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Frost advisory ended for Regina, Prince Albert and eastern Sask.

UPDATE: All advisories mentioned in this story have ended

A frost advisory has been issued for Regina, Prince Albert and other parts of east-central and southeastern Saskatchewan. Environment Canada says frost may damage some crops in frost-prone areas.

A ridge of high pressure will bring clearing skies and light winds to parts of the province Wednesday night into Thursday morning.

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The agency says much of the southeast corner of Saskatchewan and the northern grainbelt are likely to see frost by morning as temperatures fall to zero.

Environment Canada recommends taking preventative measures to protect frost-sensitive plants and trees.

Frost advisories are issued by Environment Canada when temperatures are expected to reach the freezing mark during the growing season, leading to potential damage and destruction to plants and crops.

For weather on the go download the Global News SkyTracker weather app for iPhone, iPad or Android.

Frost advisory ended for:

Prince Albert – Shellbrook – Spiritwood – Duck LakeMelfort – Tisdale – Nipawin – Carrot RiverHumboldt – Wynyard – Wadena – Lanigan – Foam LakeFort Qu’Appelle – Indian Head – Lumsden – Pilot ButteYorkton – Melville – EsterhazyHudson Bay – Porcupine PlainEstevan – Weyburn – Radville – MilestoneMoosomin – Grenfell – Kipling – WawotaCarlyle – Oxbow – Carnduff – Bienfait – StoughtonKamsack – Canora – Preeceville

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It’s time for another Republican debate. Here’s what you need to know

The stage is set for the next Republican presidential debate. Outspoken billionaire Donald Trump is proving more popular than ever, but the list of those posing a challenge to his White House aspirations is shifting and this debate could change the race — a race that is more than 400 days from its finish.

The Republican candidates will face off on Wednesday, in a debate hosted by CNN at the Ronald Regan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California.

This time, there will be more candidates taking part in the main prime time debate and fewer in the earlier debate for those who don’t have the public support but still have their hats planted in the presidential hopeful ring — often referred to in the media as the “Happy Hour” or “kids’ table” debate.

Here’s what you need to know about the debate and what’s changed since the last one.

Donald Trump is even further ahead

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump waves to the crowd as he leaves a rally organized by Tea Party Patriots in on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2015.

Carolyn Kaster/AP Photo

As with last month’s debate, Trump will stand centre stage when the debate gets underway Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET.

WATCH: Donald Trump on how great he’s doing in polls, lack of positive media coverage

Three polls released in the lead up to the CNN debate show Trump remains, at this point, the man to beat for the Republican nomination.

Washington Post/ABC News poll published Monday showed support for Trump hitting a new high, with 33 per cent of Republicans and “Republican-leaning independents” backing the former reality TV star — a 9 per cent rise from a poll conducted ahead of the Fox News debate on Aug. 6.

READ MORE: Trump calls U.S. ‘a dumping ground for the rest of the world’

A second poll released Monday, by Monmouth University, also gave the billionaire a wide lead, with the support of 28 per cent of Republican or “likely Republican” voters in the key state of New Hampshire.

And even in a New York Times/CBS News poll out Tuesday that put Trump slightly lower at 27 per cent support nationally, he’s still several points ahead of his closest rival.

Ben Carson moves closer to centre stage

In this Aug. 27, 2015 file photo, Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson speaks in Little Rock, Ark. August is typically one of the worst fundraising months for any politician. But it was Ben Carson’s best yet.

Danny Johnston/AP Photo

Trump was flanked by rivals Jeb Bush, the former governor of Florida, and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker during the last debate, but their political fortunes have lost some luster since that time.

Bush will be at Trump’s side once again, but lagging behind in third place according to the Washington Post/ABC News poll, with just 8 per cent support, and further behind in the Monmouth University poll, tied for fifth place with 7 per cent.

The change is not just due to Trump but a surge by fellow political outsider Ben Carson, a retired neurosurgeon who was the first person to separate conjoined twins who were joined at the head.

Carson had single-digit support going into the Fox News debate, but still made it to the main stage with the other Top 10 candidates. This time, he’s solidly in second place.

