OTTAWA, Aug. 31, 2012 /CNW/ - Today, the Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs, issued the following statement regarding the 68th anniversary of the liberation of Belgium by Allied forces on September 4, 1944.
"Canada played an important role in the liberation of Belgium during the Second World War. Our soldiers, sailors and airmen helped defeat the German army and restore freedom to the people of Belgium after more than four long years of harsh occupation. Having made the ultimate sacrifice, more than 800 Canadians are buried in Belgium and it is our duty to remember the sacrifices and accomplishments of the Canadians who brought justice to Belgium.
Canadians who fought in Belgium achieved and sacrificed much in their efforts to help bring peace and freedom to the people of Europe. These combatants were among the more than one million men and women who served in Canada's Armed Forces during the Second World War. More than 45,000 Canadians gave their lives in the war. Canada and the world recognize the sacrifices and achievements of all Canadians, like those who fought in Belgium, who accomplished so much and left a lasting legacy of peace.
For many years, Canada and Belgium have enjoyed good relations based on friendship and trust. These relations were strengthened by Canada's contribution to the liberation of Belgium.
We mark this anniversary by remembering the efforts made by these brave Canadians in bringing freedom to others. As a nation, we come together to pay tribute to those who served, fought and fell, in defence of the values that mark us as Canadians."
For more information on the liberation of Belgium, visit the Veterans Affairs Canada Web site at veterans.gc.ca.
SOURCE Veterans Affairs Canada