OTTAWA, Aug. 8, 2015 /CNW/ - The Department of Veterans Affairs, today issued the following statement for National Peacekeepers' Day:
"On August 9, 1974, all nine Canadians on board a United Nations-marked Canadian military transport aircraft were killed when the plane was shot down during a resupply mission in the Middle East. This was the largest ever single-day loss of Canadian Armed Forces personnel during a peace support operation. Each year on this anniversary, we pause to remember and honour all Canadians who served—and those who sacrificed their lives—to help restore peace throughout the world.
"These brave men and women—including members of the Canadian Armed Forces, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, provincial and municipal police forces, as well as Canadian diplomats and civilians supporting peace operations—have worked toward this greater good. However, peace is not always an easy ideal to secure. Many areas of the world experience instability and conflict that puts peacekeepers in demanding and dangerous situations. Peacekeeping includes diplomatic, humanitarian, stabilizing and enforcement responsibilities, often in harm's way.
"National Peacekeepers' Day was first commemorated on August 9, 2008, to bring greater awareness and appreciation to the more than 125,000 Canadian peacekeepers who have participated in international efforts over the past almost seven decades, and those who continue to serve in missions around the world today. Approximately 130 Canadians have died in these efforts, and many more have suffered physical and mental injuries.
"Whether at the peacekeeping monument Reconciliation in Ottawa, at a community event in your hometown or online, let us take time to show gratitude for Canadian peacekeepers and the incredible work they have done and continue to do."
For more information on National Peacekeepers' Day, visit veterans.gc.ca.
SOURCE Veterans Affairs Canada
For further information: Media Relations, Veterans Affairs Canada, 613-992-7468