Tuesday’s New York Times/CBS News poll showed Carson is just 4 percentage points behind Trump, with 23 per cent support among Republicans nationally.

The Washington Post/ABC News and the Monmouth University polls also indicated a growing number of Republicans and Republican-oriented voters are getting behind the former director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital, garnering 20 per cent and 17 per cent support in the respective polls.

And if an earlier Monmouth University poll is any indication, Carson is, at this point, Trump’s biggest threat.

READ MORE: Donald Trump says he has no problem apologizing ‘if he’s ever wrong’

Poll results released Aug. 31 put Carson and Trump neck-and-neck in Iowa, where primary and caucus season kicks off on Feb. 1, 2016.

Carly Fiorina gets a spot in prime time and has Trump in her sights

Republican presidential candidate Carly Fiorina, the former Hewlett-Packard chief executive waves as she and supporters march in the Labor Day parade Monday, Sept. 7, 2015, in Milford, N.H.

Jim Cole/AP Photo

Like Carson, former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina’s star began shining brighter after the previous debate. In fact, Fiorina’s performance in the early debate — she didn’t have the support to make it to the main debate at that time —was considered among the best of the bunch.

Her performance earned her some gains in the polls, enough to warrant her becoming the 11th person on the stage. There should be 10, but thanks to a lack of polls in the weeks following the Fox News debate, Fiorina was able to edge her way in with an average of 2.2 per cent support from 14 polls over two months.

But the sole woman bidding for the GOP nomination has moved ahead of some of the Republican heavyweights she’s challenging: the Monmouth University poll has her tied with Jeb Bush for fifth place in New Hampshire while the Washington Post/ABC News poll has her at 2 per cent support, ahead of Walker and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.

READ MORE: Most Canadians would vote Democrat, Trump first choice among Republican candidates: poll

Fiorina might not be a threat to Trump, but the two candidates have been engaged in a pre-debate war of words in recent days.

Trump took what some saw as a sexist jab at the businesswoman, asking: “Would you vote for that? Can you imagine that, the face of our next president?”

But, Fiorina said she’s ready to take on “the entertainer who’s running for office.”

WATCH: ‘I have such respect for women’: Donald Trump on how he cherishes females

The ‘kids’ table’ gets smaller

With Fiorina moving into the main debate, the slate of also-running presidential hopefuls taking part in the earlier debate was already down by one. But that crowd shrunk even further with former Texas Gov. Rick Perry dropping out of the race altogether.

Perry was in the early debate last time and with less than 2 per cent support by the Thursday deadline, he called it quits.

He was, however, at the front of the pack that was trailing behind. Now taking the stage at 6 p.m. ET Wednesday are former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, former New York Gov. George Pataki and South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham.

And not taking the stage at all is 16th Republican candidate Jim Gilmore. The former governor of Virginia took part in the early Fox News debate, despite only jumping into the race just one week earlier. With less than 1 per cent support, he didn’t qualify to take part in the CNN debate.

Also taking part in the primetime debate are Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, Kentucky congressman Rand Paul, Ohio Gov. John Kasich, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.

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Will the Liberals make apartment-hunting easier?

The Liberal Party is getting into the rental market.

Leader Justin Trudeau announced Wednesday he’ll eliminate the GST on new rental construction, provide $125 million in annual tax incentives to refurbish existing rentals, and direct the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation to provide financing for rental construction as part of a larger affordable housing plan whose details haven’t yet been fully revealed.

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  • The rental crunch: How a lack of apartments is affecting Canadian cities

It sounds like good news for anyone who’s endured marathon apartment searches in Canada’s most housing-strapped cities. But critics note just adding rental space isn’t enough: You have to make it affordable.

READ MORE: The rental crunch – How a lack of apartments is affecting Canadian cities

Vancouver city councillor Geoff Meggs is watching. “It’s good for the rental sector, very good for tenants and their families,” he said. Half of Vancouver households rent their homes, he said, a statistic that is also true for Toronto.

In Vancouver, said Meggs, the rental market is so tight that many tenants are spending much more than 30 per cent of their income on shelter costs – a standard threshold of housing affordability. And, according to numbers from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, vacancy rates in the city were at just 1 per cent in 2014.

