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Aptil 24, 2015 – 100th Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide

It is with a deep sense of reverence that I commemorate with you the 100th Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide.

Today, we pause to remember this atrocity which was perpetrated by the Ottoman Empire – the execution of 1.5 million Armenians.

Members of the Armenian community have keenly felt the horror of this black chapter in the world’s history.

On this solemn occasion, we pay homage to the victims and express solidarity with the survivors and their descendants.  We stand together as we recognize the first genocide of the 20th Century. In so doing, we are reminded of our shared commitment to ensure that acts like this will never be repeated again.

 

I was privileged to lead a Canadian delegation to Armenia on the 90th Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide.  The Canadian delegation joined 1.5 million Armenians from around the world, in laying flowers at the Genocide Memorial’s Eternal Flame. Armenians, members of the international Armenian Diaspora and diplomats from around the world sent a powerful message – the atrocities of 1915 will never be forgotten.

 

As the descendent of survivors of the Pontian Genocide, I believe it is important for us to remember the lessons of history and uphold the values Canadians hold dear – peace, freedom, democracy and respect.  In so doing, we will develop a deeper understanding of our duty and responsibility to our fellow man to ensure that we live in peace and harmony.

 

This is a day we solemnly acknowledge as we work toward a more just and tolerant future for all mankind.