| Statement by Prime Minister of Canada on Victory in Europe Day|
Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement to mark the 69th anniversary of Victory in Europe Day (V-E Day):
“Today, Canada and the international community commemorate the 69th anniversary of the Allied victory over Nazi Germany, a fascist regime rooted in ethnic and racial hatred and in anti-Semitism that stained history with the atrocities of the Holocaust.
“As we commemorate V-E Day, let us honour the strength and outstanding achievements of the more than one million brave Canadians and our Allies who risked their lives during the Second World War, so that we can live in peace today.
“Let us also pause and pay tribute to the more than 45,000 airmen, sailors and soldiers who sadly made the ultimate sacrifice. We will forever be grateful to them and their families for their service to our country. Places like Sicily, Ortona, Juno Beach, Caen, the Falaise Gap, Dieppe and the Scheldt still echo the honour of the valiant Canadians who fought so hard for freedom there.
“The strength, ingenuity and dedication demonstrated by our men and women in uniform during the Second World War and the materials Canada provided to the efforts generated huge international respect for our country and immense national pride. This played a pivotal role in helping define and shape the free, democratic, prosperous and proud country that Canada is today.
“I am proud that Canada’s commitment to standing up for freedom and justice in the world is as alive today as it was earlier in the last century. Tomorrow, on the National Day of Honour, we celebrate the remarkable contributions of the Canadian Armed Forces in Afghanistan, which have left that country more stable, secure, and self-sufficient.
“On the anniversary of V-E Day, I encourage all Canadians to participate in the events and activities taking place across the country and to learn more about this important chapter in our nation’s history. I also call on Canadians to join me in extending our heartfelt gratitude and appreciation to all members of the Canadian Armed Forces and their families as they courageously continue to put the interests of our great country ahead of their own, in the same proud tradition.”
PMO Press Office 5/8/2014