Cities can’t necessarily count on the private market to create new units.

“The development sector tends to build condominiums because they get their money back right away and they have a very favourable tax situation,” Meggs said. “Rental housing takes longer to get a payout and the tax regime is not as favourable. We really need to see those changes and I think we’d see a big uptake in this whole area.”

Vancouver desperately wanted to encourage more rental construction, said Meggs, so the city agreed to waive certain development charges and parking requirements for developers who promised that a new building would remain a rental for 60 years or the lifespan of the building (whichever is longer).

Although that initiative has seen some success – Meggs says Vancouver is now adding roughly 1000 rental units per year – federal programs like those proposed by the Liberals and NDP would help a lot, he said.

“I think it would produce tens of thousands of units and billions of dollars in economic activity.”

“The benefits are long-term. The rental housing sector is a big part of our economy anyway, but it has been really constrained by a lack of new construction.”

Marion Steele, associate professor emeritus of economics at the University of Guelph, said the problem isn’t just a tight rental market: Lower-income individuals are being priced out, period.

“It’s the problem of the amount of the rents relative to income,” she said. “We’ve got to recognize that big cities need low-income people to do some of the work as well as high-income people.”

One way to encourage low-income people to stay in a city is to offset their high housing costs with a subsidy, she said.

Another is to build more rental housing geared to the lower-income market. That could mean rent geared to income, or rents “substantially below” market rate, she said.

“I think the Liberal proposal to remove the GST [on new rental developments] is a start,” she said, but by itself it won’t encourage enough construction. She’d like to see an affordable housing tax credit like that used to encourage low-income rentals in the U.S.

Under the American program, owners of some affordable housing projects receive tax credits. Most units have to be rented out to tenants who make below the local median income and developers compete for a limited number of credits. The program has been fairly successful in the U.S., Steele said.

But why should Ottawa get involved in rental housing at all? While governments have tussled over whose responsibility this should be – and calls for a national housing strategy have so far gone unaddressed – Steele said it ultimately comes down to cash.

“It’s the federal government that has the money.”

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U.S. teen charged with encouraging boyfriend to kill himself

FAIRHAVEN, Mass. – At first glance, the text messages appear to show a disturbing case of cyberbullying: one teen urging another to kill himself.

But the texts were not sent by a school bully. They were from a 17-year-old girl to her boyfriend, whom she called the love of her life.

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“You can’t think about it. You just have to do it. You said you were gonna do it. Like I don’t get why you aren’t,” Michelle Carter allegedly wrote to Conrad Roy III the day he parked his truck outside a Fairhaven Kmart and killed himself through carbon monoxide poisoning.

Prosecutors have charged Carter with involuntary manslaughter in Roy’s 2014 death. They say that in the week before Roy killed himself, Carter assisted by urging him to overcome his doubts about taking his own life, pressuring him to do it and even telling him to get back in his truck after becoming frightened that the plan was working.

READ MORE: Cyberbullying linked to risk of depression in kids, teens: research review

Carter’s lawyer has strenuously denied that she pushed him to kill himself and has asked a judge to dismiss the case.

In their written response, prosecutors included text exchanges between Carter and Roy that they say support their claim that Carter caused her boyfriend’s death by “wantonly and recklessly” helping him poison himself.

Roy, 18, had a history of depression and had attempted suicide two years earlier, taking an overdose of the painkiller acetaminophen.

“You can’t keep living this way. You just need to do it like you did the last time and not think about it and just do it, babe,” Carter texted him.

Carter’s lawyer, Joseph Cataldo, said her texts amount to speech protected by the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. He said it’s clear from the exchanges that Roy had made up his mind to take his own life and Carter, now 18, did not cause his death.

“He got the generator, he devised the plan and he had to go find a spot. He parked, he had to get the gas for the generator, he had to turn the generator on, he had to sit in that car for a long period of time. He caused his own death,” Cataldo said.

“He had thought this out. He wanted to take his own life. It’s sad, but it’s not manslaughter.”

After his earlier suicide attempt, Roy spent time in a psychiatric hospital and received counselling, said his aunt, Becki Maki. In the weeks before his death, he was excited about graduating from high school and receiving his sea captain’s license, she said.

