Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement on Diwali:
“Laureen and I would like to extend our best wishes to those celebrating Diwali across the country and around the world.
“Also known as the ‘Festival of Lights,’ Diwali is celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs, Jains and Buddhists. It is a time when family and friends gather to celebrate the triumph of light over darkness and of good over evil. It also marks the end of the harvest season and a period of renewal, providing an occasion to recognize the good fortunes of the previous year, and to remember those less fortunate than ourselves.
“With this in mind, let us acknowledge the tragic events that have taken place this past week, and extend our deepest sympathies to the families of Corporal Nathan Cirillo and Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent.
“These events are grim reminders that Canada is not immune to the types of attacks we have seen elsewhere around the world. It is imperative that we, as a free and democratic people who embrace human dignity for all, continue to defend our values against those who seek to undermine them.
“In light of recent events, the celebration of Diwali is timely. On behalf of all Canadians, I wish everyone celebrating today a happy, healthy, meaningful and safe Diwali.”