Andrew Scheer, Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada, issues a statement to mark Nayrouz (Coptic New Year) September 11, 2017 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE OTTAWA, ON – Andrew Scheer, Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada and Leader of the Official Opposition, issued the following statement on Nayrouz: “Today, Christian Copts in Canada and across the world will gather to celebrate Nayrouz, the ‘Coptic New Year’. “This celebration known as the ‘Feast of El-Nayrouz’ marks the first day of the Coptic month of Thout, and commemorates the countless number of Coptic martyrs who sacrificed their lives to preserve their faith. “During this occasion, many Coptic Orthodox Christians will come together to welcome and celebrate the coming new year with their families and friends. “Unfortunately, even today, many faith groups, including Coptic Christians, continue to face persecution in the Middle East and throughout the world because of their religious beliefs. This is simply unacceptable. “Canada’s Conservatives will always support religious pluralism and stand up for everyone’s fundamental right to practice their own religion freely. Over the past year, our Party has demonstrated this commitment by calling on the Government of Canada to condemn ISIS’ atrocities and declare them to be genocide. “On behalf of the Canada’s Conservatives and the Official Opposition, I would like to extend my warmest wishes to all Coptic Christians celebrating a peaceful Nayrouz!” -30- For more information: Anthony Farrow (613) 995-9054 [email protected] Daniel Schow (613) 286-1050 [email protected]