“He did not have the signs of someone who was considering that,” Maki said.

Carter and Roy met about two years earlier while each was visiting relatives in Florida. They kept in touch, mostly through texts and email, upon returning to Massachusetts. They lived about 50 miles apart and hadn’t seen each other for about a year before Roy died.

Roy used a gasoline-operated water pump to poison himself with carbon monoxide.

While discussing the plan, Carter appears to taunt Roy. “But I bet you’re gonna be like ‘oh, it didn’t work because I didn’t tape the tube right or something like that,” she wrote. “I bet you’re gonna say an excuse like that … you seem to always have an excuse.”

Cataldo said Carter had tried repeatedly to talk Roy out of killing himself and only decided to support his plan when it became clear she could not change his mind.

About a month before his suicide, she suggested that he seek treatment at a psychiatric hospital where she was receiving treatment for a condition Cataldo would not disclose. Roy refused and later twice suggested that they both kill themselves, like Romeo and Juliet, Cataldo said.

©2015

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Parti Québécois set to renew sovereignty push ahead of 2018 election

QUEBEC – The Parti Québécois is set to embark on a campaign to promote sovereignty, with the goal being to convince Quebecers of its merits before the 2018 election.

Leader Pierre Karl Péladeau said the party wants to be ready by the next provincial vote to be able to respond to its rivals’ attacks on sovereignty.

Péladeau wants all Quebec nationalists and pro-independence supporters to focus on what they have in common.

He said in Quebec City Wednesday that the best way to defend the interests of Quebecers is to make Quebec a country.

There are reports Péladeau wants to create a so-called “training school” where the merits of independence would be taught.

The PQ leader was short on details when asked about the school.

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Manitoba paddlers hope banner year sets pace for future

WINNIPEG — Each stroke splashes a smile on Nadya Crossman.

Every one sparking memories of a whirlwind year on the water.

“I couldn’t believe it for a long time,” Crossman said.

The 18-year-old competed at the Canoe Sprint World Championships in Italy this past summer. It was her first international meet as the first Manitoba woman to crack the Canadian crew.

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“It was all the Olympics level athletes,” Crossman said. “Everyone I watched as a little girl was competing right next to me. It was cool to see.”

But Crossman wasn’t the only provincial paddler to make waves this year.

“This summer was crazy,” provincial paddling coach Jerome Seremak said. “Our kids were going all over the world, racing from one weekend to another. It was very busy.”

The Manitoba Paddling Association had one of its most successful seasons ever. It’s athletes not only competed at home and abroad but also won.

“All the years of establishing our programs and facilities, this is almost like the harvest of the work,” Seremak said.

Among those grabbing gold was Maddy Mitchell. The Winnipegger won all twelve events she paddled in at the Western Canada Summer Games. Her profound podium performance set a new record for the most first place finishes at the multi-sport event.

“I’m really proud of it,” Mitchell said. “Years from now, I can look back and my name will still have that record.”

A challenge for other Manitobans to try and match.

“I look up to them a lot,” first year paddler Sandra Page said. “It’s a big inspiration for me to keep paddling and keep trying hard.”

With hopes of one day making it to the ultimate level – the Olympics.

©2015

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Professional Lego builder’s life-sized Homer heading to Edmonton Expo

WATCH ABOVE: Eric Maccallum and Jason Bedard join Global Calgary with details on Maker Faire Calgary on September 12 and 13 at the Spark Science Centre.

CALGARY – Like any kid who grew up in the 1980s, Calgarian Eric Maccallum started playing with Lego as soon as he could get his hands on it. But unlike the rest of us, he’s since become a professional Lego builder, turning the hobby into an art form.

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“It was just one of the toys my parents really encouraged me to play with when I was younger,” Maccallum said Wednesday, his 36th birthday. “I really enjoyed it because you can make any kind of toy out of it, and when you’re bored, you can break it back down and rebuild it.”

Maccallum was working part-time at a Lego store in Calgary when he finished up university with plans to go into finance. He visited a grand opening of an Edmonton store, and met a master builder from the U.S. who’d created an eight-foot tall Yoda.

