Ottawa, ON – The Hon. Pierre Poilievre, Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada and the Official Opposition, released the following statement on Lebanese Independence Day: 

“In 1943, after years of being subjected to invaders and oppressors, the people of Lebanon abolished the French Mandate, taking what they thought would be the last step in their journey to independence. 

“Unfortunately, it wouldn’t be quite so simple – the authorities in the French Mandate would not easily give up their power and influence. Newly-elected President Bechara El-Khoury, Prime Minister Riad al-Solh and other Lebanese officials were immediately arrested and exiled. After decades of hard work, the hope of an independent Lebanon seemed to be fading. 

“But ultimately, the spirit of the Lebanese people prevailed. They demanded the release of their leaders and rallied together, united to defend their common home from foreign influence. On November 22, 1943, their government was freed – marking the start of Lebanese independence. 

“As we mark the 80th anniversary of this triumph, Lebanese Canadians and their countrymen around the world reflect on this incredible legacy of freedom. They take pride in Lebanon’s inspiring journey towards independence and its unique existence as a nation founded on the principles of democratic collaboration between people from all walks of life.  

“On behalf of Canada’s common sense Conservatives, all the best to Lebanese Canadians and Lebanese people around the world as you celebrate this incredible milestone year. Happy Independence Day!”