Peace group reiterates call to bring troops home from Afghanistan

    TORONTO, Dec. 5 /CNW/ - The Canadian Peace Alliance (CPA), Canada's
largest peace coalition, was saddened by today's news that three more Canadian
troops have been killed in Afghanistan. The CPA extends its condolences to the
families of the soldiers, whose names have not been released. Canada's death
toll - now at 100 - is the highest since the Korean War, and Canadian troops
continue to suffer one of the highest casualty rates of all NATO forces.
    "We can't afford three more years of war," says Christine Jones, co-chair
of the CPA. "If Canadian soldiers continue to die at the current rate,
Canada's death toll could double or triple by 2011."
    Stephen Harper's Conservatives, with backing from Liberal leader Stéphane
Dion, voted on March 13, 2008 to extend Canada's mission to 2011. Weeks later,
an Angus Reid poll showed that 58 per cent of Canadians opposed the decision
to extend the mission. Other polls show a majority of Canadians want to
withdraw troops now. Thousands of Afghan civilians have been killed since the
war began in 2001.
    "Sadly, these deaths will not be the last for either Canadian soldiers or
Afghan civilians," says Sid Lacombe, national coordinator of the CPA. "We
continue to call on Stephen Harper to end Canada's mission in Afghanistan, and
bring all our troops home now."
    The CPA will join a local candle-light vigil today at 9:00pm at Dundas
Square (Yonge and Dundas East) in Toronto to mourn the deaths of all those
killed in Afghanistan, soldiers and civilians alike.

    The Canadian Peace Alliance is Canada's largest peace coalition,
representing 150 labour, student, faith, and community organizations in every
region of Canada.
    CPA spokespersons are available for interview upon request.

For further information:

For further information: Sid Lacombe, CPA coordinator, (416) 333-7567
(cellular); Chris Jones, CPA co-chair, (613) 601-7755 (cellular)

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