OTTAWA, Nov. 3, 2014 /CNW/ - The Honourable Julian Fantino, Minister of Veterans Affairs, today issued the following statement to mark the 70th anniversary of the Liberation of Belgium:
"From September to November, 1944, Canadian soldiers endured harsh and gruelling conditions against an entrenched German army. The flat Belgian countryside offered little protection or cover and was often flooded, caking soldiers and machinery in mud. Despite these challenges, the Allies persevered, restoring peace after more than four years of brutal occupation.
"Canada's soldiers were treated as heroes and celebrated by the people of Belgium. They were often greeted by entire towns and showered with flowers. This victory, however, did not come without a price, as more than 800 Canadians were killed.
"Today, on the 70th anniversary of the Liberation of Belgium, we honour the memory and acknowledge the achievements and sacrifices of the brave Canadians who answered the call to uphold the basic human rights of freedom and peace. In helping to liberate Western Europe, they played a crucial role in orchestrating the end of the Second World War."
For information about Canada's role in the Liberation of Belgium, please visit veterans.gc.ca.
SOURCE: Veterans Affairs Canada
For further information: Contacts: Barbara Mottram, Director of Communications, Office of the Minister of Veterans Affairs, 613-996-4649; Media Relations, Veterans Affairs Canadam, 613-992-7468