“That really inspired me,” he said. “Once I talked to this master builder and what he found in his career and where it has gone, it really made me do a 90-degree turn and decide, ‘I think I’m going to start using Lego as a medium to do artwork.’ It worked out really well. I’m more excited to be doing this than any other possible job I’d thought about.”

Calgarian Eric Maccallum’s giant Tigger Lego creation.

Eric Maccallum

Maccallum also teaches classroom workshops and parties, teaching Lego building to young and old alike.

His Homer Simpson Lego figure has earned much attention; it will be featured this weekend at Calgary’s Maker Faire (at the TELUS Spark Science Centre) before heading off to the Edmonton Comic and Entertainment Expo Sept. 25 to 27.

“He travels in a crate in pieces. His head detaches…all models do that.”

Maccallum said Homer took about 200 hours to create from design to completion.

“I’ve made things bigger—but they’ve taken less time—but they’re more flat,” he said. “Only Homer’s head is symmetrical. The rest of the body…is not symmetrical so he took a bit more time to do. Normally a model like Tigger – that took about 120 hours and he’s just a tiny bit shorter.”

The designer said there should be about 100,000 Lego pieces for guests to enjoy this weekend at the Maker Faire, and suggests anyone interested in his future projects check his website or Facebook page here.

Calgary’s Eric Maccallum with his Homer Simpson Lego creation.

Eric Maccallum

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Terminally ill Alabama dad gets to see son play baseball one last time

WATCH ABOVE: A Prattville, Alabama father with stage 4 colon cancer got the chance to see his 11-year-old son play baseball for what may be the last time. Kacey Drescher reports.

A Prattville, Alabama father who has colon cancer is getting the chance to see his son play baseball for what may be the last time.

Gary Parrish was diagnosed with the stage 4 cancer and metastasis to his liver in June. Three months later, Parrish’s doctors stopped his treatments because his body wasn’t responding to the medications.

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The declining health of Parrish has taken its toll on his 11-year-old son, Ryan. Parrish, a baseball enthusiast, went to every one of his son’s games last year.

“When [Ryan] first got out here, he didn’t have a whole lot of focus and I found out why,” said the boy’s baseball coach, Caison Whatley to WSFA News.

“He’s got a whole lot more on his mind than we could ever have,” he added.

That’s when Whatley decided to do something for the Parrish family they’d be able to remember forever – Whatley went to the city and asked for the recreational baseball season to be pushed up by a week in order for Gary Parrish to see his son play one last time.

“We want to give Ryan something to cherish for the rest of his life and this may be it,” said Whatley.

With Ryan wearing number 21 – the same number his dad wore as a young athlete – he stood on top of the pitching mound, hoping to get “just strikes.”

“[My dad] might not be here for all the other games and tonight’s very special because he gets to come,” said Ryan.

“It’s not all about the wins. It’s about what you can do for that child, give him everlasting memories.,” said Whatley to WSFA.

©2015

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Migrants finding little sympathy in Hungary for their plight

WATCH ABOVE: Hungary’s treatment of Syrian refugees has been called ‘shameful’ and ‘humiliating’ by a international human rights group. Jackson Proskow reports on the struggles refugees are having trying to find a new place to call home.

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BUDAPEST, Hungary — A makeshift camp of thousands from the Middle East, Asia and Africa has been dismantled at Budapest’s Keleti train station, and its inhabitants have left for Germany. But the loathing of them lingers in Hungary, which hopes to build a border fence strong enough to keep out future waves of asylum seekers.

“We need the fence,” said Istvan Szabo, a 43-year-old lathe operator having a beer at a bar next to the station, where hundreds seeking refuge in the European Union still line up daily to buy tickets to Western Europe.

The tent city sprang up last month when the government blocked the asylum seekers from traveling by train to Austria and Germany. Authorities finally gave in last weekend and sent buses to take them to the border with Austria.

Szabo, like many in this socially conservative land of 10 million, says he doesn’t understand why they’ve come.

“If they couldn’t solve their problems back where they live, why do they think they’re going to be able to solve them here?” Szabo said.

