to anything concrete. Some have suggested boycotting the Group of Eight summit of leaders in the Olympic host city of Sochi this summer.

The biggest economic risk revolves around Russia’s supply of natural gas. Many eastern European countries rely almost entirely on those imports and even Germany, Europe’s largest economy, gets 35 per cent of its supplies from Russia. Gazprom, the Russian energy giant, has threatened to end a cheap deal on gas it sells to Ukraine, and claimed it is owed around $1.55 billion.

MORE: UN Security Council to hold open meeting on Ukraine crisis

“No wonder Europe’s response to the on-going problems has been little more than a wag of the finger at this stage,” said Kathleen Brooks, market analyst at Forex苏州纹眉学校. “We will have to wait and see if the EU merely looks the other way when it comes to Russian-Ukrainian problems and leaves the diplomatic response to the U.S. and U.K. as they try and protect their energy supplies.”

But cutting gas supplies or raising their prices would be a dangerous game for Russia as well, whose economy relies heavily on energy exports — shares in Gazpom, the Russian energy giant, plunged 14 per cent on Monday.

Gazprom’s retreat was a large reason why Moscow’s RTS stock index slid 12 per cent while the dollar spiked to an all-time high of 37 rubles. That prompted the country’s central bank to make an emergency interest rate increase, by 1.5 percentage points to 7 per cent. Though it didn’t mention Ukraine as a motivation for the increase, the move is clearly an attempt by the Russian authorities to stem the financial outflows and support the currency.

European officials suggested Russia had more to lose in the case of an exchange of economic sanctions.

“Those consequences will be bad for everyone, but for Russia they will be far worse than for the EU,” said Dutch Foreign Minister Frans Timmermans, adding it would not be wise to threaten sanctions now.

WATCH: In a rare show of non-partisan unity, both government and opposition MPs rose in the House of Commons Monday to condemn Russia’s actions

The EU is Russia’s biggest trading partner, and Russia is the EU’s third-largest partner with imports predominantly raw materials such as oil and gas, according to the EU Commission. Russian exports to the EU totalled 213 billion euros ($293 billion at current prices) in 2012, with imports from the EU at about 123 billion euros.

Russia is the largest oil, gas, uranium and coal exporter to the EU. Gazprom exported 133 billion cubic meters of gas to the European Union in 2013. Almost half of this amount — 65 billion cubic meters— was transported through pipelines on Ukrainian soil. Germany is Russia’s single-biggest client, gobbling up some 40 billion cubic meters alone, according to Gazprom statistics.

Given Russia’s dependence on European markets, there are hopes that cool heads will prevail.

“Moscow will likely keep such disruptions to a minimum under almost all circumstances,” said Holger Schmieding, chief economist at Berenberg Bank.

Fears also grew that trade of basic agricultural products will be impacted by the crisis. Wheat futures, for example, were up over 5 per cent, while corn futures spiked more than 2 per cent.

Some experts suggest that instead of wide-ranging sanctions on industries, western powers might prefer more focused ones on individuals. Russians are huge investors outside their country. They store deposits in banks in Cyprus, control companies in the Netherlands and own property in many western capitals, notably in London. Penalties on those activities could be most effective.

“That would upset a lot of London estate agents,” said Louise Cooper, an analyst at CooperCity.

One part of Europe that is likely to suffer anyway is Ukraine, which is hanging in limbo. The country’s currency has in recent days hit a record low and the economy is estimated to be sliding into recession. The government estimates it needs $35 billion in international rescue loans over the next two years.

Ukraine’s richest man, Rinat Akhmetov, has thrown his support behind the new government that wants Russia to end its control of Crimea.

“I call upon all my fellow citizens to unity for the sake of a whole and undivided Ukraine … Our strength is in the solidarity of business, government and society,” said Akhmetov. His company alone employs 300,000 people.


Juergen Baetz in Brussels contributed to this report.

