CANADA

Magnitude-7.7 temblor

A magnitude-7.7 earthquake struck late Saturday off the west coast of Canada, but there were no reports of major damage. Residents in parts of British Columbia were evacuated, but the province appeared to escape largely unscathed from the biggest quake in Canada since 1949. The U.S. Geological Survey said the powerful temblor hit the Queen Charlotte Islands just after 8 p.m. local time Saturday at a depth of about 3 miles and was centered 96 miles south of Masset, British Columbia. It was felt across a wide area in British Columbia, both on its Pacific islands and on the mainland.

UKRAINE

Strong opposition turnout

Ukraine’s opposition parties performed strongly in Sunday’s parliamentary vote, according to an exit poll, but President Viktor Yanukovych’s party could still retain control of the legislature as its members are likely to sweep individual races across the country. The West is paying close attention to the conduct of the vote in the strategic ex-Soviet state, which lies between Russia and the European Union, and serves as a key conduit for transit of Russian energy supplies to many EU countries. An election deemed unfair would likely turn Ukraine further away from the West and toward Moscow. Opposition parties alleged widespread violations on election day, such as vote-buying and a suspiciously high amount of home voting, but a local election monitor said those violations were isolated.

SPAIN

Sheep crossing in Madrid

Shepherds led a flock of more than 2,000 sheep through central Madrid on Sunday in defense of ancient grazing, migration and droving rights threatened by urban sprawl and modern agricultural practices. Many tourists and residents were surprised to see traffic cut to allow the ovine parade to bleat its way across some of Madrid’s most upscale urban streets. The right to use droving routes that wind across land that was open fields and woodland before Madrid grew from a rural hamlet to the great metropolis it is today has existed since at least 1273. Every year, a handful of shepherds defend the right.

Compiled from wire reports.