Such lack of sympathy is a striking feature of the massive march this summer from Turkey through southeastern Europe. Many of the trekkers interviewed by The Associated Press say their worst experiences have come in Hungary, where farmers hiss at them in disapproval and the government leaves their care mostly up to unpaid volunteers.

READ MORE: Hungarian video journalist trips refugees running from police

WATCH ABOVE: Video journalist caught on camera tripping and kicking fleeing refugees in Hungary

A recent opinion poll sponsored by the Budapest think tank Republikon found that just 19 percent believe Hungary has a duty to take in refugees, while 66 percent deem them a threat and should not be let in. The Ipsos survey of 2,000 people, published Aug. 27 as the Keleti camp was growing, had a margin of error below 3 percentage points.

The findings reflect a country where ethnic minorities barely exist outside Budapest and right-wing beliefs dominate in small towns that strongly support the ultranationalist Jobbik party.

“Many Hungarians are racist. They lack self-confidence and see their identity under threat. And our government exploits these feelings to boost its own popularity,” said Zsuzsanna Zhohar, 36, who has helped lead volunteer efforts to give food, water, medical aid and other help to those passing through Hungary.

“It can be hard to convince Hungarians that these people don’t want to take our jobs, our homes, our women, our dogs,” she said, laughing at the absurdity of the idea.

Yet Hungary at times has become a theater of the absurd, with police expending great effort to marshal the migrants to specific spots, only to watch them walk straight out again to snarl traffic.

Government billboards warn the newcomers to respect the country’s laws and culture, but the signs all are in Hungarian, which virtually none of them can read.

Then again, it’s hard to find one intending to stay in Hungary anyway.

“The government says they don’t want immigrants here and they can’t take our jobs away,” said satirist Gergely Kovacs, a 35-year-old graphic designer.

“But the truth is that nobody wants to come here. Every immigrant would spend just three days here if we kept the borders open. There’s no need to hate them because they’re leaving as quickly as possible.”

Kovacs’ tongue-in-cheek political movement, the Two-Tailed Dog Party, has mocked Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s anti-immigrant campaign by erecting similarly designed billboards. One of them, in English, notes the hypocrisy in decrying immigration when hundreds of thousands of Hungarians have sought better-paid employment in Western Europe since the country was admitted to the EU in 2004.

“Come to Hungary,” the billboard advises asylum seekers. “We’ve got jobs in London!”

Many Hungarians struggle to get by, and that helps to sour their outlook on the foreign influx. In 2011, Orban seized the public’s private pension funds worth $13 billion to cover government debt and help the country exit an International Monetary Fund bailout. Its sales tax is 27 percent, the highest in Europe, and Hungary has one of the lowest average wages in Europe, barely $600 a month.

READ MORE: 13,000 migrants reach Austria after Hungary eases train travel

“The volunteers were throwing food and clothes at the migrants, and they wouldn’t give me a stinking sandwich. Why are they so generous with them and not with me?” said Korneliusz Lecz, a former chemical engineer who is homeless. As he sat near Keleti station, he blamed the refugees for an ailment in his left eye, saying they had brought “contagious diseases.”

Near the border with Serbia, farmers express resentment of people running through their fields of corn and sunflowers. They wonder how the migrants could afford to pay smugglers more than $3,000 for the journey.

“They are not poor. I am poor,” said Denes Csonka, 55, sitting next to his small fields of melons, cabbage and sun-scorched corn stalks near the border town of Roszke. “Yet I have seen them almost every night taking food from my fields and trampling my crops. They are taking food from my own mouth, and they do not even ask before they do it.”

Such frustrations find their grass-roots voice in Jobbik (pronounced YOB-ick), which has become the No. 2 party in opinion polls as it assails Orban’s Fidesz party for being too soft on immigrants and minorities, including Gypsies, gays and Jews. On Saturday, Jobbik activists demonstrated for sterner action, waving signs that read, “Deportation, not work permits!” and “Border closures! We don’t want immigrants!”

“Whoever is a liberal is scum,” said Levente Muranyi, a 75-year-old former Jobbik lawmaker at the rally. He called left-wing support for aiding migrants “tantamount to treason.”

He said Germany’s open door for Muslims fleeing war in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan would leave Hungary besieged by Islam from both west and east, even worse than when Hungary battled eastern invasion by Ottoman Turks from the 15th to 17th centuries.