Channeling Leto, Redmayne and McConaughey: Red carpet style tips

TORONTO – Oscar winners Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto and best actor nominee Eddie Redmayne have been mainstays on the red carpet during awards season, each with their own distinct approaches to formal fashion.

Gotstyle founder Melissa Austria offers tips on how men can translate the trio’s high-end looks into their own wardrobes.


Jared Leto poses in the press room at the 20th annual Critics\’ Choice Movie Awards at the Hollywood Palladium in Los Angeles on Jan. 15, 2015.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Invision – Jordan Strauss

The actor and musician has made statement-making jackets a staple, from the white Hedi Slimane design he wore to the 2014 Oscars, to the bright blue blazer he sported to the recent Critics’ Choice Awards. Bold accents are also part of his repertoire with colourful bowties, boutonnieres and even sparkly shoes to round out red carpet looks.

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“I think with Jared Leto he’s willing to push the fashion envelope,” said Austria. “He never looks silly because he’s always incorporating great tailoring, but he always adds in another fashion directional element that makes his outfit stand out from anybody else.”

For men seeking to channel Leto’s edgy but sophisticated style, Austria suggested teaming a shorter-hemmed, coloured double-breasted jacket with what she described as the hottest trend for the season: the jogger, pointing to a style which incorporates leather.

“Although everything always has to be slim and modern, it doesn’t have to be as tight. So the joggers are really representing comfort and fashion together.”


Eddie Redmayne poses in the press room with the award for outstanding performance by a male actor in a leading role for “The Theory of Everything” at the 21st annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at the Shrine Auditorium on Sunday, Jan. 25, 2015, in Los Angeles.

Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP

The Londoner recently celebrated best actor victories at the Screen Actors Guild Awards and British Academy Film and Television Awards for his role as Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything. Redmayne has also been winning raves for his striking black-tie ensembles which incorporate lush fabrics and rich hues.

“I think the signature to Eddie Redmayne’s style is the cut of his suit,” said Austria. “I think he really understands British tailoring.

“When you’re wearing a suit that fits you properly, on a guy, nothing looks better. For him, it’s all about cut and proportion.”

For her take on Redmayne’s classic tailoring with a twist, Austria suggested a glen plaid suit featuring a mix of dark and light blue hues.

“It just gives a bit more depth and dimension to the suit, so from a distance it looks like a solid, but from up close you can notice the pattern — and that’s something that’s quintessentially British.”

Austria said a misconception about slim or modern dressing is that only men with slender builds can pull them off.

“When you wear a boxier suit, you actually look bigger. Something slightly more modern in cut, it actually makes you look trimmer. It’s a fear factor guys have to get over.”


Matthew McConaughey accepts the award for best actor in a leading role for \”Dallas Buyers Club\” during the Oscars at the Dolby Theatre on Sunday, March 2, 2014, in Los Angeles.

John Shearer/Invision/AP

Since taking home the Oscar for Dallas Buyers Club in a white Dolce & Gabbana tuxedo jacket, the reigning best actor hasn’t shied away from cranking up the colour.

McConaughey wore a dark purple tuxedo to the Golden Globes and a brassy blue blazer to the Screen Actors Guild Awards.

“Every time he’s on the red carpet he’s always wearing a tuxedo, but he’s never just wearing a typical black tuxedo,” said Austria.

The menswear expert said a key part of McConaughey’s formal wear is his love of the peaked lapel. The style is distinct from the rounded shawl collar and more common notched lapels.

“A peaked lapel is great because it really draws your attention up and makes your shoulders and your chest look bigger,” said Austria.

“I find that he’s always doing a really wide peaked lapel to make a statement. And again, it’s all about great tailoring, so suits that are immaculately cut for him, but with that touch of pizzazz by adding colour to it.”

Austria said the tux jacket’s versatility extends beyond formal occasions, suggesting men can team the blazer with a V-neck T-shirt and a pair of jeans for a night on the town.

©2015The Canadian Press

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