In pictures: Hundreds of migrants leave Hungary on foot

Jobbik activists sometimes go to the Serbian border and shout abuse in the face of startled asylum seekers. On Tuesday, a camerawoman for a Jobbik-linked web TV channel took the hostility a step further. Journalists filming scuffles between police and migrants captured Petra Laszlo on video as she kicked a young man and a teenage girl in the knees and tripped a running man carrying a young boy. Her station fired her after the video appeared on social media.

Julia Lakatos, an analyst at the Center for Fair Political Analysis, a Budapest think tank, said Hungary was no more racist or xenophobic than other parts of Eastern Europe; it just has little experience with refugees.

“It’s a gut response to fear the unknown,” Lakatos said. “My personal experience is that people are really frustrated, there have been hard times in Hungary, and they are searching for a scapegoat. But anyone who came into contact with the refugees, that experience changed their minds. Personal experience overrides fears.”

Csaba Toth, strategy director of Republikon, the research institute that commissioned the opinion poll, said he didn’t think support for sheltering asylum seekers would ever rise above 30 percent. Most Hungarians “tend to agree with the government view that the migrants are potentially dangerous, they’re certainly unwelcome, and they want them to leave for Germany,” he said.

Toth noted that Orban’s quips that would be deemed racist elsewhere are well- received domestically, such as when he said Hungary’s tiny resident Muslim community could provide all the specialty foods Hungarians crave.

“We are truly glad that there are kebab shops on our avenues. We like buying lamb from Syrian butchers at Easter,” Orban said Monday. “We are going to honor this Muslim community in Hungary, but we don’t want their proportion to grow suddenly.”

Orban is determined to build the 13-foot-high (4-meter-high) fence along the 110-mile (175-kilometer) frontier. But analysts don’t see how Hungary realistically can block the flow.

Kovacs, the satirist, says he has a better idea: Build an overpass above Hungary “so immigrants could just walk right over us in the clouds. We wouldn’t have to see them, and they wouldn’t have to see us.”

©2015

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UPDATE: Testalinden controlled burn still under control

OLIVER – Plumes of smoke from a planned controlled burn have alarmed some in the Oliver and Osoyoos areas. However, there is nothing to worry about as B.C. Wildfire Service says the deliberately set fire hasn’t gotten away from them. The B.C. Wildfire Service started a controlled burn earlier today as they continue to fight the Testalinden Wildfire. Ground crews have already started work on that planned burn.

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“The ground crews have what they call drip torches so it is a small type of metal torch that has a mixture of diesel fuel and gasoline in it and the crews actually walk along and light strips of fire in a controlled area within the controlled fire perimeter,” says fire information officer Colette Fauchon.

Fauchon says a helicopter will also be used to ignite the controlled burn in a larger area that is very steep where they can’t get crews on the ground. The method they are using is aimed at creating a low intensity ground fire.

Read More: Testalinden wildfire 80 per cent contained

“We don’t want to burn the trees. So this is one way that we can have a controlled burn and we don’t have to have a candling effect that people often see with high intensity fires,” she says.

The controlled burn is taking place within the fire’s 4506 hectare perimeter.

“The difficulty that we have is that a lot of the fire is on steep terrain. As the fire has been burning trees fall down, they roll down the hill and they just keep spreading the fire within the containment area. So this is one way for us to speed up that process of burning the fuel that the fire is going to burn up anyway over time,” says Fauchon.

The Testalinden Wildfire is currently considered 80 per cent contained. Depending on weather conditions, crews may finish the controlled burn today or continue with the controlled burn tomorrow.

– with files from Angela Jung

Smoke from the controlled burn at the site of the Testalinden Wildfire.

Angela Jung / Global News

Smoke from the controlled burn at the site of the Testalinden Wildfire.

Oliver Daily News

Smoke from the controlled burn at the site of the Testalinden Wildfire.

Oliver Daily News

Smoke from the controlled burn at the site of the Testalinden Wildfire.

Oliver Daily News

Smoke from the controlled burn at the site of the Testalinden Wildfire.

Oliver Daily News

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